On February 28, 2017, President Trump signed an executive order directing the roll back of Clean Water Act rules promulgated under the Obama administration. The rules, known as the Waters of the United States rule, defines federal permitting jurisdiction under the CWA. During his 2016 campaign, the president spoke frequently of his intentions to roll back Obama administration rules.

While the executive order makes President Trump’s intentions clear, the Clean Water Rule was adopted as a final rule. Thus, it may take some time for the Corps and EPA to rescind the rule. Pending litigation over the rule also complicates matters. Industry groups and other opponents of the rule initiated legal challenges, which were consolidated in the Sixth Circuit. In a February 2016 ruling, the Sixth Circuit held that it did not have jurisdiction to consider the matter. The National Association of Manufacturers requested Supreme Court review of the decision, which was granted in December.