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The NEP was authorized under the 1987 Amendments to the Clean Water Act to improve estuarine waters, habitats and living resources by working with partners and the public. Estuaries are places where rivers meet the sea. Under NEP EPA develops plans for attaining or maintaining water quality in an estuary. This includes protection of public water supplies and the protection and propagation of a balanced, indigenous population of shellfish, fish, and wildlife, and allows recreational activities, in and on water, requires that control of point and nonpoint sources of pollution to supplement existing controls of pollution.

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Last Updated: July 31, 2017