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CCE IN THE NEWS

Source: CT Post

Long Island Sound groups happy with EPA plan

BY BILL CUMMINGS

Posted: February 23, 2016
Originally Published: February 23, 2016

A new commitment by federal regulators to further reduce damaging nitrogen flowing into Long Island Sound is prompting a coalition of environmental groups to back off legal challenges designed to force further action.

“Last summer we witnessed massive fish kills, turtle die-offs, toxic tides and closed beaches,” said Adrienne Esposito, executive director of Citizens Campaign for the Environment. “We cannot let this become the ‘new norm.’”

In response to petitions and legal action from CCE, Save the Sound and other groups, the federal Environmental Protection Agency has agreed to consider new nitrogen limits for sections Long Island Sound, expanding an ongoing effort to reduce the amount of nitrogen entering the waterway by more than 58 percent.

Nitrogen comes from many sources, including sewage treatment plants, run off from fertilizers and pesticides and private septic systems. It enters the Sound directly from the shoreline or through rivers and streams.

Excessive nitrogen creates a condition caused hypoxia, or reduced oxygen levels, and it can kill fish and choke off marine life and underwater grasses.