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New rule may strip pollution protections from popular lakes

New rule may strip pollution protections from popular lakes

Created: September 27, 2020 09:28 AM

WILMINGTON, N.C. (AP) - Environmental activists say a little-noticed provision in a Trump administration rule could lead to pollution of some man-made lakes.

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The provision classifies reservoirs created to provide cooling waters for power plants as parts of “waste treatment systems," which aren't covered under the Clean Water Act. It was part of a significant rewrite of the law that took effect earlier this year.

Environmentalists challenging the rewrite in court say the provision strips protections from some large reservoirs that are popular fishing spots, such as Sutton Lake in Wilmington, North Carolina.

The utility industry says critics are exaggerating the effect of the new rule and that state laws will still protect the lakes.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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