Fifty Percent of U.S. Waterways Impaired by Pollution: Report

A half century after the passage of the federal Clean Water Act, 50 percent of U.S. river and stream miles are so polluted that they are classified as “impaired,” a new report has found.

Not only are 50 percent of these waterways impaired, but so too are 55 percent of lakes, ponds and reservoirs and 25 percent of bays, estuaries and harbors — meaning that none of these resources are suitable for public uses, according to the report.