EPA Adjusts Water Regulations, Rejects Public Comment

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) completed its revision of its “waters of the United States” (WOTUS) rule Tuesday to comply with the U.S. Supreme Court. It neglected, however, to allow for public comment on the adjustment and many are blasting the result.

In a unanimous May ruling in which liberals joined forces with conservative jurists, the high court backed a new test for deciding which properties fall under federal protection.

The decision, of course, incensed leftists who seek government control over every facet of people’s lives.

The May ruling came in the case of an Idaho couple who sought to build a home on their own property. The high court determined that the EPA surpassed its authority when it declared that the property contained wetlands and therefore could not be built upon.

The court supported a new rule establishing the Clean Water Act only applies to wetlands that are “as a practical matter indistinguishable from waters of the United States.”

President Joe Biden was quick to condemn the SCOTUS decision. “It puts our nation’s wetlands — and the rivers, streams, lakes, and ponds connected to them — at risk of pollution and destruction, jeopardizing the sources of clean water that millions of American[s]…rely on.”

Biden’s federal agencies, however, had no choice but to comply.

The EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers subsequently amended the WOTUS rule to remove parts that no longer applied after the high court ruling.

Some argue, however, that the new standards do not fully align with the Supreme Court’s ruling. There will be no public comment period to point out the possible infractions by the EPA.

Sen. John Boozman (R-AR) criticized the agency for its failure to follow the standard established by the high court. “EPA’s updated WOTUS rule remains deeply flawed and ignores many SCOTUS concerns. New language, same result.”

Boozman further argued the Biden administration “continues to threaten Arkansas farmers, ranchers, and landowners’ livelihoods in pursuit of an unconstitutional policy goal.”

Daren Bakst of the Competitive Enterprise Institute Center for Energy and Environment said the EPA knew when it implemented the new rule in January that it would not hold up to judicial scrutiny.

Applying lipstick to the rule, he added, “doesn’t change the fact that it is still broken.”