As an amendment to House Bill 1030, the Senate passed its budget bill last week and with it, used a machete to demonstrate their view of the state’s efforts to reduce nutrient pollution to the Neuse and Pamlico estuaries as well as Jordan and Falls lakes. They offer their opinion in items 3 & 4 on page 111, stating:
(3) Existing nutrient management strategies have shown little to no improvement in water quality, have created an increased regulatory and economic burden in the billions of dollars to the State, its municipalities, and its citizens, and have rendered thousands of acres of public and private property useless.
(4) Instead of continuing a regulatory solution that is not improving, nor may ever improve, water quality standards, a new comprehensive management strategy that includes in situ treatment of impaired water bodies must be developed to replace the current flawed, economically irresponsible, and scientifically unjustified approach.
I touch on the benefits of the nutrient strategies both in terms of water quality and financially in previous posts. Having previously passed funding of water churning devices that failed to improve water quality in Jordan Lake, the Senate doesn’t look ready to encourage responsible, less polluting development practices. Instead, they appear committed to a strategy that’s anything but responsible when it comes to making polluters better control their polluting practices. Let’s hope the NC House is able to exorcise these budget bill elements that threaten the hard-fought gains from implementation of the nutrient strategies in the Neuse and Pamlico estuaries.