April 11, 2021

Volume XI, Number 101

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April 09, 2021

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The EPA and Army Propose to Delay WOTUS Rule until 2020

Last Thursday, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) proposed delaying implementation of the rule defining the term “Waters of the U.S.” (WOTUS) for two years. This is one of many moving pieces involving the WOTUS rule at this time, and another step by the agencies under the Trump administration towards maintaining the status quo and ensuring the 2015 rule is not implemented.

The EPA and Corps intended the WOTUS rule, promulgated in 2015, to define the federal government’s jurisdiction over water bodies under the Clean Water Act.  80 Fed. Reg. 37054 (Jun. 29, 2015). Upon promulgation, the rule was challenged by environmental groups and regulated entities alike. The litigation remains pending before the Supreme Court and the Sixth Circuit. In the meantime, the WOTUS rule is subject to a nationwide stay.

According to the agencies, postponing the rule will provide regulatory certainty while the agencies finish the process of repealing and replacing the WOTUS rule, which is currently underway. See our July 27, 2017 blog post for a more detailed explanation of the repeal and replacement process. The EPA and Corps will accept comments for up to 21 days after publication in the Federal Register.

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© 2021 Schiff Hardin LLPNational Law Review, Volume VII, Number 325
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About this Author

Amy Antoniolli Environmental Attorney Schiff Hardin
Counsel

Amy Antoniolli is an environmental lawyer with broad experience in administrative and enforcement-related issues. She advises clients on compliance with the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, RCRA, CERCLA, and the Illinois Environmental Protection Act. She also works on property remediation projects pursued under state and federal cleanup programs. She advises renewable energy clients as well, reviewing siting and operating requirements for wind and waste to energy facilities.

An amiable yet no-nonsense counselor, Amy puts her prior experience to work for her clients. A former adviser...

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