WASHINGTON, DC, April 23, 2020 – The Supreme Court ruled Thursday morning that the Clean Water Act’s safeguards against facilities releasing pollutants into bodies of water like rivers, lakes, and oceans also applies to groundwater if the groundwater carries the pollutants to those same locations. In short, the ruling in County of Maui v. Hawai’i Wildlife Fund will prevent a potentially massive loophole that would have permitted dangerous contamination of the nation’s water.
Alliance for Justice President Nan Aron release the following statement:
“This ruling is a clear victory for the safety of our communities. When facilities like the Maui wastewater treatment pollute our rivers, streams and oceans, they should be held responsible, full stop. Still, there were three justices willing to give such facilities an out by reading the Clean Water Act so narrowly it could do little to actually protect our waterways. It matters who is on our court, and clean water is essential to all Americans. Today’s outcome will have far-reaching implications for protecting our nation’s environment and public health.”