The Ninth Circuit dismissed an oil company's Declaratory Judgment Act lawsuit against several environmental groups, seeking a declaration that the Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement’s approval of two oil spill response plans under OPA for Alaska’s Beaufort and Chukchi Seas did not violate the APA. The oil company does not have legal interests under the APA that are adverse to either the Bureau or the environmental groups. The court, therefore, dismissed the case for lack of jurisdiction.
EPA Denies Petition to Object to CAA Title V Permit
EPA announced its decision to deny a petition objecting to a CAA Title V operating permit issued to the Gateway Generating Station, LLC facility in Antioch, California, for failing to obtain ESA incidental take authorization for listed species affected by the facility, and gave petitioner 60 days to seek judicial review.
Government May Not Regulate Interstate Species on Private Lands
A district court held that the federal government may not regulate the take of the Utah prairie dog, a threatened species, on non-federal lands under the ESA. The Utah prairie dog is located exclusively within the state of Utah, and the Commerce Clause does not authorize Congress to regulate takes of a purely intrastate species that has no substantial effect on interstate commerce. FWS' arguments purporting to establish such a link in this case were simply too attenuated.
The November issue of ELR's News & Analysis features articles on the National Marine Sanctuary System, EPA's fine particulate air pollution control program, and land use planning. Also included is an article focusing on the "pollutant" element of Clean Water Act offenses, as well as a piece on "big data" and the environment. The November issue also looks back at the lives of two pioneers in environmental law, David Sive (1922-2014) and Joseph Sax (1936-2014).