October 17, 2021

Volume XI, Number 290

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The End of the (Most Recent) WOTUS Beginning?

Lara Beaven, of Inside EPA, reports this afternoon that EPA has shared with the White House Office of Management and Budget what EPA management hopes will be a "durable" definition of "waters of the United States."  Such a "durable" definition would end what is the longest running controversy in environmental law over the reach of the Federal Clean Water Act.   

As an aside, no one is following this quixotic quest more closely than Ms. Beaven.

This means we could see an EPA regulatory proposal late this year or early next year at which time we may have a better sense whether this EPA proposal will fare any better than the two EPA definitions that preceded it.

Many of us are convinced Mr. Shakespeare's line about past being prologue answers this question.

But, since Congress still has no interest in cleaning up a mess it created almost fifty years ago, let's hope this time will be the charm.   

"EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers sent their draft proposal for a new definition of “waters of the United States” (WOTUS), to the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for pre-publication review on Oct. 12, according to OMB’s website."

©1994-2021 Mintz, Levin, Cohn, Ferris, Glovsky and Popeo, P.C. All Rights Reserved.National Law Review, Volume XI, Number 286
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About this Author

Jeffrey R. Porter, Environmental Attorney, Mintz Levin, Risk Analysis Lawyer
Member

Jeff leads the firm’s Environmental Law Practice. He is also a member of the firm’s Policy Committee. For 23 years, he has advised clients regarding complex environmental regulatory compliance and permitting issues, including issues relating to air and water discharges and hazardous waste storage and disposal. In 2011 and 2012, the firm received the Acquisition International Legal Award for “US Environmental Law Firm of the Year.” The awards celebrate excellence and reward firms, teams and individuals for their contribution to client service, innovation and commitment to quality.

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