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CHANGE! EPA moves to rescind Obama’s power-grabbing water rules

CHANGE! EPA moves to rescind Obama’s power-grabbing water rules

American farmers file this decision under “Winning”

Legal Insurrection readers will recall that the Environmental Protection Agency under Obama enacted one of the most flagrant regulatory power grabs in American history with the Waters of the United States rule (WOTUS).

WOTUS redefine how “waters of the United States” are subject to federal regulations under the Clean Water Act. Attempted enforcement of these rules led to farmers being fined astronomical amounts after installing stock pods that had no potential impact on navigable waters, nor posed any other significant environmental threat to the community.

President Trump ordered the EPA and the US Army Corps of Engineers to rescind or revise WOTUS this past February.  The two agencies are now officially moving to rescind this toxic set of rules.

The agencies say this action, when finalized, will provide certainty until they are able to reevaluate the definition of “waters of the United States.” They report that the proposed rule will be implemented “in accordance with Supreme Court decisions, agency guidance and longstanding practice.”

“We are taking significant action to return power to the states and provide regulatory certainty to our nation’s farmers and businesses,” according to EPA administrator Scott Pruitt. “This is the first step in the two-step process to redefine ‘waters of the U.S.,’ and we are committed to moving through this reevaluation to quickly provide regulatory certainty in a way that is thoughtful, transparent and collaborative with other agencies and the public.”

The proposed rule comes on the heel of a February presidential executive order that called for a review of WOTUS, followed by “rescinding or revising” as needed.

American farmers are thrilled with this development.

This is good news. There has just been so much uncertainty for growers,” said Theresia Gillie, a Hallock, Minn., farmer and president of her state Soybean Growers Association.

Daryl Lies, a Douglas farmer and president of the North Dakota Farm Bureau, said the announcement “is a big deal and a great day for agriculture.”

…WOTUS was unpopular with ag groups nationwide, but North Dakota ag producers were particularly critical of it. Sloughs, potholes and other small, often temporary bodies of water are common in the state, and North Dakota farmers worried about the impact of WOTUS.

“We (North Dakota) really are the last frontier, so to speak, when it comes to small bodies of water — be it sloughs or temporary poolings of water in our field,” Lies said. “The rule under the Obama administration basically was going to monitor every drop of water that hit your field if it did any kind of pooling for any amount of time.”

I sense the Trump administration is more interested in having farmers grow crops, raise livestock, and be profitable.

South Dakota Senator John Thune was also pleased, releasing this statement:

“WOTUS was just another example of Obama-era government overreach, which placed unnecessary burdens on South Dakota’s farmers and ranchers,” Thune said. “I’m glad EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt and his agency listened to the concerns of rural America and are taking steps to repeal this burdensome rule.”

Thune said WOTUS was developed by the Obama Administration’s EPA and the Corps and expanded the EPA’s federal jurisdiction and scope of waterbodies that are subject to Clean Water Act requirements.

He said it also targeted the Prairie Pothole Region, which includes nearly all of eastern South Dakota, with additional restrictions.

However, the eco-activists and progressives responded with the usual hyperbole and melodrama.  In fact, California Senator Kamala Harris (who seems to have forgotten about the Obama-EPA’s role in the Flint Water Crisis) tweeted:

The EPA under and the Army Corp of Engineers will be working on reevaluating definitions related to “Waters of the United States” for a better and more effective application of the Clean Water Act than was observed during Obama’s terms. For those interested, the pre-publication version of the proposed rule can be found by clicking HERE.

Meanwhile, American farmers are filing this under “Winning”.


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The more of this kind of sh1t that takes know, common sense things that actually end up benefitting the little guy, the harder and harder it is going to be for the media to sell the Democrat dream of impeachment.

IF we ever get an honest media and if they ever go back and do an honest review of the 8 year Trump Presidency then he will be right up there with the great American Presidents 🙂

    Tom Servo in reply to mailman. | June 28, 2017 at 9:00 am

    “IF we ever get an honest media…”

    My grandchildren should live so long!!!

      rdmdawg in reply to Tom Servo. | June 28, 2017 at 10:21 am

      Aye, do not seek validation in the media, you’ll never find it. Eliminate that criteria from your ‘winning’ matrix or you’ll forever be disappointed.

        notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital in reply to rdmdawg. | June 28, 2017 at 1:23 pm

        I don’t think there has ever been an “honest” MSM.

