Senate approves water infrastructure bill

(Photo: Geir Vika / Flickr)(Photo: Geir Vika / Flickr)

In an 83-14 vote, the Senate passed a bill Wednesday that will authorize several water infrastructure projects throughout the nation, McClatchy reported.

The $12.5 billion bill, the Water Resources Development Act, would allow the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to move forward with “flood control efforts, port improvements, wetlands restoration and coastal storm protection.”

In addition to the authorization of the water infrastructure projects, the bill includes provisions to speed up the environmental review process.

Critics of the current environmental review process have said it creates delays and increased costs in some water infrastructure projects. The language in the bill may remove those extra costs and delays.

However, the bill is receiving disapproval from some environmental groups and government leaders arguing that the environmental review language “would undercut longstanding environmental laws.”

The bill now moves to the House, where it faces uncertain odds.