View Rule

View EO 12866 Meetings Printer-Friendly Version     Download RIN Data in XML

EPA/OW RIN: 2040-AG13 Publication ID: Fall 2022 
Title: Revised Definition of “Waters of the United States” 

In April 2020, the EPA and the Department of the Army (“the agencies”) published the Navigable Waters Protection Rule that revised the previously-codified definition of “waters of the United States” (WOTUS). The agencies are in the process of revising the definition of WOTUS to include the waters defined by the familiar regulations that were in place prior to the 2015 WOTUS rule, with amendments to reflect the agencies’ determination of the statutory limits on the scope of the “waters of the United States” informed by Supreme Court precedent, the best available science, and the agencies’ experience and technical expertise. The agencies also intend to consider further refinements in a second rule (Rule 2) in light of additional stakeholder engagement and implementation considerations, scientific developments, litigation and environmental justice values. This effort will also be informed by the experience of implementing the pre-2015 rule, the 2015 Clean Water Rule, the 2020 Navigable Waters Protection Rule, and Rule 1.

Agency: Environmental Protection Agency(EPA)  Priority: Other Significant 
RIN Status: Previously published in the Unified Agenda Agenda Stage of Rulemaking: Proposed Rule Stage 
Major: Undetermined  Unfunded Mandates: Undetermined 
CFR Citation: 40 CFR 120.1   
Legal Authority: 33 U.S.C. 1251   
Legal Deadline:  None

Statement of Need: In 2015, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of the Army ("the agencies") published the "Clean Water Rule: Definition of 'Waters of the United States’" (80 FR 37054, June 29, 2015). In April 2020, the agencies published the Navigable Waters Protection Rule (85 FR 22250, April 21, 2020). The agencies conducted a substantive re-evaluation of the definition of "waters of the United States" in accordance with the Executive Order 13990 and determined that they need to revise the definition to ensure the agencies listen to the science, protect the environment, ensure access to clean water, consider how climate change resiliency may be affected by the definition of waters of the United States, and to ensure environmental justice is prioritized in the rulemaking process.

Summary of the Legal Basis: The Clean Water Act (33 U.S.C. 1251 et seq.).

Alternatives: To be determined.

Anticipated Costs and Benefits: To be determined.

Risks: To be determined.

Action Date FR Cite
NPRM  11/00/2023 
Final Rule  07/00/2024 
Additional Information: .
Regulatory Flexibility Analysis Required: Undetermined  Government Levels Affected: Federal, Local, State, Tribal 
Federalism: Undetermined 
Included in the Regulatory Plan: Yes 
Sectors Affected: 11 Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing and Hunting; 111 Crop Production; 111998 All Other Miscellaneous Crop Farming; 112990 All Other Animal Production 
RIN Data Printed in the FR: No 
Related RINs: Related to 2040-AF75  Related Agencies: Joint: DOD/COE; 
Agency Contact:
Whitney Beck
Environmental Protection Agency
Office of Water
Mail Code 4504T, 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue NW,
Washington, DC 20460
Phone:202 566-2553