Cattlemen Urge EPA to Wait for Supreme Court WOTUS Ruling
While the Biden Administration pushes for a swift completion of a new WOTUS rule, NCBA is urging the Environmental Protection Agency to pause their efforts until the Supreme Court makes a ruling.
NCBA’s Executive Director for National Resources and Executive Director of the Public Lands Council Kaitlynn Glover says they have asked the EPA to wait until the Supreme Court makes its ruling on the Sacket v. EPA case to avoid two rulemakings.
“We've urged the EPA and the Army Corps to pause their rulemaking. It has been such a significant whiplash for cattle producers, for private landowners, and even for the agency itself. A rule change on average every about three and a half years over the last several years because of the way this definition has changed. For the EPA to proceed with their rulemaking to sort of have a race to the finish line with the Supreme Court is not a responsible regulatory perspective at this stage.”
Glover says the EPA rule is currently under review by the White House Office of Management and Budget.
She adds the conservation work cattle producers do on a daily basis should not result in additional regulation for them. Maintaining those strong ag exemptions like stock ponds and farm ditches, she added, is critical in any final rule.
“We want it to be clear and consistent. We don't want this back and forth. But we also want to make sure that it's common sense, right? Don't regulate the things that are very clearly isolated, that very clearly don't have that relative permanence, right. don't regulate things like prairie potholes, don't regulate things that are ephemeral, the dry washes the things that appear in very limited circumstances.”
Glover says a WOTUS ruling needs to be one that support the work that cattle producers do to create and maintain healthy and safe water. The question of durability, she adds, is absolutely key.