NFU Urges EPA to Clarify Rules, Discourages Overly Burdensome Regulations

2 08 2011

WASHINGTON (Aug. 2, 2011) – National Farmers Union (NFU) submitted comments to the Water Docket of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) asking for clarification on how the agency will identify waters protected by the Federal Water Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972 (CWA) under a new proposed guidance rule.

“We are concerned that as currently written, the application of the ‘significant nexus’ test for determining jurisdictional waters presents an unclear and potentially inconsistent standard for field assessments,” said NFU President Roger Johnson. “By making determinations with broad tests and assumptions such as considering waters of the same resource type or ‘similarly situated waters,’ the agencies could neglect significant local considerations that might influence determinations.”

NFU urged the EPA to defer to state laws to regulate bodies of water that are fully contained within a state and are not suitable for transportation.

“NFU policy opposes broadening the definition of what waters are considered jurisdictional,” said Johnson. “We oppose any efforts by the federal government through the usage of national water policy to usurp the rights and prerogatives of the individual states, and therefore we oppose provisions in the proposed guidance that would seek to assert jurisdiction over waters that are neither navigable nor interstate in nature.”

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