        There used to be openly biased MSM.

        If you study American history then you know that 100-150 years ago the MSM was upfront with their biases.

        For example, a newspaper might be named the “Yellow Dog Democrat Reporter” newspaper, or it might be named the “Grand Old Party of the Republic News.” So you knew exactly what SPIN they were sticking into their product then.

        It must have been in the 1930s Great Depression when the “media” decided to try and increase Sales by pretending to be neutral………….

    YellowSnake in reply to mailman. | June 28, 2017 at 12:21 pm

    “benefitting the little guy” Farmers have not been ‘little guys’ since the latter part of the last century.

    Some of those relatively ‘little’ farmers aren’t necessarily happy when the waste water of frackers pollutes their supply. Oh, well – they can water their crops and stock with the tears of over-regulation.

      Where has this happened? At most you’ll cite some unsubstantiated anecdotal tripe from a lib rag.

      Several state environmental agencies and the EPA have studied this and said it is not happening.

        YellowSnake in reply to Paul. | June 28, 2017 at 1:56 pm

        Sure, no farmer’s land was polluted by a wastewater pond that failed.

        I am sure the ND EPA is foaming at the mouth to investigate the most lucrative industry in the state.

        Is Scientific American a liberal rag?

          Milhouse in reply to YellowSnake. | June 28, 2017 at 3:35 pm

          ProPublica is, and this is their story. Scientific American simply reprinted it verbatim.

          YellowSnake in reply to YellowSnake. | June 28, 2017 at 6:38 pm

          Apparently you cannot read. The stuff in quotation marks is taken from the Pro-Publica article. The rest is Scientific American. There is a link at the bottom to the original article. Did you compare? Of course not.

          Besides, can you dispute anything in the original article. Simply dismissing it as a liberal rag is classic ‘ad hominem’. Give me some facts, boy.

          Besides why would SA reprint an article unless they believed it to be true. Do they have a reputation for printing false articles? Does SA have an axe to grind?

          Do you really believe that there aren’t bad actors who did pollute without regard to the environment or ethical actors
          who had accidents? Do you really believe that land contaminated by fracking waste can be easily or cheaply repaired? If you do, why don’t you buy it up, clean it and turn it over at a profit? I’ll bet there are people quite willing to sell you the land for a song.

          Don’t like that article? How about an article published in a journal by Duke U. Abstract in I’ll bet you don’t like them either. In fact you won’t like anything that doesn’t agree with what you wish to be true.

          I agree that no single article proves the point. But you have to be a fewl to not understand the dynamics of fracking and the need to get rid of enormous amounts waste. Do you really think it all gets handled ethically, safely and legally?

          They are having earthquakes in OK as a result of injecting waste from traditional wells. Gov. Fallon went with denial. Now she is at ‘we need to study it more’.

          Why don’t you ‘study it more’ before denying and stonewalling. Unlike you, I have watch Gasland AND Frack Nation. I have also read as much non-partisan literature as I can get because I have a real dilemma. I own land in the Marcellus Shale formation. On one hand, I can make significant money. On the other, I can keep my land as it is. If I am convinced that I can make money and continue to enjoy my land, I will be happy to take the money.

          YellowSnake in reply to YellowSnake. | June 28, 2017 at 7:21 pm

          So SA prints without vetting?

          I wonder why ND needed new regulations when everything was fine.

          Barry in reply to YellowSnake. | June 29, 2017 at 12:48 am

          “Is Scientific American a liberal rag?”

          Pro communist like yellowbelly.

