On Monday, a federal judge threw out a major Trump Administration rule that scaled back the federal definition of the Waters of the United States (WOTUS).  The ruling in the U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona, which applies nationwide, will afford new protections for drinking-water supplies for millions of Americans, as well as for thousands of wildlife species that depend on America’s wetland acreage.  The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers had successfully pressed courts in other parts of the country to allow the Biden Administration to come up with a new definition of WOTUS without immediately scrapping the Trump Administration’s rule.  Nevertheless, this ruling found that the Trump Administration’s rule, which gutted the Obama Administration’s 2015 Clean Water Rule, was too flawed to keep in place.
While celebrated by environmental groups, this ruling casts uncertainty over farmers and ranchers across the country on the status of federal wetlands jurisdiction as well as puts possibly hundreds of projects currently underway across the country in a legal limbo.