Ohio Craft Brewers Association Opposes Proposed Repeal of Ohio River Water Quality Standards

The Ohio Craft Brewers Association (OCBA) is opposed to the Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission’s (ORSANCO) proposed action to eliminate water quality standards for the Ohio River. Ohio breweries rely on clean, fresh water as a basic ingredient in beer production; cutting the existing standards would threaten the quality and safety of Ohio beer. Many small breweries cannot afford expensive investments to treat water on site, which would damage Ohio’s growing craft beer industry, cost the state millions of dollars in economic impact and threaten thousands of jobs.

Earlier this year, ORSANCO proposed a measure that would eliminate 122 standards for pollutants from the Ohio River. An original vote was proposed for Oct. 4, 2018, but the commission voted to delay making a decision until the overwhelming number of public comments and concerns could be addressed.

OCBA represents more than 200 breweries throughout the state: the craft brewing industry employs more than 15,000 Ohioans and has an impact of $2.6 billion on the Ohio economy. OCBA’s Sustainability Committee, formed in 2018, is the trade organization’s outreach arm committed to environmental stewardship at the individual business level and industry-wide. OCBA supports legislative and regulatory action that protects Ohio’s rivers, lakes, and waterways which supply the clean, fresh water essential for a thriving craft beer industry.

OCBA urges the ORSANCO commissioners to reconsider their proposed action, vote to keep these 122 pollution standards in place and support the craft brewing industry in Ohio and other states that rely on water from the Ohio River.


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