          Barry in reply to YellowSnake. | June 29, 2017 at 12:51 am

          “On the other, I can…”

          You could hold your breath until dead and save us all from atmospheric pollution. That is the only decent contribution you could make to society.

          tbroberg in reply to YellowSnake. | June 29, 2017 at 4:39 am

          Sadly, yes, Scientific American has become a liberal rag. 🙁

          JustTom4Now in reply to YellowSnake. | July 7, 2017 at 2:27 pm

          Actually it is a word for word copy of a ProPublica article. Here is a link to the original…

          Heck, even SA credits ProPublica right below the title with the following text
          “By Nicholas Kusnetz, ProPublica on June 7, 2012 “

    We might not have a collectively honest media, but we have a lot of outlets to get news that is accurate.

    The difference is the ‘mainstream’ media are known liars and propagandists for the left. They are not the ‘honest media,’ and quickly being marginalized, much like Pravada did after obama – oops, – the corrupt commies – lost power in Russia.

Next Step – Democrat activists will find a Federal Judge in California who will declare that the EPA does not have the authority to alter or interpret EPA rules.

These Trump admin actions are nice, but they can be reversed when a dem becomes president. A coherent Republican party would be passing legislation to codify each of these changes.

    stevewhitemd in reply to Rick. | June 28, 2017 at 9:41 am

    So where are the Dakota congress-critters on this one? Seems like they’d be out in front to codify the new rules.

    Tom Servo in reply to Rick. | June 28, 2017 at 9:49 am

    “A coherent Republican party…”

    HA HA! You’re cute!!!

    Paul in reply to Rick. | June 28, 2017 at 10:01 am

    True. And a coherent electorate would be calling a Convention of States in order to codify changes that would prevent this type of abuse in the future.

Unfortunately it seems these rules take as long to withdraw as they did to decree in the first place. This proposed withdrawal of the insane 0bama rule must first be published in the Federal Register, and then go through the whole public comment nonsense, with multiple stages of review, which embedded D staff will ensure is a serious review rather than a charade as it was in the last administration, and in the meantime the 0bama rule will be enforced with full zeal in order to hurt as many people as possible before it goes away.

From the EPA site…

“The 2015 revised regulatory definition of “waters of the United States” has been stayed by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. In response to this stay, EPA, Department of Army, and the Army Corps of Engineers resumed nationwide use of the agencies’ prior regulations defining the term “waters of the United States.” On February 28, 2017, the President of the United States issued an Executive Order directing EPA and Department of the Army to review and rescind or revise the 2015 Rule. EPA, Department of Army, and the Army Corps of Engineers are in the process of reviewing the 2015 rule and considering a revised definition of “waters of the United States” consistent with the Executive Order.”

Here is another link to check out…

    Liz in reply to Liz. | June 28, 2017 at 11:47 am

    Just checked the EO – there was no deadline for the review of the WOTUS, but Pruitt did complete it within 4 months. A lot of the EOs do have review & report deadlines.

    This is the policy section of the EO –

    “Section 1. Policy. It is in the national interest to ensure that the Nation’s navigable waters are kept free from pollution, while at the same time promoting economic growth, minimizing regulatory uncertainty, and showing due regard for the roles of the Congress and the States under the Constitution.”

    I think an important point is that the policy is to show regard for the roles of Congress and the States. I suspect that Pruitt may request some type of law to back up his actions, but they might as well go through the rule making phase.

27 June 2017 – Mud Puddle Freedom Day!

notamemberofanyorganizedpolicital | June 28, 2017 at 1:26 pm

Ha ha ha.

Trump cut their water off!

“Get the EPA out of my driveway water puddle!”

OleDirtyBarrister | June 28, 2017 at 1:47 pm

The writing and editing on this site should be better than to call a new administrative rule and “Act,” as if it were legislation passed by Congress. The rule went too far, as every rule and effort to assert jurisdiction over WOTUS has. This is a little more on the “PROs” list for Trump to sate the voting base.

    Fixed. After a full day of dealing with the Toxic Substances Control Act, the Clean Air Act, and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, the fingers went on autopilot. Though I think your comment means you don’t see the development in the same positive light, I appreciate the contribution nonetheless.

As this “rule” has a direct impact on our family business and our livelihoods, it really was a no-brainer for me to “vote my conscious” and opt for the candidate who wasn’t likely to continue this unconstitutional land-grab.