CLF Fights Permits Allowing Increased Pollution into Lake Champlain

Says permits show disregard for community health, legal obligation

October 23, 2017 (MONTPELIER, VT) – Conservation Law Foundation (CLF) filed four notices of appeal today with the Vermont Superior Court, challenging the Agency of Natural Resources’ recent issuance of wastewater treatment facility permits in Alburgh, Montpelier, South Burlington, and St. Albans. Despite phosphorous limits recently set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that call for a ratcheting down of pollution, these permits allow for dramatic increases in the phosphorous pouring into Lake Champlain. CLF’s suit alleges that defying these limits constitutes a violation of the federal Clean Water Act.

“The last thing Lake Champlain needs is more pollution, yet that is exactly what state officials are allowing with these permits,” said CLF Vermont Director Christopher Kilian. “The cavalier attitude with which our leaders are willfully defying their obligation to protect our waters is indefensible, irresponsible, and illegal. Lake Champlain is at a critical juncture, and if these permits are allowed to stand, the frequent blue-green algae outbreaks and beach closures we’ve seen this fall will be just a precursor of things to come.”

Copies of CLF’s four filings are available here.

CLF experts are available for further comment.