Media Statement: Waters of the U.S.

March 1, 2017

Atlanta, Ga. (March 1, 2017)The below statement can be attributed in its entirety to Chad Gregory, president, United Egg Producers:

“Providing excellent care of their hens, producing safe eggs and preserving the environment are absolute priorities for America’s commercial egg farmers. Egg farmers recognize their responsibility to protect the waterways on and around their farms and are committed to proper manure management at all times.

“The final “Waters of the US” (WOTUS) Rule issued by US EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers in 2015 was not the right approach to assuring water quality. United Egg Producers (UEP) welcomed the Executive Order from President Trump directing EPA and the Corps to prepare a new rulemaking that uses a defensible and sensible meaning for the term “navigable waters” when determining Clean Water Act jurisdiction. Our members fully support the Administration’s plan to withdraw the 2015 rule and replace it with new measures that provide clarity for landowners, set reasonable timelines and regulatory guidelines, integrate the roles of state and local governments, and include provisions that consider both scientific and economic factors.

“Many groups – even those beyond the agriculture community – recognized the flaws inherent in the WOTUS proposal. Industry and environmental groups, as well as more than 30 states, challenged the Rule, which disregarded many procedural safeguards, usurped state and local regulatory authority, and imposed heavy federal permitting and regulatory burdens on landowners, small businesses and the regulated community.

“UEP and its members look forward to the opportunity to work with the Administration to develop a new rule that provides clarity for landowners and that stays within the bounds of Congressional intent and Supreme Court precedent. As a new rule is developed, egg farmers will continue their work on the farm to preserve the water, air and land; to manage manure responsibly; and to demonstrate their dedication to serve as good stewards of the environment.”