EPA’s Science Advisory Board (“SAB”) is reiterating its criticism of the EPA’s new Waters of the United States (“WOTUS”) rule claiming that the new rule fails to incorporate current science in its definition. The SAB notes in its commentary that the revised definition decreases protection for our nation’s waters, without providing a scientific basis in support of its restriction. The SAB criticism points out that the EPA and the Corps. finalized the new WOTUS after the SAB had finalized its commentary, but before it had been transmitted to either agency. For more information, contact Andy Thompson or Phillip Hoover.
The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas ruled on May 28, 2019, that the Obama administration erred when it crafted the Waters of the U.S. (“WOTUS”) regulation. The court found that the final version of WOTUS rule deviated too far from a previous draft version which deprived the public of an opportunity to submit public comment on the final rule. The ruling makes final a preliminary injunction issued last year blocking implementation of the 2015 rule. The injunction applies to Texas, Lousiana, and Mississippi. It is unlikely that the procedural error noted by the District Court will… Read more