®: CRE Regulatory Action of the Week
Corps of Engineers and EPA Clarify that Mechanized Excavation Activities are Likely to Result in Discharge of Dredged Material Subject to Regulation
According to the Federal Register notice, the proposed rule by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) would "establish a rebuttable presumption that mechanized landclearing, ditching, channelization, in-stream mining, or other mechanized excavation activity in waters of the United States result in more than incidental fallback, and thus involve a regulable discharge of dredged material".
This proposed rule is in part an effort to clarify the confusion around the country as to what activities are likely to result in regulable discharges of dredged materials. As stated above, the activities that would be subject to the rebuttable presumption-mechanized landclearing, ditching, channelization, in-stream mining, or other mechanized excavation activity-are activities that typically use mechanical equipment that redeposits dredged material in a manner and amount which is different from, or greater than, incidental fallback. The proposal thus makes clear the Corps's and EPA's expectation that, absent a demonstration to the contrary, these activities addressed in the proposed rule typically will result in more than incidental fallback and thus result in regulable redeposits of dredged material.
According to the Federal Register notice, the agencies are doing this, because they are concerned that "without this additional rulemaking, unregulated discharges consisting of more than incidental fallback may continue to occur and result in large-scale destruction of wetlands and degradation of many miles of streams and other waters of the U.S.".
Written comments sent via regular mail regarding this proposed rule must be postmarked by October 16, 2000. Please click on the Federal Register notice link below for addresses and further contact information.
Click to view notice in Federal Register.
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