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Forty years ago, Congress enacted the Clean Water Act to end pollution of our rivers, lakes, and bays. But today, in the Northwest and nationwide, most water bodies still don't qualify as clean and new threats to clean water are outpacing the act's enforcers.
A significant source of water pollution, muddy runoff from logging roads, is stirring up controversy in the Northwest. A lawsuit that began in Oregon will be argued before the U.S. Supreme Court. Its ruling will determine exactly how the Clean Water Act applies to the hundreds of thousands of miles of logging and forest roads.
The 2012 candidates for Portland mayor, Charlie Hales and Jefferson Smith, were on OPB's Think Out Loud October 9 for a "candidate conversation.+ Candidates, Charlie Hales and Jefferson Smith, answered questions about the future of the city, from fluoride to foreclosures, development to diversity.
Environmental groups have sent a notice of intent to sue BNSF Railway and several coal companies for violations of the Clean Water Act.
In recent years, toxic algal blooms have been more potent and lasted longer. That has scientists trying to understand how our warming climate could be contributing to the problem.
"This is a tragedy for this community and our family personally. But it is also a wake-up call to say people beside agriculture have a water right," rancher Becky Hyde explained.
For a Medford home brewer, the famous jingle rings true. Steve Wyatt hiked to the headwaters of the Rogue River for 15 gallons of pristine water for a special batch.
In eastern Oregon, water is often the source of tension between farmers and environmentalists: the ongoing battle of fields versus fish. But now the two groups are working together.