The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released a proposal yesterday that critics say would expand the reach of the Clean Water Act to cover most creeks and wetlands across the country.
The EPA says the rule would not broaden its jurisdiction. It says the rule just clarifies that most seasonal and rain-dependent streams are protected, as are wetlands near streams. The agency’s website says it does not cover ditches or groundwater. The EPA plans a 90-day public outreach tour to explain the rule.
The EPA’s emphasis is on protecting seasonal waterways, which is a big issue in arid Western states. But Sen. Lisa Murkowski says it would have a large impact on Alaska, too, because the state has abundant wetlands. She says the rule could effectively give the federal government control over most of the state, threatening access and development.
Watch EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy’s overview of the rule:
- Juneau’s Gunakadeit Park getting ready to be torn down. The park will serve as the staging area for the larger demolition of the Gastineau Apartments.
- Turkey said the plane violated its airspace and that it had issued 10 warnings before firing. Russian President Vladimir Putin said the downing was a "stab in the back by the terrorists' accomplices."
- One doesn’t usually associate “state gasline corporation” and “drama” — but this weekend, the state-owned Alaska Gasline Development Corporation was the source of all kinds of drama.
- This season's pink salmon were slightly bigger, but southern Panhandle runs fizzled.