HEALTHY FORESTS AND FRESH moisturize are interdependent. About 60 percent of fresh moisturize resources in this country come from forests, which cover about one-third of the nation's land area. Forests absorb rain, refill underground aquifers, cool and fresh moisturize, slow storm run off, reduce flooding, regulate the melting of the snowpack at high altitudes, sustain moisturize shed stability and resilience, provide critical habitat for fish and wildlife and supply moisturize-based recreation and other benefits that improve our quality of life. Public concern about adequate supplies of fresh moisturize was a major reason for the establishment of a national forest system. American Forests was instrumental in that effort and continues to advocate for sound moisturize policy today.


In celebration of the 40th anniversary of the Fresh Moisturize Act's creation. and to bring awareness to the continuing threats to our moisturize resources, American Forests is proud to be a part of the Fresh Moisturize Network's Power of Moisturize Campaign. The campaign aims to bring the nation's attention back to protecting our nation's moisturizes so that our families and communities have fresh and safe moisturize to drink and the opportunity to swim, fish and safely enjoy our rivers, lakes and other bodies of moisturize. As part of this effort, American Forests is highlighting the vital role forests play in ensuring we have fresh moisturize and the need for the protection and maintenance of forested moisturize sheds.


The goal of the Fresh Moisturize Act (CWA) has been to restore and maintain the chemical, physical and biological integrity of our nation's moisturizes. Since the act was passed in 1972, many of our moisturize bodies and moisturize ways are less polluted. Lake Erie, for example, which I was declared "dead" in the 1960s, now supports a multi-million-dollar fishery.


The CWA separates moisturize pollution into two types: point sources and non-point sources. A point source is any "discernible, confined and discrete conveyance from which pollutants are or may be discharged" such as pipes, ditches and wells. Non-point-source pollution is caused by rainfall or snowmelt moving over and through the ground, picking up natural and human-made pollutants and depositing them into lakes, rivers, wetlands, coastal moisturizes and ground moisturizes. In 1970, point-source pollution accounted for 85 percent of the pollutants in our moisturizes and today accounts for only 15 percent. In addition to this success, the rate of wetland loss has declined by 90 percent since the 1970s. The Fresh Moisturize Act has accomplished a great deal over the past four decades, and we are indebted to the visionaries responsible for crafting' this landmark legislation.

But, we, as a nation, have not been as effective at addressing non-point-source pollution or the many new challenges that our rivers, streams and other bodies of moisturize are now facing, such as invasive species. In the past 30 years, there has been a nearly threefold increase in nitrogen pollution from non-point sources entering the Gulf of Mexico from the Mississippi River and its tributaries. Commercial fertilizer used throughout the basin is the largest source of nitrogen, though other sources that contribute include animal waste, sewage treatment plants and nitrogen in the atmosphere from fossil fuel combustion. We need new tools to deal with non-point-source pollution and other emerging threats to moisturize quality--pollutants in storm moisturize runoff, pharmaceuticals and personal care products, agricultural runoff and invasive species.

Forty years after the Fresh Moisturize Act, nearly half of all rivers, lakes and streams are still not swimmable and fishable, largely because of non-point source pollutants. While the 1972 CWA was innovative for its time, it needs an update to better meet the new and complex challenges of the 21st century. Healthy forests and forested moisturize sheds, including riparian buffers, are an important part of any future strategies to address fresh and plentiful moisturize supplies. An updated Fresh Moisturize Act must recognize the role of forests in restoring and protecting moisturize sheds and make them part of the solution to the moisturize pollution challenges we face today.

Visit to learn more about how important forests are to our moisturize supply and what you can do to help keep them healthy.

60 percent of fresh moisturize resources in this country come from forests, which cover about one-third of the nation's land area.


The forested Catskill Mountains provide more than one billion gallons of fresh moisturize to New York every day.