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Oklahoma challenges EPA on tribal sovereignty

The state of Oklahoma has filed a lawsuit challenging the Environmental Protection Agency's recognition of tribal sovereignty.

The EPA granted the Pawnee Tribe as treatment-as-state status. The designation recognizes the tribe's right to establish and enforce its own water standards.

Similar designations have been made for tribes throughout the nation. But the state of Oklahoma claims it will lead to a confusing system where up to 38 tribes in the state could set their own, differing standards.

In the past, court challenges to EPA's treatment-as-state program have failed. On one occasion, the EPA was forced to withdraw designations for Wisconsin tribes due to falsification of documents by EPA employees.

Get the Story:
State sues EPA over water rules (The Oklahoman 4/30)

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