By Jacob Fischler | Idaho Capital Sun 

The U.S. Supreme Court in a major environmental decision on  Thursday overturned the Environmental Protection Agency’s definition of wetlands that fall under the agency’s jurisdiction, siding with an Idaho couple who’d said they should not be required to obtain federal permits to build on their property that lacked any navigable water.

All nine justices agreed to overturn the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals’ ruling that endorsed the Biden administration’s broad definition of waters of the United States, or WOTUS, the term for what falls under federal enforcement of the Clean Water Act.


The decision is a “powerful affirmation of individual property rights,” Congressman Russ Fulcher, R-Idaho, said in a statement.

“For Idahoans, water is a lifeline and local control has a long, proud tradition,” Fulcher said. “I commend the court’s recognition of the Sacketts’ constitutional rights and the significance of protecting Idaho’s ranchers, farmers, irrigators, and landowners from regulatory overreach.”

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