“Amid signs that the Environmental Protection Agency might not step in and force Pennsylvania to reduce the pollution it sends downstream to the Chesapeake Bay, Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan demanded Wednesday that the state attorney general file lawsuits against the agency and the commonwealth.
The call to action comes after more than a year of discussion and veiled threats over potential legal action, spurred by surges of pollution and debris that washed down the Susquehanna River in 2018. A push for accountability deepened last month when the EPA largely signed off on a Pennsylvania plan to improve water quality over the next five years — even though environmentalists and officials in Maryland and Virginia officials said it was not enough to restore the Chesapeake by a 2025 deadline.
But fears of a backsliding on the bay’s recovery have heightened in recent days after an EPA official suggested that pollution-reduction targets agreed upon by six states, the District of Columbia and the EPA in 2010 are merely “aspirational” goals and not “enforceable” standards.”