In this Oct. 9, 2018 photo, police office guards the main entrance to the Supreme Court in Washington. The Supreme Court has agreed to consider a case about the reach of a federal clean water law. The justices agreed Tuesday to hear a case involving the Clean Water Act. The act requires polluters to get a permit when they release pollution from a source such as a pipe or well to certain bodies of water such as rivers and lakes that are called "navigable waters." The case involves treated wastewater from the Lahaina Wastewater Reclamation Facility in Hawaii.(AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
camera (The Associated Press) In this Oct. 9, 2018 photo, police office guards the main entrance to the Supreme Court in Washington. The Supreme Court has agreed to consider a case about the reach of a federal clean water law. The justices agreed Tuesday to hear a case involving the Clean Water Act. The act requires polluters to get a permit when they release pollution from a source such as a pipe or well to certain bodies of water such as rivers and lakes that are called "navigable waters." The case involves treated wastewater from the Lahaina Wastewater Reclamation Facility in Hawaii.(AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

The Supreme Court agreed Tuesday to consider a case about the reach of landmark federal clean-water protections, as the Trump administration spars with conservation groups on the same crucial environmental question.

The justices agreed Tuesday to hear a case involving the Clean Water Act. The act requires polluters to get a permit when they release pollution from a source such as a pipe or well to certain bodies of water such as rivers and lakes that are called "navigable waters."

The issue the Supreme Court agreed to decide involves whether permits are required under the law when the pollutant is released into soil or groundwater but later reaches navigable waters.

The case involves treated wastewater from the Lahaina Wastewater Reclamation Facility in Hawaii.

More than a dozen states and the Trump administration asked the Supreme Court to hear the case.

The court's decision to hear the case comes as the Trump administration separately is proposing to rewrite the federal interpretation of what wetlands and waterways fall under the protections of the Clean Water Act. The proposal would be one of the administration's biggest environmental rollbacks.