Regulators at the Environmental Protection Agency have launched a wide-ranging crackdown on pollution in the Chesapeake Bay region, warning five states that they will face punitive rules and rising wastewater bills if they continue to neglect their responsibilities. The move is a shift for the EPA, which failed to punish states that missed previous deadlines for cleaning up the bay. "There's good reason to hope that, decades from now, we'll look back on [this] as a watershed moment in the protection of the bay," says one environmental advocate.

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