Waters of the United States rule

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The "Waters of the United States" rule (WOTUS) grants the EPA jurisdiction of over even the smallest bodies of water, whether anyone is trying to get clean drinking water from it or not. It's a vast expansion of jurisdiction over the Clean Water Rule, and farmers and industry are at odds with environmentalists over it.

Paul Ryan complains that

The rule would give Washington, DC bureaucrats unprecedented powers to regulate virtually any place that water flows or accumulates anywhere in the United States. It would allow regulation of a host of land features, including minor wetlands and typically dry streambeds that only occasionally carry storm water.[1] - May 12, 2015

President Trump observed:

The Clean Water Act says that the EPA can regulate 'navigable waters,' meaning waters that truly affect interstate commerce. But a few years ago, the EPA decided that 'navigable waters' can mean nearly every puddle or every ditch on a farmer’s land, or anyplace else that they decide ..."[2]

Rescission of 2015 Clean Water Rule

On June 27, 2017, the Trump Administration proposed a rule would to recodify the identical regulatory text that was in place prior to the 2015 Clean Water Rule, and which is currently in place as a result of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit's ruling to stay the 2015 rule. This rescission will not change the current practice, which was in effect prior to the 2015 Clean Water Rule, with respect to defining the waters of the United States.

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt announced this rescission of the Obama Administration's regulation.

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References

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