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Clean Water Act 50th Anniversary

A gorgeous fall scene of a lake mirroring the brightly colored autumn leaves of the trees on its shore
Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy

Clean Water Act 50th Anniversary

Join EGLE in celebrating the 50th anniversary of one of the most important environmental laws in our nation’s history, the Federal Clean Water Act (CWA). On October 18th, 1972, the Federal Water Pollution Control Act of 1948 underwent significant amendments, and the resulting law became known as the CWA. The amended law established the basic framework for regulating the discharge of pollutants to lakes, rivers, streams, and wetlands and for protecting our water resources. Since its implementation, significant steps have been taken to meet the CWA’s goal to restore and maintain the chemical, physical, and biological integrity of the Nation's waters and the water quality in Michigan has significantly improved. As the department responsible for implementing the CWA in Michigan, please join EGLE in celebrating the CWA’s accomplishments over the last 50 years.

Summary of the Clean Water Act

50 Years of the Clean Water Act Webinar Series

foam from pollution swirling and floating on o a stream

An Overview of the Clean Water Act and its History and Significance in Michigan

Tuesday, October 4th from 11:00am -12:00

Due to growing public concern for the substantial pollution entering the nation’s waterways, the Federal Water Pollution Control underwent sweeping amendments in 1972 and the Clean Water Act was born. Join EGLE on this webinar as they provide a historical perspective on the events that lead to creation of the Clean Water Act, an overview of the important changes that that were implemented, and what this all meant for Michigan. Anyone with an interest in Michigan’s history and protecting our water resources is welcomed to attend.

Four fisherman fishing along the Houghton County Agate Beach Park

Success Stories of the Clean Water Act in Michigan

Tuesday, October 11th from 10:30am -12:00

In October of 1972, the Federal Clean Water Act was passed and established the basic framework for regulating the discharge of pollutants to lakes, rivers, streams, and wetlands and for protecting our water resources. As one of the most important pieces of environmental legislation in history, this resulted in significant improvements to water quality across Michigan. Please join staff at EGLE as they share many of the success stories that resulted over the last 50 years. Anyone with an interest in Michigan’s history and protecting our water resources is welcomed to attend.

Waterfowl In Flight

Remaining Challenges of the Clean Water Act in Michigan

Tuesday, October 18th from 11:00am -12:00

Join EGLE on the Federal Clean Water Act’s 50th birthday! Even though many of our nations environmental success stories can be directly attributed to the establishment of the Clean Water Act, this doesn’t mean that there still aren’t challenges ahead. This webinar will discuss those challenges we face in continuing to improve the quality of Michigan’s water resources and what Michigan needs to do to address them. Anyone with an interest in Michigan’s history and protecting our water resources is welcomed to attend.

A sample of photos available to vote for in ACWA's photo contest

Association of Clean Water Administrators photo contest

Participate in the Association of Clean Water Administrator’s photo contest. You can vote once a day, so check back often to see how your favorite is doing! Voting is open until 11:58 PM EST on September 30. The winning photos will be announced on ACWA’s website and Twitter on October 18th.

Cast your vote in ACWA's photo contest

50 Years of the Clean Water Act

The ACWA, the states, and EPA have been gathering stories from members across the United States about how they have used the CWA to protect and restore their water resources. 

Visit the 50 years of Clean Water Act Storymap to explore these successes