The freshwater Madrona Marsh wetlands in Torrance, California. Photo: Citizen of the Planet/Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

The Environmental Protection Agency published plans to remove Clean Water Act protections for some wetlands, streams and marshes in the Federal Register on Tuesday, meaning that the changes go into effect in 60 days.

What's next: Lawsuits are expected against the rescinded protections once they go into effect in June, E&E News reports.

Our thought bubble, via Axios' Amy Harder: This regulation has been a lightning rod with rural Americans and a legal mess for years, beginning during the Obama administration, which tried to overhaul an even earlier bureaucratic morass.

  • Tuesday's final rule will only continue this messy situation, leaving states to move forward with patchwork solutions.

The big picture: The Trump administration has rolled back at least 58 environmental regulations, the New York Times reports, with more than 30 others in progress. But changes to the Clear Water Act mark one of Trump's biggest environmental cuts yet.

Go deeper: White House meetings provide last round of wrangling ahead of Trump's water rule

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Politics: Americans feel Trump's sickness makes him harder to trustFlorida breaks record for in-person early voting.
  2. Health: The next wave is gaining steam.
  3. Education: Schools haven't become hotspots.
  4. World: Ireland moving back into lockdown — Argentina becomes 5th country to report 1 million infections.

Meadows confirms Trump's tweets "declassifying" Russia documents were false

Photo: Tom Williams-Pool/Getty Images

White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows confirmed in court on Tuesday that President Trump's tweets authorizing the disclosure of documents related to the Russia investigation and Hillary Clinton's emails "were not self-executing declassification orders," after a federal judge demanded that Trump be asked about his intentions.

Why it matters: BuzzFeed News reporter Jason Leopold cited the tweets in an emergency motion seeking to gain access to special counsel Robert Mueller's unredacted report as part of a Freedom of Information Act request. This is the first time Trump himself has indicated, according to Meadows, that his tweets are not official directives.

3 hours ago - World

China embraces hostage diplomacy

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The Chinese government is threatening to detain foreign citizens unless their home governments do what Beijing demands. In some cases, China has already made good on those threats.

The big picture: This marks a potential evolution of China's "wolf warrior diplomacy" to outright rogue state behavior, putting it in the company of countries like North Korea and Iran, which have also engaged in hostage diplomacy.