Clarity coming on WOTUS, NCBA thinks not

The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association says the only thing clear about the Waters of the United States rule is its uncertainty. 

During a committee hearing with the House last week, the Environmental Protection Agency’s administrator held firm on the decision to release a finalized WOTUS rule ahead of the Supreme Court decision, saying it was meant to clear up confusion.

Ethan Lane, vice president of government affairs, with the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association tells Brownfield the timing of the rule is disappointing.

“We know they did it on purpose, no one is unclear about that,” he says.  “But rushing to get a marker out there so you can say, ‘well we’ve got this rule out here first, not deal with it,’ feels punitive, it feels unnecessary, and it really fails to read the room.”

He says a new saga will begin when a decision is released this summer.

“Trying to figure out based on what they come back with what that means for EPA’s new rule, whether it can stand as it’s currently written, or whether they’re going to need to once again go back to the drawing board to craft something that conforms to the Supreme Court’s view of this,” he says.

The EPA has said it plans to adjust its finalized rule following the Court’s decision.

Brownfield interviewed Lane during the Michigan Beef Expo.

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