Don Santa, President and Chief Executive Officer of the Interstate Natural Gas Association of America (INGAA), issued the following statement in response to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Notice of Proposed Rulemaking for Clean Water Act Section 401, Water Quality Certification:
"INGAA supports EPA’s proposed rule for the implementation of updated guidance pertaining to Clean Water Act Section 401 and the protection of water quality. When an infrastructure project requires federal authorization, Section 401 of the Clean Water Act provides states and tribes the opportunity to certify or deny that any discharges from the project to regulated waters will comply with applicable federal water quality standards. While the statute recognizes the distinctive roles of the federal and state governments in the environmental review process, the balance between those roles has recently been disrupted and some states have viewed Section 401 as a means of determining which interstate pipeline projects are in the public interest and which are not.
“EPA’s draft rule is necessary to restore efficient and consistent implementation of Section 401 reviews. We welcome today’s action to clarify the discrete roles of federal, state and tribal authorities throughout the Section 401 review process."