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Tell Your Senators to Support Green Infrastructure!

Tell Your Senators to Support Green Infrastructure!
Last week Senators Udall (D-NM) and Whitehouse (D-RI) introduced the Green Infrastructure for Clean Water Act of 2010 (S. 3561) the Senate companion to H.R. 4202 introduced by Representative Edwards (D-MD) last year.  These companion bills would provide critical support for green infrastructure strategies, improving our ability to effectively manage polluted runoff and sewage overflows while relieving pressure on aging infrastructure.  Passage of the Green Infrastructure for Clean Water Act would provide benefits beyond improving our nation’s ability to manage our clean water and drinking water including: increased research and development, job creation across diverse sectors, cost savings, and environmental economic benefits.
Below is a sign-on letter of support for the Senate bill.  We would like to include all organizations that signed on to the House support letter, which we circulated in March.  To see if your group signed on to the House letter, visit http://www.cleanwaternetwork.org/sites/default/files/CWN%20HR%204202%20Sign-On%20FinalApril1_0.pdf.
We have also posted the Senate letter on our website http://www.cleanwaternetwork.org/sites/default/files/CWN%20S%203561%20Sign-On%20draft_0.pdf.  If you would like to either remove your name from this letter or add your name, email jenniferpeters@cwn.org by Wednesday, July 21st.  Please include your title and the name of your organization in your email.
For more information on the bill and the issue, provided by Network member organization American Rivers, click http://www.cleanwaternetwork.org/sites/default/files/S%203561%20fact%20sheet%20draft%207-8-10.pdf.
Thank you for signing on to CWN’s S. 3561 support letter.  With your help we can make this important piece of legislation a reality!
Dear Senator:
We are writing to voice our strong support for the Green Infrastructure for Clean Water Act of 2010 (S. 3561) and to urge you to join in supporting this legislation as a co-sponsor. The Clean Water Network (CWN) is a national coalition of more than 1,200 local, state and national non-profit public interest organizations, representing more than 5 million people working together to protect the health, safety and quality of our nation’s waters. It is the largest advocacy coalition in the country working to protect our nation’s water resources.
Introduced by Senators Tom Udall (D-NM) and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-CT), this bill would reduce polluted stormwater runoff by encouraging advances in America’s understanding and use of green infrastructure techniques. By using techniques such as permeable pavement, green roofs, rain gardens, and wetland preservation, green infrastructure protects, restores, and replicates the natural hydrology of the landscape to reduce stormwater runoff, flooding and sewer overflows. Moreover, green infrastructure techniques provide multiple benefits to communities, including improved air quality, decreased urban heat island effect, reduced energy use to heat and cool buildings, and a more consistent water supply.
The Green Infrastructure for Clean Water Act provides critical support for green infrastructure projects across the country. The bill would:
Establish up to five Centers of Excellence for Green Infrastructure across the country to research and develop best management practices and policy recommendations; Invest in planning, development, and implementation of community-based green infrastructure projects over four years; and Establish a green infrastructure program within the Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Water to promote the use of green infrastructure and provide technical assistance to states, local governments, and the private sector. The nation’s water infrastructure is aging, overused, underfunded, and threatened by the impacts of a changing climate. Green infrastructure offers a 21st century alternative to conventional water infrastructure that has both the flexibility and economic viability to address today’s challenges of polluted runoff, flooding, and sewer overflows.
We would greatly appreciate your leadership on this issue and urge you to cosponsor S. 3561 and promote the green infrastructure approach to water management from the community level to the national level.
Sincerely,
undersigned organizations