Report: Virginia second in nation in water pollution

Posted at 1:43 PM, Mar 23, 2012
and last updated 2012-03-23 13:59:33-04

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) – More toxic chemicals were dumped into Virginia’s waterways in 2010 than nearly any other state, according to a new report from Environment Virginia.

18 million pounds of toxic chemicals were released into the Commonwealth’s lakes, rivers and streams according to a release issued by the environmental group. That makes Virginia second to only Indiana in the nation in terms of water pollution.

The numbers were compiled using data on chemical releases reported to the Environmental Protection Agency.

The study found that 1.1 million pounds of pollution were released into the James river alone.

“The James river is vital to the history and culture of Richmond and Virginia,” Environment Virginia Associate Caroline Kory is quoted as saying in the release. “We shouldn’t be tarnishing our legacy with toxic pollution.”

In order to curb toxic pollution, the groups is recommending the Obama Administration clarify guidelines in the Clean Water Act so they reference all 33,778 miles of  Virginia streams. Some argue a 2001 Supreme Court ruling narrowing guidelines within the Clean Water Act effectively removed protections for streams and wetlands.

Click here for more about the report.