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Group sues EPA over invasive species regulations

By JOHN FLESHER
AP Environmental Writer

TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. – An environmental group is suing the federal government, seeking tougher rules dealing with ballast water discharges from ships to prevent more invasive species from reaching U.S. waterways.

The National Wildlife Federation says Wednesday it has filed the lawsuit with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Washington, D.C., circuit. It targets a permit issued by the Environmental Protection Agency in April that regulates discharges from commercial vessels.

Many of the exotic species that have wreaked havoc in the Great Lakes and ocean coastal areas in recent decades are believed to have arrived in ballast water dumped by ships that had taken on the water in overseas ports.

The permit imposes standards for cleansing ballast water before it’s released. But the lawsuit contends the rules aren’t strong enough.

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