U.S. Virgin Islands Wins Approval for Pollution Control Program
Tough Challenge of Protecting America's Coastal Waters
the U.S. Virgin islands received final NOAA/EPA approval on a coastal
pollution program created to combat land-based sources of runoff primarily
from urban sources. This is the tenth such program to win approval. Polluted
runoff, also know as nonpoint source pollution, is a major concern throughout
the nation, especially in coastal areas and watershed that feed into sensitive
sanctuaries and coastal environments. It is caused when rain picks up
pollutants on land and deposits them into coastal waters, lakes, rivers,
and even underground drinking water aquifers.
NOAA staff key to facilitating final approval include Jewel M. Griffin-Linzey,
coastal management specialist and federal liaison to the Virgin Islands
Coastal Nonpoint Pollution Control program. Peyton Robertson and Nathalie
Peter, both of the National Ocean Service, conducted the threshold review.
Virgin Islands now joins ranks with Puerto Rico and eight states, each
of which has received $250,000 for finalizing approved plans. The states
include Maryland, Rhode Island, California, Puerto Rico, Virginia, Pennsylvania,
New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and Delaware. Conditional approval has been
granted to the plans of 33 more coastal states.
The coastal nonpoint pollution program was authorized by Congress in fiscal
year 1990 as part of the National Coastal Zone Management program. The
program is a unique and voluntary partnership of federal, state and territorial
governments. It works as a roadmap for addressing coastal runoff pollution
Courtesy of U.S. Virgin Islands Coastal Management Program, Department
of Planning and Natural Resources.