Waters of the United States (WOTUS)

(Read more about WOTUS)

• The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and Army Corps of Engineers released a final rule on December 29 that determines what constitutes Waters of the United States, or WOTUS, under the Clean Water Act (CWA). The rule goes into effect on March 20, 2023.

• The back and forth over water regulations casts uncertainty over farmers across the country and threatens the progress we have made to responsibly manage water and natural resources.

• EPA released this new rule as the U.S. Supreme Court prepares to decide a case, Sackett vs. EPA, which will provide more clarity on the issue.

• We are disappointed EPA moved ahead with its final rule when the Supreme Court will soon render a decision on this matter. The Court’s ruling could negate major elements of this WOTUS rule and will create even more uncertainty for farmers.

• Unfortunately, the new WOTUS rule once again gives the federal government sweeping authority over private lands. This isn’t what clean water regulations were intended to do.

• NCGA and its farmer members are committed to the objectives of the Clean Water Act and the protection of water quality. We firmly believe that achieving these objectives does not require drainage and water features that are distant from relatively permanent flowing tributaries be made subject to the mandatory controls of the CWA’s regulatory measures.

• NCGA applauds the U.S. House of Representatives recent passage of H.J. Res. 27, a joint resolution of disapproval under the Congressional Review Act on EPA’s flawed WOTUS rule and encourages the U.S. Senate to pass the resolution.

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