Supreme Court Makes Decision in Wetlands Regulation Case

Supreme Court Ruling Drastically Curbs EPA's Power

( – The Biden administration’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) lost a case to the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) after they ruled in favor of an Idaho couple. The couple was prevented from building a home back in 2004 because the government believed that wetlands on their private property were able to be regulated because of a ditch that was close to a “navigable, intrastate lake.” Soon after they began moving dirt, they were contacted by the EPA.

The Idaho couple has been fighting this battle with the EPA for over ten years, this time asking the Supreme Court to “provide a clearer definition for what the law meant,” referring to the Clean Water Act (CWA). The CWA, which was passed by Congress, gave the EPA certain authority to regulate “waters of the United States,” but a unanimous ruling from the Court gives a clear indication that the agency had overstepped its boundaries.

Congress recently passed legislation to override the new WOTUS rule that was finalized by the EPA, and although it passed with support from Democrats and Republicans, President Biden vetoed it anyways. According to Fox News, West Virginia Senator Shelley Moore Capito applauded the Supreme Court decision, stating that it is “a loud and clear warning shot to the Biden administration,” adding that she had been following the case in Idaho since last year. She also criticized the Biden administration for its attempts at overreach, celebrating the ruling as a victory for the freedom of Americans.

The new WOTUS rule from the Biden administration has likely given some Americans, especially farmers, flashbacks to the Obama administration, which created a similar rule. Although the SCOTUS ruling was unanimous, they were not in agreement regarding what constitutes a water source, ruling 5-4 for that part of the case, with Justice Kavanaugh siding with the more liberal justices.

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