Unpacking the Revised WOTUS Rule

December 2023
ELR 10887
Rebecca L. Kihslinger, Brian Frazer, Royal C. Gardner, Greg DeYoung, and Edward Ornstein

On August 29, 2023, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers issued a direct final rule that revised the “waters of the United States” (WOTUS) definition rule. This rule amended the final WOTUS rule, previously published in January 2023, to be consistent with the Supreme Court’s May decision in Sackett v. Environmental Protection Agency. On September 14, the Environmental Law Institute hosted a panel of experts to analyze the new rule and discuss its regulatory and policy consequences. Below, we present a transcript of that discussion, which has been edited for style, clarity, and space considerations.

Rebecca L. Kihslinger (moderator) is a Senior Science and Policy Analyst and Director of the Wetlands Programs at the Environmental Law Institute. Brian Frazer is Director of the Office of Wetlands, Oceans, and Watersheds at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Royal C. Gardner is Co-Director of the Institute for Biodiversity Law and Policy and Professor of Law at Stetson University College of Law. Greg DeYoung is President and Board Member of the Ecological Restoration Business Association, and Vice President Emeritus for Westervelt Ecological Services. 
Edward Ornstein is Special Counsel on Environmental Affairs for the Miccosukee Tribe of Indians of Florida.

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Unpacking the Revised WOTUS Rule

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