WASHINGTON, DC – This week, National Farmers Union (NFU) submitted comments on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Department of the Army’s (“the agencies”) proposed rule to revise the definition of “waters of the United States” (WOTUS) under the Clean Water Act (CWA).
“Farmers and ranchers understand the importance of clean water on their own farms and ranches and as a shared resource. They know that protecting water quality is a key component of achieving sustainable agricultural production,” wrote Rob Larew, NFU President.
NFU also stressed that ambiguity around the definition of WOTUS has presented “ongoing challenges for farmers and ranchers,” and urged the agencies to develop rules that offer more certainty and clarity to farmers as soon as possible.
While the rules are in development, NFU urged the agencies to “consult farmers and ranchers regularly, extensively, and equitably” and consider the legitimate concerns of family farmers and ranchers and others who will be regulated under updated and new CWA rules.
“We urge the agencies to ensure they are conducting extensive outreach and consulting a diverse array of farmers and ranchers regarding the challenges and conditions they face on their land,” stated Larew. “We believe the agencies must do more to ensure everyone who would like to be heard can have a voice in the development of these regulations.”
NFU comments are available here.
National Farmers Union advocates on behalf of nearly 200,000 American farm families and their communities. We envision a world in which farm families and their communities are respected, valued, and enjoy economic prosperity and social justice.