ILTA Monthly Newsletter

Environmental Groups Launch Assault on WOTUS Rule

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A group of environmental organizations have launched a legal assault on the Trump administration's Navigable Waters Protection Rule, popularly known and the Waters of the United States rule. Finalized last week, the new rule seeks to define what wetlands and streams qualify for protection under the Clean Water Act. The groups have filed suit claiming that the new CWA will have a devastating effect on U.S. water quality.

EPA's regulation significantly narrows the law's reach compared with the previous rule from the Obama administration. Up to half of the country's wetlands would lose federal protections, as would 18% of streams. The groups claim the Trump rule relies on an "unreasonably narrow interpretation" of the law.

EPA says that the rule is intended to provide regulatory certainty to landowners after decades of confusing legal precedents, including from the Supreme Court.


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