New Federal Rule Proposes to Expand Jurisdiction of the Federal Clean Water Act

On March 25, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Army Corps) jointly released a proposed rule to clarify protection under the Clean Water Act for streams and wetlands that form the foundation of the nation’s water resources. Over the next 90 days, the agencies are launching an outreach effort, holding discussions around the country and gathering input. The proposed rule clarifies protection for streams and wetlands. The proposed definitions of waters will apply to all Clean Water Act programs.

As Ohio currently has a robust isolated wetland permitting program (Ohio Revised Code Chapter 6111) already in place, this new ruling will not affect Ohio as much as it will states that do not currently have a strong permitting program. Stream + Wetlands Foundation will continue to monitor the status of this new ruling and will provide updates as necessary.