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All Maryland's waterways deserve protection

The Clean Water Act has brought progress to the Chesapeake Bay, but in order to continue the bay on the path to success we must protect all the waterways in Maryland, including the Anacostia River ("Close Clean Water Act loophole," Nov. 12).

The loophole in the act has left more than 59 percent of streams vulnerable to pollution, including many that feed into the Chesapeake Bay. All of Maryland's waterways deserve protection.

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Fortunately, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposed restoring protections to all of the state's waterways last March. After almost eight months, the public comment period ends Nov. 14.

In the last few days, the submission of public comments is essential because powerful polluters are waging an acrimonious political campaign against the EPA's rule. Despite their bitter opposition, nearly 740,000 supportive comments were delivered to EPA officials in Washington last month.

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If we push back against polluters in these last few days we can restore safeguards to all of the waterways that support strong local economies and make our state beautiful.

Environment Maryland is grateful to the EPA for taking the steps needed to protect all of Maryland's waterways. I encourage every Maryland resident to actively side with our state's waters before the end of the public comment period.

T. Aurelie Konin, Silver Spring

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