Thursday, March 27, 2014

EPA Moves for Massive Increase on Their Authority over Land and Water

As I have noted in previous posts ( use page search bar for "Agenda 21") Western Socialism is not in a big hurry to engage in outright seizures of private property. These things are messy, and Leftists learned that collective lands are terribly unproductive compared to private property, which is worked and cared for by individuals who have a real interest or stake on the land.

The key element of the plan for Western Socialists is to allow private property but to have massive control over it, with the most power exercised by regulatory bodies that are not bound by the same rules as are the police. Restrictions will (and are) be put in place that make it very difficult for any but the most wealthy (or corporations) to own property. Standards for single-family housing lots, for example, will ensure that only the wealthy can afford either the minimum lot size or the Carbon Credits to live anywhere other than apartment buildings.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has authority over actual bodies of water, however small they may be. Many US lakes and rivers were horrorshows of pollution for decades, with some only having been in a state of recovery for twenty years. To claim authority over a body of water, the EPA had the burden of proof; they needed to demonstrate that the lake, pond or river/stream had water least somewhat year-round.

For them, that was too much of a burden and gave them far to little control. What they now want to is to have control over any water, even if a small depression fills up with water for a few days during the drenching rains of spring, or the rivulets that form from the same heavy downpours. If they are successful  front and backyards in well over half of the US will be fair game for them. Homeowners, farmers, and small businesses will be subjected to the diktat of the bureaucrat. The latter will be able to stroll in, take a look, and tell the owner that he has to remove a shed near the small but dry gully, and the hole in the backyard that was created by the uprooted tree will result in an order to cease and desist from using fertilizer on the lawn or pesticides around the foundation of the house:

"In what critics are describing as a government land grab, the Environmental Protection Agency proposed a change Tuesday to the Clean Water Act that would give it regulatory authority over temporary wetlands and waterways.
The proposal immediately sparked concerns that the regulatory power could extend into seasonal ponds, streams and ditches, including those on private property.

"The ... rule may be one of the most significant private property grabs in U.S. history," said Louisiana Sen. David Vitter, the top Republican on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee.

The EPA proposal would apply pollution regulations to the country's so-called "intermittent and ephemeral streams and wetlands" -- which are created during wet seasons, or simply after it rains, but are temporary.

At issue is whether the smaller streams and wetlands are indeed part of the "waters of the United States."

The Supreme Court ruled on the issue in 2001 and 2006. The second ruling restricted the federal government's authority by stating such waters must be "relatively" permanent or continuously flowing and sizeable, like "oceans, rivers, streams and lakes."..................

They also argued such waters "form the foundation of the nation's water resources" and the changes would not extend the federal government's reach. "To be clear, our proposal does not add to or expand the scope of the waters historically protected under the Clean Water Act," EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said in a video accompanying the announcement........

However, Vitter accused the EPA of "picking and choosing" its science while trying to "take another step toward outright permitting authority over virtually any wet area in the country."

He also warned the proposed change, if approved, would open the door for more environmental groups suing private property owners.

Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, echoed those concerns, saying the change "could result in serious collateral damage to our economy."

"[I]t appears that the EPA is seeking to dramatically expand its jurisdictional reach under the Clean Water Act," she said in a statement. The senator added that the change could have a huge impact on Alaska.

"If EPA is not careful, this rule could effectively give the federal government control of nearly all of our state -- and prove to be a showstopper for both traditional access and new development," she said."

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