July 31, 2017

Regulatory Rollback Continues: EPA, Interior Announce Plans To Get Rid Of 2015 Energy, Environmental Rules

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Army Corps of Engineers last Thursday took the first official step in the Trump administration’s rewrite of the Waters of the United States (WOTUS) regulation, publishing a notice in the Federal Register that starts the process of reversing the Obama administration’s 2015 rule. (Federal courts had kept that regulation from ever being implemented.)

EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt said, “We are taking significant action to return power to the states and provide regulatory certainty to our nation's farmers and businesses.” As a reminder, the Metals Service Center Institute opposed the 2015 version of the WOTUS rule since it was overly broad and would have given the EPA oversight over even the smallest bodies of water.

The public has 30 days to comment on the EPA’s latest action. As The Hill explained, “After the EPA gathers and analyzes the comments, it can make any necessary changes and then make the rollback final.”

Click here to learn how to comment.

In related news: also last week, the U.S. Interior Department also made clear that it intends to roll back regulations imposed in 2015 on natural gas exploration on federal land. Click here to read more. MSCI supports opening more federal lands to oil and gas exploration.