Teleconferences the Environmental Protection Agency and Army Corps of Engineers started in September are devoted to concerns that stormwater, wastewater management and drinking water agencies have about what is called the “Waters of the U.S.” (WOTUS) rule established by the Obama Administration. A second teleconference centers on the construction and transportation industries.
The 2015 rule expanded the bodies of water and wetlands which, when crossed or disturbed as a result of construction – such as for gas or water pipelines – are subject to permits that builders have to obtain. The WOTUS review was initiated in February through an executive order signed by President Trump starting a two-prong process to review and revise the Obama-era regulation. The Interstate Natural Gas Association of America was one of the signatories to a 2014 letter prepared by the Water Advocacy Organization, which laid out serious objections to the WOTUS rule as it was being developed by the Obama Administration.