Back in May I wrote about a rule change that the EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers want to implement, that would threaten the property rights of just about every landowner in America. They are planning to amend the definition of “waters of the United States” in the Clean Water Act, ostensibly to protect our waterways from pollution. Previously, that term referred to rivers, lakes, and even some ponds, but now it could include just about anything. It could be a ditch on your property, or even a slight depression on the land that only contains water for certain times of the year. The new rule is so broad that if you have a large puddle on your property, you’ll probably have to consult the EPA before you make any changes to the land.
To give you an idea of what we’re in for, consider the case of Andy Johnson, a Wyoming landowner who decided to build a pond on his property to feed his livestock. Now he’s in big trouble with the EPA, and it could ruin his livelihood. Keep in mind that everything that has happened to him occurred before the EPA decided to broaden their definition of ‘water.’ I can’t imagine how bad things will get with the new rule change.
Fortunately, the EPA’s policy was challenged just hours before it was supposed to take effect on August 28th. Judge Ralph Erickson of the District Court for the District of North Dakota filed an injunction on the behalf 13 states that are currently suing the EPA. The Obama administration and the EPA plan to follow through and enforce the policy on the remaining states that haven’t joined the lawsuit.
Hopefully this tyrannical policy will ultimately be discarded when the states have their day in court. America is supposed to be the land of the free, not the home of the bureaucrats.
Joshua Krause was born and raised in the Bay Area. He is a writer and researcher focused on principles of self-sufficiency and liberty at Ready Nutrition. You can follow Joshua’s work at our Facebook page or on his personal Twitter.
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