The above mentioned goals and policies of the Clean Water Act suggest that Congress intended to create a partnership between the federal government, state governments, and the public to help abate pollution of the nation's waters. This intent is illustrated by the fact that permits issued to dischargers of pollutants into navigable waters can be issued by either the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) or a state agency. Unfortunately, the goal of public involvement is lost in "the confusion caused by this poorly drafted and astonishingly imprecise statute." The resulting inconsistent system forecloses some members of the public from participating in segments of the pollution abatement process. Virginia's implementation of the Clean Water Act serves as a prime example of this hidden inconsistency.
D. B. Keene,
The Inconsistency of Virginia's Execution of the NPDES Permit Program: The Foreclosure of Citizen Attorneys General From State and Federal Courts,
U. Rich. L. Rev.
Available at: http://scholarship.richmond.edu/lawreview/vol29/iss3/12