Mar 26, 2014
EPA, Army Corps of Engineers propose rule to Clean Water Act

The EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers jointly released a proposed rule to clarify protection under the Clean Water Act (CWA).

The proposed rule clarifies protection for streams and waters. Proposed definitions of waters will apply to all CWA programs. The proposal does not protect any new types of waters that have not historically been covered under the CWA.

The proposed rule clarifies that under the CWA:

1) Most seasonal and rain dependent streams are protected.
2) Wetlands near rivers and streams are protected.
3) Other types of waters may have more uncertain connections with downstream water and protection will be evaluated through a case specific analysis of whether the connection is or is not protecting similarly situated waters in certain geographic areas or adding to the categories of waters protected without case specific analysis.

The proposed rule preserves CWA exemptions and exclusions for agriculture.

The proposal will be open for public comment for 90 days from publication in the Federal Register.

You can read more about the proposal at this EPA site.

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