What’s Next for Biden’s WOTUS Rule?

Brian GermanAgri-Business, Water, WOTUS Act


Questions linger as federal officials try to rework the Waters of the United States (WOTUS) Rule. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has indicated that it will update the WOTUS rule by September. At the same time, industry groups are taking legal action in an attempt to withdraw the rule altogether. The Supreme Court’s decision in Sackett v. EPA decision significantly limited EPA authority under the Clean Water Act. Now ag groups including the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), American Farm Bureau Federation, and more than a dozen others are asking the courts to completely vacate the current rule.

“A full rewrite of the Biden Administration’s WOTUS definition is the only path to comply with the Sackett decision,” NCBA Chief Counsel Mary-Thomas Hart said in a press release. “NCBA is seeking summary judgement in our lawsuit against the Biden WOTUS rule and urging the Southern District of Texas to strike the rule from the books.”

Implementation of the WOTUS rule has already been temporarily stalled in 27 states after a series of other lawsuits. Responding to the various court decisions, EPA has noted the agency remains “fully committed to ensuring that all people have access to clean, safe water. We will never waver from that responsibility.” The Army Corps of Engineers and EPA are reportedly going to be “interpreting ‘waters of the United States’ consistent with the Supreme Court’s decision” moving forward.

Brian German
Ag News Director / AgNet West