Texas Water Will Suffer Under Plan to Lower Standards

This is an excerpt from the published online post to statesman.com by Thomas O. McGarity:

“The recent proposal by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality [TCEQ] to downgrade the state’s water quality standards for most of the surface water in the state should trouble all who believe they have a right to swim, fish or simply wade in a cool Texas stream without the risk of contracting a gruesome waterborne disease.

As recently reported in the American-Statesman, TCEQ plans to change the standards for the vast majority of Texas rivers and streams from the current “contract recreation” designation, which allows only 126 colonies of E. coli bacteria, to new designations that would allow 206 colonies in some “swimmable” waters and up to 630 colonies in waters used primarily for fishing and boating.

The move is supported by the Texas dairy industry and by some cities that are having difficulties controlling their sewage discharges. The Texas Association of Dairymen argues that without the changes dairy farmers might have to build fences to keep their cattle away from rivers, thereby losing valuable acreage. The cities warn that they might have to charge higher rates for sewage treatment.”

To continue reading, please visit:  http://www.statesman.com/opinion/mcgarity-texas-water-will-suffer-under-plan-to-392013.html