Washington—Today, the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Corps of Engineers proposed a new rule which would help clarify what waters are regulated under the Clean Water Act. Heritage senior research fellow, Daren Bakst released the following response:
“The EPA and Corps should be commended for proposing a rule that respects the rule of law and recognizes the important role states play in protecting our nation’s waters. While the federal role in protecting water is important, the Clean Water Act was never envisioned as a tool for the federal government to effectively regulate almost every water. In fact, the Clean Water Act itself makes it expressly clear that states are supposed to play a leading role in water regulation, not the federal government.
“Congress recognized that cooperative federalism was the best approach to protect the environment. Our nation’s waters will be protected best when those closest to the environmental challenges identify the solutions, not when federal bureaucrats impose a one-size-fits all solution.
“There is of course still a lot to review regarding this proposed rule, and changes may be needed. However, the proposed rule is a good start. Today is a great day for the environment, the rule of law, and property owners across the country.”