Home Builders Group is Newest Opponent to EPA's 'Pollution Diet' for Chesapeake Bay
The National Association of Home Builders has joined several other organizations opposed to new standards set by the EPA to regulate pollution in the Chesapeake Bay.
A national home builders’ lobbying firm has thrown its hat into the ring of organizations opposed to a federal action that seeks to limit Chesapeake Bay pollution.
Earlier this year, the Environmental Protection Agency set a limit on the amount of nitrogen and phosphorous pollution that will be allowed in the bay. The Total Maximum Daily Load has been commonly called a “pollution diet.”
EPA officials said they hope this new rule book for pollution will be a road map to cleaning up the bay.
In April, a host of agricultural organizations, including the American Farm Bureau Federation and the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau, joined together in filing a lawsuit against the EPA to block these changes.
The National Association of Home Builders is the newest member of that group.
In its complaint filed in Pennsylvania federal court on Friday, the home builders association calls the EPA’s limits “not legally enforceable” and wrote that the federal agency had overreached its bounds under the Clean Water Act.
Chesapeake Bay Foundation (CBF) President William C. Baker issued the following statement after Tuesday’s actions by the home builders' association:
“This lawsuit is yet another attempt by a special interest to avoid responsibility for their part of the total pollution loading,” he said. “Apparently, they want to maximize profit for their narrow interest and force everyone else to bear the burden of dirty, unsafe water.”
The CBF sought to intervene in the federal lawsuit in May, and was joined by a number of organizations, including the National Association of Clean Water Agencies, the Maryland Association of Clean Water Agencies, the Pennsylvania Municipal Authorities Association, and the Virginia Association of Clean Water Agencies.
By seeking “intervenor” status with the court, these agencies add their own arguments against those who would oppose the EPAs new rules.
This week, U.S. District Judge Sylvia Rambo also agreed upon a timeline for the complex lawsuit proceedings. A series of filings will occur throughout this year, with arguments being heard as late as April 2012 before a decision will be reached.