Trump expected to reverse water regs with executive order

Executive order pending on WOTUS rule.

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WASHINGTON, DC, FEBRUARY 27, 2017 -- President Donald Trump is expected to sign an executive order rolling back parts of the Obama administration's Clean Water Rule, according several news outlets. The Wall Street Journal and Reuters said the order could come as early as Monday.

Trump is expected to ask the EPA to withdraw the Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule, which expands the number of waterways that are federally protected under the Clean Water Act, a senior official in the administration told Reuters.

The rule, finalized by the EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in May 2015, was blocked by a federal appeals court pending further court challenges. Under the previous administration, the EPA said the rule protects waters that are next to rivers and lakes and their tributaries "because science shows that they impact downstream waters."

The order is one of several environmental orders to be signed in the coming weeks, including a reversal of the Obama administration's clean power plant rule and instructing the Interior Department's Bureau of Land Management to lift a ban on new coal mining leases on federal lands.

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