The proposal would virtually eliminate annual Great Lakes Restoration Initiative (GLRI) funding, slashing it from $300 million to $10 million among other cuts that would altogether reduce the EPA’s total budget by a quarter.
The Great Lakes funding cut is the largest total dollar reduction on a list that includes major cuts to climate change programs, restoration funding for Puget Sound and Chesapeake Bay, research into chemicals that disrupt human reproductive and developmental systems, enforcement of pollution laws and funding for Brownfield cleanups.
The plan also includes a $13 million cut in compliance monitoring, which the EPA uses to ensure the safety of drinking water systems. State grants for beach water quality testing would also be eliminated.
Other EPA cuts in the plan include a 30 percent reduction in state and local air grants from 2017 levels, a 24 percent cut to the overall budget, decrease of staffing by 19 percent, elimination of the Indoor Air Radon Program and state indoor radon grants, elimination of the Environmental Justice office and a reduction of environmental justice funds by more than 77 percent from 2017 levels, according to the National Association of Clean Air Agencies.
Hey, remember when water pollution was so bad that rivers caught fire?