Vermont joins states fighting EPA clean water rule rollback

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MONTPELIER, Vt. (WCAX) Vermont has signed on with a group of state's fighting the EPA's rollback of clean water protections.

Led by New York's attorney general, the group of eight states and Washington D.C. is challenging the Trump administration's proposal to repeal the Clean Water Rule. The 2015 rule was an effort to clarify legal protection for wetlands and streams that feed into larger water bodies.

In Vermont, it resulted in the EPA last year adopting stricter limits on the amount of phosphorus and other pollution allowed to enter Lake Champlain. Pollution that causes the kind of toxic blue-green algae blooms that closed some Burlington-area beaches in the past week.

The coalition of attorneys general argue that the proposed repeal is "arbitrary and capricious and not in accordance with law," and that EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt's efforts to get rid of the rule when he was Oklahoma's attorney general, make his current actions illegal.

Pruitt, along with other GOP lawmakers, argue that the rule is as an example of federal overreach.