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New Ohio law eases state regulation of some streams

buried streams
Posted at 10:05 PM, Apr 25, 2022

COLUMBUS — Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine has signed a bill into law that restricts the state's ability to regulate streams that flow temporarily after rainfall under water pollution control rules.

Construction companies, the mining industry and other business groups say removing so-called ephemeral streams from regulation would make Ohio's practice consistent with federal law.

The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency created a permitting system for development projects affecting ephemeral streams after Congress removed them from federal oversight in 2020 and left their regulation up to states.

Environmental groups largely oppose the bill that DeWine signed last week, saying the streams play an important role in maintaining water quality.