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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Clean Water Act: Legislation Concerning Discharges from Recreational Boats

Clean Water Act: Legislation Concerning Discharges from Recreational Boats

Date: June 19, 2008
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Description: The Environmental Protection Agency is attempting to develop a regulatory response to a 2006 federal court ruling that vacated a long-standing rule that exempts discharges associated with the normal operation of vessels from permit requirements of the Clean Water Act. Concern that this ruling could require millions of recreational boaters to obtain permits has led to the introduction of legislation to exempt these and other types of vessels from water quality regulation. This report discusses background to the issue; bills introduced in response, two of which were passed by Congress on July 22; and draft permits proposed by EPA on June 17.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Ballast Water Management to Combat Invasive Species

Ballast Water Management to Combat Invasive Species

Date: June 10, 2008
Creator: Buck, Eugene H.
Description: This report provides background on various approaches to ballast water management and reviews current ballast water management laws and programs.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Arsenic in Drinking Water: Regulatory Developments and Issues

Arsenic in Drinking Water: Regulatory Developments and Issues

Date: June 1, 2008
Creator: Tiemann, Mary
Description: This report discusses the Safe Drinking Water Act Amendments of 1996. These amendments directed the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to update the standard for arsenic in drinking water.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Stormwater Permits: Status of EPA's Regulatory Program

Stormwater Permits: Status of EPA's Regulatory Program

Date: May 27, 2008
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Description: This report discusses the regulation of stormwater drainage. Stormwater discharge systems are the pipes and sewer lines that carry rainwater or snow melt, but not domestic sanitary wastes, away from urban areas and commercial and industrial facilities. For many years the focus of the nation's water quality programs was on controlling pollutants associated with industrial process wastewaters and municipal sewage discharges.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Environmental Activities of the U.S. Coast Guard

Environmental Activities of the U.S. Coast Guard

Date: May 22, 2008
Creator: Ramseur, Jonathan L.
Description: This report discusses the U.S. Coast Guard's (USCG's) environmental activities, which focus on the prevention of oil spills and pollution.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Perchlorate Contamination of Drinking Water: Regulatory Issues and Legislative Actions

Perchlorate Contamination of Drinking Water: Regulatory Issues and Legislative Actions

Date: May 22, 2008
Creator: Tiemann, Mary
Description: This report reviews perchlorate water contamination issues and developments.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Wastewater Treatment: Overview and Background

Wastewater Treatment: Overview and Background

Date: March 20, 2008
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Description: The Clean Water Act prescribes performance levels to be attained by municipal sewage treatment plants in order to prevent the discharge of harmful wastes into surface waters.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Clean Water Act: A Summary of the Law

Clean Water Act: A Summary of the Law

Date: March 17, 2008
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Description: This report presents a summary of the law, describing the essence of the statute without discussing its implementation. Other CRS products do discuss implementation, including CRS Report RL33800, Water Quality Issues in the 110th Congress: Oversight and Implementation, and numerous products cited in that report.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Water Quality: Implementing the Clean Water Act

Water Quality: Implementing the Clean Water Act

Date: December 12, 2006
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Description: None
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Clean Water Act Section 401: Background and Issues

Clean Water Act Section 401: Background and Issues

Date: October 5, 2006
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Description: Section 401 of the Clean Water Act requires that an applicant for a federal license or permit provide a certification that any discharges from the facility will comply with the Act, including water quality standard requirements. Disputes have arisen over the states' exercise of authority under Section 401. Until recently, much of the debate over the Section 401 certification issue has been between states and hydropower interests. A 1994 Supreme Court decision which upheld the states' authority in this area dismayed development and hydroelectric power interest groups. The Court revisited these issues in a 2006 ruling that unanimously upheld the states' authority to condition hydropower licenses. The dispute between states and industry groups about Section 401 authority has been a legislative issue on several occasions, but Congress has not responded by modifying the provision's scope. In addition, there has been interest in clarifying whether Section 401 certification applies to nonpoint source discharges, such as rainfall runoff, as well as point source discharges from pipes or ditches.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department