SCOTUS Significantly Shrinks the Clean Water Act
The ruling vastly narrows the government’s authority over marshes and bogs
On Thursday, the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) significantly shrank the reach of federal clean water protections, dealing a major blow to President Joe Biden’s efforts to restore protections to millions of acres of wetlands and delivering a victory to multiple powerful industries.
The ruling from the court’s conservative majority vastly narrowing the federal government’s authority over marshes and bogs is a win for industries such as homebuilding and oil and gas, which must seek Clean Water Act permits to damage federally protected wetlands. Those industries have fought for decades to limit the law’s reach.
The ruling comes less than a year after the high court issued a contentious ruling restricting EPA’s ability to regulate climate warming gases, and liberal Justice Elena Kagan decried Thursday that the court has appointed “itself as the national decision-maker on environmental policy.”
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