The US’ independent beer industry has called for a safeguarding of federal funds for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as the country prepares to celebrate one of its biggest public holidays of the year.
It’s estimated that consumers will spend $1 billion on beer this Independence Day, which is to be celebrated across the country tomorrow.
But brewers have warned that cutting the budget of the EPA will affect the ability of states and cities to monitor and enforce water quality effectively. It’s a key foundation of the beer industry, which uses sanitary water to ensure quality in the brewing process.
Tim Patton, founder of the Saint Benjamin Brewing Company in Philadelphia, said: “Brewers depend on consistent, quality water to make our beer. With beer being made up of about 90% water, the programmes that maintain safe water around the nation are critical to us – and to everyone who swims, fishes or just drinks water.”
The call to protect EPA funding is being led by Defend Our Future, a non-profit organisation that tries to engage young people with the political process.
Defend Our Future called on members of congress to reject the proposed 31% cut in EPA funding put forward by the Trump administration.
“The administration’s proposed cuts in EPA funding threaten our brews and our businesses,” said Bob Szuter, owner of Wolf’s Ridge Brewing in Columbus, Ohio. “Clean water is something we rely on, and expect our governments to protect.”
According to the EPA itself, the agency awards over $4 billion in funding for grants and other assistance agreements every year.
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