BISMARCK, N.D. – North Dakota has partnered with 23 other states in filing a lawsuit in U.S. District Court in North Dakota challenging the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Army Corps of Engineer’s newly revised definition of the Waters of the United States (WOTUS).
In December 2022, the EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers announced the final revised definition of the WOTUS rule. This new rule was published in the federal register in January and is scheduled to go into effect March 20, 2023.
“I fully support Attorney General Drew Wrigley in challenging the EPA’s revised definition of WOTUS,” Agriculture Commissioner Doug Goehring said. “North Dakota and its citizens already properly, sensibly and consistently protect the waters of our state. The revised WOTUS definition is a blatant overreach of authority that significantly and unlawfully expands federal control of state land and water resources.”
“The unnecessary and burdensome definition lacks clarity and would impact farmers, ranchers, small landowners and businesses who would have to assume that all North Dakota agricultural lands are under federal authority. As a result, they would be saddled with the lengthy times and huge expenses of applying for and getting federal permits,” Goehring continued. “As part of the prairie pothole region, North Dakota would be among the most negatively affected by the EPA rule.”