USDA, EPA partnership aims to support water quality, economy - WOWK 13 Charleston, Huntington WV News, Weather, Sports

USDA, EPA partnership aims to support water quality, economy

Posted: Updated:
  • EnergyEnergyMore>>

  • EPA extends Clean Power Plan comment period to December

    EPA extends Clean Power Plan comment period to December

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 5:17 PM EDT2014-09-16 21:17:35 GMT
    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced Sept. 16 the decision to extend the public comment period on the Clean Power Plan an additional 45 days, from Oct. 16 to Dec. 1, 2014.
    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced Sept. 16 the decision to extend the public comment period on the Clean Power Plan an additional 45 days, from Oct. 16 to Dec. 1, 2014.
  • Landmark fracking study finds no water pollution

    Landmark fracking study finds no water pollution

    Tuesday, September 16 2014 2:34 PM EDT2014-09-16 18:34:47 GMT
    The final report from a landmark federal study on hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, found no evidence that chemicals or brine water from the gas drilling process moved upward to contaminate drinking water at a site in western Pennsylvania.
    The final report from a landmark federal study on hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, found no evidence that chemicals or brine water from the gas drilling process moved upward to contaminate drinking water at a site in western Pennsylvania.
  • Duke Energy pledges $500M to expand solar energy in North Carolina

    Duke Energy pledges $500M to expand solar energy in North Carolina

    Monday, September 15 2014 10:22 AM EDT2014-09-15 14:22:53 GMT
    Duke Energy has committed to contribute $500 million to a major solar power expansion in North Carolina, the company announced Sept. 15.
    Duke Energy has committed to contribute $500 million to a major solar power expansion in North Carolina, the company announced Sept. 15.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Environmental Protection Agency announced an expanded partnership Dec. 3 to focus on water quality trading and other market-based approaches to support both the environment and the economy.

"New water quality trading markets hold incredible potential to benefit rural America by providing new income opportunities and enhancing conservation of water and wildlife habitat," Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said. "Additionally, these efforts will strengthen businesses across the nation by providing a new pathway to comply with regulatory requirements."

Water quality trading provides a cost-effective approach for regulated entities to comply with EPA Clean Water Act requirements, including water quality-based effluent limits in National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permits.

"EPA is committed to finding collaborative solutions that protect and restore our nation's waterways and the health of the communities that depend on them," said EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy. "We're excited about partnering with USDA to expand support for water quality trading, which shows that environmental improvements can mean a better bottom line for farmers and ranchers."

Trading would allow regulated entities to purchase and use pollutant reduction credits generated by other sources in a watershed.

Both organizations will: coordinate and enhance communications and outreach to states, agricultural producers, regulated sources and interested third parties on water quality trading; engage expertise across agencies in the review of grants, loans or technical assistance programs focused on water quality trading; share information on the development of rules and guidance that have the potential to affect water quality trading; collaborate on developing tools and information resources for states and credit generators to guide decision making, reduce costs in program design and implementation, improve environmental performance as well as foster consistency and integrity across regional initiatives; and co-host a workshop by 2015 to share available resources.