Washington—Earlier this year the Environmental Protection Agency released a proposal that eliminates the 2015 Waters of the US rule and allows the agency to develop a rule that does not create a huge regulatory burden for agriculture.
The public comment period deadline on the WOTUS rule closed on Sept. 27. The nations agricultural sector widely supported rescinding the 2015 rule and encouraged EPA to re-propose a better solution. American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall says its time to ditch the rule once and for all.
“As today’s deadline for comments on rescinding the fatally flawed Waters of the U.S. rule is upon us, Farm Bureau applauds the Environmental Protection Agency’s formal proposal to ditch the rule. We do not stand alone in our assessment that the WOTUS rule was much more about seizing land control than about protecting water, and in official comments today we joined several broad-based coalitions expressing those sentiments. It is clear that this WOTUS rule violated the law while creating legal risk and enormous uncertainty for farmers, ranchers and others who work with the land, said Duvall.
The President of the nation's largest Agricultural organization adds that the rule lacked common sense and clarity.
“It is time for EPA to take the final step of repealing the WOTUS rule. The agency should then move forward with a new rule that provides farmers, ranchers, towns, states and small businesses with clarity and certainty they need. The new rule should rely on common-sense directives that don’t require teams of consultants and lawyers to navigate a maze of federal regulations. We will follow this process closely over the coming months to ensure that the new rule is based on law, that waters are protected and that farmland can be farmed.”