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Agricultural News

Statement by NCFC President Chuck Conner on EPA’s Announcement on Waters of the United States Rule

Thu, 10 Jun 2021 13:47:19 CDT

Statement by NCFC President Chuck Conner on EPA’s Announcement on Waters of the United States Rule “The National Council of Farmer Cooperatives have significant concerns about the announcement by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers that they plan to repeal and rewrite the definition of ‘waters of the United States’ (WOTUS) as set forth in the 2020 Navigable Waters Protection Rule. The 2020 rule helped to bring certainty to America’s farmers and ranchers over which waters were considered a WOTUS while also protecting the environment and promoting clean water.

“If the EPA and Corps do move forward on this path, they must avoid the dramatic overreach seen in the 2015 WOTUS rule, which expanded federal jurisdiction over lands that Congress never intended to be covered by the Clean Water Act. The 2020 rule reflected the critical fact that it is not necessary to make most waters across every state subject to federal jurisdiction to achieve the environmental objectives of the Clean Water Act (CWA). It also respected the clear need to have waters be meaningfully related to navigable waters for them to be considered subject to federal jurisdiction under the CWA.

“We strongly encourage the agencies to preserve these critical elements of the 2020 rule. This must be a process that is open and transparent. We hope that EPA Administrator Michael Regan will stand by the commitments he made to a House committee in April when, after acknowledging the flaws in the 2015 rule, he pledged that any path forward on WOTUS would be ‘inclusive’ and ‘forward-leaning.’”

About NCFC

Since 1929, NCFC has been the voice of America's farmer cooperatives. Our members are regional and national farmer cooperatives, which are in turn composed of nearly 2,000 local farmer cooperatives across the country. NCFC members also include 26 state and regional councils of cooperatives. Farmer cooperatives allow individual farmers the ability to own and lead organizations that are essential for continued competitiveness in both the domestic and international markets.

America’s farmer-owned cooperatives provide a comprehensive array of services for their members. These diverse organizations handle, process and market virtually every type of agricultural commodity. They also provide farmers with access to infrastructure necessary to manufacture, distribute and sell a variety of farm inputs. Additionally, they provide credit and related financial services, including export financing.


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