The Environmental Protection Agency and Army Corps of Engineers published a final rule on May 27, 2015 to redefine the critically important term “Waters of the United States” under the federal Clean Water Act.

  • The rule explains the agencies’ jurisdiction with respect to “tributaries” and “adjacent” waters and comes amidst considerable debate over where to draw the lines of federal permitting authority.
  • The rule affects virtually every type of land development and resource utilization, especially in the West, where the Act’s coverage over ephemeral and intermittent streams is particularly controversial.

The new rule will almost certainly be challenged in the courts and in Congress. In this update, we analyze the details and impact of the new rule.  Read our full Update here.