NCGA calls for EPA to postpone release of final 'Waters of the U.S.' rule

As the Aug. 28 implementation date approaches for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s final “Waters of the U.S." rule, the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) demanded on Thursday that the EPA postpone implementing its controversial rule and said it strongly supports congressional efforts to rescind the rule.

This came after the release of highly critical internal memos from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers related to the rule. The NCGA became concerned because the Corps of Engineers, which had been working with the EPA in crafting the rule, expressed significant reservations concerning the science and legality of the rule.

In a letter requesting an extension of the release of the final rule, NCGA said the agency’s field staff does not even have a clear or consistent understanding of how to implement the rule.

“Our concerns are exacerbated by the fact that the agency's field staff has yet to develop a shared understanding of the rule and how it will be implemented,” the letter said. “Furthermore, the agency's leadership and field staff have yet to develop with farmers a similar understanding of their responsibilities under the Clean Water Act in light of this rule.”