Landowner's Takings Claim Dismissed on Jurisdictional Grounds
The Federal Circuit upheld a Claims Court decision dismissing on jurisdictional grounds a landowner's Fifth Amendment takings claim against the government in connection with a CWA permit denial. The landowner had previously filed suit with the district court. Because that action and the instant Claims Court action were based on substantially the same operative facts, the Claims Court correctly dismissed the landowner's takings claim as barred by 28 U.S.C. §1500.
Settling CAA Defendant to Pay $2.9 Million Under Proposed DOJ Consent Decree
A settling CAA defendant responsible for emissions violations at gasoline refineries and terminals in several states must pay a $2.9 million civil penalty, must retire 5.5 billion sulfur credits, and must make structural modifications to several of its fuel distribution terminals in environmental justice areas.
OSM's Approval of Two Mine Expansions Violated NEPA
OSM violated NEPA when it approved the expansion of two Colorado mines. The court agreed with environmental groups that OSM violated NEPA by failing to seek public involvement during the review process and by failing to publish notice of the resulting EAs and FONSIs. OSM also failed to take the requisite "hard look" at the environmental impacts of the proposed expansions before issuing the FONSIs and approving the mining plans. But the court stopped short of vacating the approvals.
The May 2015 issue of ELR's News & Analysis features articles on constitutional challenges to state energy policies, recent litigation surrounding the Northern Rocky Mountain population of gray wolves, the use of settlement confidentiality clauses in claims related to hydraulic fracturing, Chinese enviromental law developments for the year 2014, and an analysis of "wind rights" in Texas. The May issue also presents two pieces that examine the relationship between humans and our environment, as well as the transcript to a recent ELI seminar on TSCA reform.