March 21, 2023

VIDEO: Ricketts Hammers EPA on WOTUS Overreach, Failure to Address 2023 Year-round E15

March 21, 2023

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senator Pete Ricketts (R-NE) hammered Michael Regan, Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), over the new, overreaching Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule and the EPA’s failure to announce year-round E15 for 2023.

“Now I get that I’m from a landlocked state, but to me, navigable waters means you can put a boat on it and go someplace,” said Senator Ricketts. “You cannot do that from a pond on a farm, or a roadside ditch that is temporary, or a puddle on a construction site. It seems you’re trying to extend that very clear definition of navigable to waterways that are clearly not navigable. You talked about exemptions, but you don’t need exemptions when the law is clear, and it’s very clear what Congress’ intent was. This, to me, seems to be an expansion of executive power.”

Ricketts also pushed Regan on why the EPA failed to consider the perspective of farmers and ranchers as a part of the public comments used to develop the WOTUS rule.

In a second round of questioning, Senator Ricketts criticized Regan for failing to announce year-round E15 for 2023.

“Ethanol is something that will help consumers save money at the pump,” said Senator Ricketts. “It helps clean up the environment… and then of course, it’s also great for our farmers and ranchers. So, we asked to be able to sell E15 all year round. The Clean Air Act states that the administrators should publish the regulation resolving this action no later than 90 days after receipt or a notification from a governor. Our renewable fuels industry and producers and refiners didn’t receive anything until March 1, and this should have been done in July. I want to know why it took more than the 90 days to respond.”

Senator Ricketts’ comments came during questioning of Michael Regan, Administrator of the EPA during the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee’s hearing on the EPA’s Proposed Fiscal Year 2024 budget.

Watch the video HERE.


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