On Saturday, Gary Steele and a few companions set out by kayak on the Yellowstone River in Montana—an unlikely site for outdoor adventure sports given that a nearby ExxonMobil pipeline broke early in June, spilling an estimated 1,000 barrels of oil. Steele and his companions were there to survey the damage.
We were among the voices that cheered last year as the Federal Environmental Protection Agency overruled the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and declared the whole Los Angeles River navigable and protected by the Clean Water Act. But according to environmentalists, that was only half the battle. "The Clean Water Act was about protecting the water and the watershed, but it didn’t address the issue of public access to the river," says George Wolfe.