The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) and the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) have each filed notices to appeal a September decision to uphold federal pollution limits for the Chesapeake Bay, the nation's largely estuary. The National Association of Home Builders has also challenged the ruling.
U.S. District Court Judge Sylvia Rambo ruled that the Environmental Portection Agency had not overstepped the bounds of the Clean Water Act in its efforts to reduce pollution in the bay because six states and Washington, D.C. had agreed to the plan to set and enforce standards for pollution reduction, and the states were allowed to decide how to the meet the limits.
AFBF President Bob Stallman says, "This case isn’t about whether or not to protect the Chesapeake Bay -- we all share that goal. This case is about whether EPA can dictate where farming will be allowed, where homes can be built, and where businesses can be established. By taking over decisions like that, EPA has turned the whole concept of cooperative federalism out the barn door."
Further, AFBF believes the Clean Water Act puts states in the drivers’ seat to determine how farmers, builders, homeowners and towns will share the responsibility of achieving clean water. EPA’s framework puts EPA in control of those decisions. Read the full AFBF press release.
The NCGA press release states, "We continue to believe the policies and science behind Chesapeake Bay TMLD [Total Maximum Daily Load] are wrong and that it goes beyond the scope of Clean Water Act authority. We hope the Third Circuit Court of Appeals will reconsider these arguments and ultimately provide state and local jurisdiction more flexibility to work with agriculture in meeting water quality goals."