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Water Management Associations
40 Years of the Clean Water Act
This country’s primary law governing water pollution, the Clean Water Act, celebrated 40 years of service on October 18th, 2012. A history of water quality disasters reveals the reason we celebrate the Act today and gives rise to new questions about issues facing the future of clean water today.

At least 13 fires were reported on the Cuyahoga River between 1868 and 1969, the surface was covered with a brown oily film, heavy oil floating in slicks, and debris and trash caught up in the unsightly mess. It as however not the only polluted river in the United States, most major cities dumped raw sewage directly into their rivers prior to the Clean Water Act.

Boston Harbor was considered a cesspool, Lake Erie was declared biologically dead, and the Potomac River was called a “national disgrace” by President Lyndon B. Johnson.

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Ecology Shapes Evolution and Evolution can Shape Ecology - Some 300 to 500 years ago the damming of the Connecticut streams stranded some alewife herring in inland lakes which resulted in changes of the alewife and well as critters that feed on them such as water fleas.

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