Jenkins Comments on WOTUS Rule Rollback

President Trump’s executive order to start rolling back an Obama administration rule on waters in the United States is backed by a host of affected industry groups – including some like golf courses that are connected to his business interests. A rule meant to limit water pollution from coal mining has already been killed by Congress, which is now weighing whether to jettison rules that force gas drilling operations on federal land to capture more of the toxic methane they emit. Trump’s executive order seeks to undermine such efforts. In any case, Jenkins is pleased the policy is reversed. “No agency has power that Congress has not given them – that’s called rule of law”.

Mr. Trumps decision Tuesday technically doesnt take the regulation off the books for good, but it does give clear guidance to federal agencies that they must “review and reconsider” the rule immediately, potentially ending the ongoing legal battle. Cory Gardner released a statement applauding the order, calling the rule “a glaring example of the federal government’s overreach”.

Trump said a Wyoming rancher was fined $37,000 a day for digging a watering hole for his cattle, and he directed the EPA to take action to change the rule.

The EPA always believed its jurisdiction stretched beyond traditional navigable waters, such as rivers and seas, to the smaller bodies of water and wetlands that can affect them, but it didn’t have a strong legal basis to prove it.

Later Tuesday, Trump was expected to sign another executive order created to assist historically black colleges and universities.

The American Farm Bureau Federation also launched a campaign called “Ditch the Rule”.

Under Trump’s direction, a federal government program established to strengthen and promote HBCUs will move from the Department of Education to the White House. United States ruling states that covered bodies of water must, in the words of Justice Anthony Kennedy, have a “significant nexus” with the nation’s navigable waters.

“President Trump’s order turns the mission of the Environmental Protection Agency on its head: Instead of protecting the drinking water sources for 1 in 3 Americans, he is telling the EPA to stop protecting these waters from polluters”.

Environmental organizations said Trump’s actions would put safe drinking water at risk and protect polluters.

Revisions also are supported by the Montana Stockgrowers Association, Montana Grain Growers Association, Montana Wool Growers Association and Montana Chamber of Commerce. Our concern with the rule has always about the nonspecific and overly broad nature of the rule as written, and never about the paramount goal of cleaner water and more environmentally sound farming practices.

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