NRDC Sewage Report Recognizes Need for Clean Water Trust Fund

Clean Water Advocacy - News Releases - February 19, 2004

For Immediate Release: February 19, 2004
Contact: Adam Krantz: 202/833-4651, AMSA

NRDC Sewage Report Recognizes Need for Clean Water Trust Fund
In their report titled “Swimming in Sewage” the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) has reached a pivotal conclusion: “The federal government should greatly increase its contribution to water infrastructure needs through a clean water trust fund. Just as a trust fund exists for highway and airport expenditures, the government should establish a trust fund for clean water.” It is highly newsworthy that the NRDC’s top recommendation in its Executive Summary is for a clean water trust fund — an initiative the Association of Metropolitan Sewerage Agencies (AMSA) has touted for some time. This marks an important opportunity for both the activist community and the nation’s public servants to work together for national water quality progress and the public good.

Significantly, NRDC has echoed what the American people already overwhelmingly support, a national trust fund for clean water infrastructure. According to a nationwide survey ( conducted this month by prominent pollster and communications expert, Frank Luntz, on behalf of AMSA, the American public agrees and overwhelmingly supports the idea of a clean water trust fund. Regardless of political views, gender, race or religion, the message is the same – there is tremendous support for a federal recommitment to water infrastructure funding. Findings from the survey show that:

The Congressional Budget Office, the Government Accounting Office and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency all agree there is a national funding gap estimated to be as high as $1 trillion for water infrastructure. The country requires dedicated national funding to help states and localities pay for the necessary sewerage and wastewater treatment systems that will guarantee clean water for future generations of Americans.

While AMSA strongly disagrees with the NRDC’s misleading statements regarding publicly owned treatment utility workers and on key environmental issues, namely overflows and blending, AMSA believes all stakeholders must continue to work together on this critical funding initiative. If you would like to speak further regarding these important clean water issues, please contact AMSA’s national office at the number above. The Luntz survey is available at

AMSA is a national trade association representing hundreds of the nation's publicly owned wastewater treatment utilities. AMSA members serve the majority of the sewered population in the United States and collectively treat and reclaim over 18 billion gallons of wastewater every day. AMSA members are environmental practitioners dedicated to protecting and improving the nation's waters and public health.

1816 Jefferson Place, Washington, DC 20036-2505 • 202.833.AMSA • 202.833.4657 FAX