Soybean farmers “disappointed” with WOTUS tweak

The American Soybean Association says the amended Waters of the United States rule does not provide more clarity for farmers and ranchers.

“I would say it’s a bare minimum tweak,” says Daryl Cates, an Illinois farmer and president of ASA.

Kyle Kunkler, the ASA director of government affairs, says the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision from earlier this summer was critical of the test used to define WOTUS, but the Environmental Protection Agency and Army Corps of Engineers did not address that well in their revision.

“A landowner can’t easily look at their land and make a determination as to whether it will be subject to regulation or not.”

Kunkler says the agencies should have used a comment period in their revision process.

“The agencies are trying to make the claim that because they’re making minor modifications they don’t need to go through a notice and comment period and we, quite frankly, disagree.”

The ASA is challenging the WOTUS rule with several national ag organizations, including the American Farm Bureau Federation, in a U.S. District Court of North Dakota. Kunkler says the coalition of ag groups will work together to respond to the EPA.

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