A district court preliminarily enjoined EPA's and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' controversial "waters of the United States" rule. Thirteen states challenged the rule, generally arguing that the rule was promulgated in violation of the CWA, APA, and NEPA. After determining that original jurisdiction lies in the district court and not the court of appeals, the court found that the states are likely to succeed on their claims that EPA violated its congressional grant of authority in promulgating the rule. The court also found that the states will face irreparable harm absent a preliminary injunction and that a balancing of the harms weighs in the states' favor.
FWS proposed to remove the white-haired goldenrod from the list of endangered and threatened plants based on its determination that threats to this species have been eliminated or reduced to the point that the species no longer meets the definition of an endangered or threatened species under the ESA; the agency seeks comment on a draft post-delisting monitoring plan.
District Courts Divided Over Jurisdiction to Hear WOTUS Rule Challenges
A district court in West Virginia held that it lacked jurisdiction over a coal company's lawsuit challenging EPA's and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' controversial "waters of the United States" rule. Meanwhile, a district court in Nebraska ruled that it had jurisdiction and preliminarily enjoined the rule as it applied to 13 plaintiff states.
The September 2015 issue of ELR's News & Analaysis features articles on habitat conservation plans and climate change, the federal environmental permitting of offshore aquaculture, and navigating CERCLA settlements following Ameripride Services v. Texas Eastern Overseas. The issue also looks at the role for interstate compacts in coastal resilience and climate change mitigation, as well as China’s new public interest environmental protection law. The transcript to a recent ELI seminar on "Working Landscapes: The Future of Land Use Policy?" is included as well.