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Over the past two years, D.C., Maryland, Virginia, and other states that drain into the Chesapeake Bay have been developing plans on how to reduce water pollution. They're trying to meet goals set by the Obama administration and the Environmental Protection Agency.
The states are now reporting the details of what they'll do.
"For wastewater, they're putting more stringent controls on," explains Jim Edward, deputy director of the EPA's Chesapeake Bay program. "In stormwater, they're doing a better job of capturing stormwater using new technologies and new approaches to do that. And then in the agricultural area, it's using things like cover crops in winter, forest buffers along streams, putting fences up to keep cattle out of streams."
The EPA will spend the next few weeks determining whether the plans are up to par, and states and the District will have to meet progress milestones every two years.
Now that the details are in place, the next challenge will likely be how states, the EPA and the federal government will pay for the plans.