EPA Unveils Draft Guidance for Clarifying the Scope of the Clean Water Act


Source: SOCMA
Related Topics: Clean Water Act

Yesterday, EPA unveiled its draft guidance to clarify the scope of the Clean Water Act (CWA).  This draft guidance has received significant attention in recent months, including the attention of a large group of members of Congress, because it may potentially expand the CWA’s scope, in the wake of two Supreme Court decisions that have created confusion over when certain waters are subject to CWA requirements.

In fact, industry and that group of  170 lawmakers have been very critical about the looming guidance, arguing that  any  CWA jurisdiction changes should be pursued through a formal rulemaking process.  In response, EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers have now agreed to launch a rulemaking to clarify when discharges to isolated wetlands and other marginal waters are subject to Clean Water Act requirements.  (The draft guidance is a first step in that effort.)

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