The Navigable Waters Protection Rule: Definition of "Waters of the United States" (Final)
Apr. 21, 2020
EPA and the Army are publishing a final rule defining the scope of waters federally regulated under the Clean Water Act. The Navigable Waters Protection Rule is the second step in a comprehensive, two-step process intended to review and revise the definition of "waters of the United States" consistent with the Executive Order signed on 28 February 2017, "Restoring the Rule of Law, Federalism, and Economic Growth by Reviewing the `Waters of the United States' Rule." Once effective, it replaces the rule published on 22 October 2019. This final rule implements the overall objective of the Clean Water Act to restore and maintain the integrity of the nation's waters by maintaining federal authority over those waters that Congress determined should be regulated by the Federal government under its Commerce Clause powers, while adhering to Congress' policy directive to preserve States' primary authority over land and water resources. This final definition increases the predictability and consistency of Clean Water Act programs by clarifying the scope of "waters of the United States" federally regulated under the Act. This rule is effective on 22 June 2020. POC is Michael McDavit, Oceans, Wetlands, and Communities Division, Office of Water (4504-T), EPA, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Washington, DC 20460; tel: (202) 566-2465; email: CWAwotus@epa.gov.
(Federal Register: 21 April 2020 [Rule] pages 22250-22342).