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Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Ry. v. Callaway

Citation: 5 ELR 20086
No. Nos. 74-1190, -1191, 382 F. Supp. 610/7 ERC 1016/(D.D.C., 09/06/1974)

The court preliminarily enjoins reconstruction of an existing lock and dam on the upper Mississippi River until the project receives congressional authorization and the Corps of Engineers prepares an adequate NEPA impact statement. The proposed reconstruction requires congressional consent under 33 U.S.C. §§ 5 and 401, and such authorization has not been given even though Congress has appropriated funds for the project. The final EIS for the project is inadequate in that it is insufficiently detailed, fails to disclose essential data, does not consider all reasonable alternatives, and illegally segments the project. Plaintiffs, who include a railroad and environmentalists, seem likely to prevail on their contention that the lock and dam reconstruction project is the first step in the expansion of the entire Upper Mississippi navigation system, and the EIS therefore must contain an analysis of the systemic environmental implications for that entire area as well. Noting that NEPA has clearly been violated and that the traditional considerations governing equitable relief lie in plaintiffs' favor in this case, the court concludes that the project cannot be allowed to proceed and issues a preliminary injunction.

Counsel for Plaintiffs
Joseph V. Karaganis
Sanford R. Gail
Jon T. Brown
Martin, Karaganis & Gail
33 N. La Salle Street
Chicago, Ill. 60602

Joseph D. Feeney, Jr. General Counsel
Western Railroad Assn.
222 S. Riverside Plaza
Chicago, Ill. 60606

Counsel for Defendants
Irwin Schroeder, Jr.
Department of Justice
Washington, D.C. 20530

E. Manning Seltzer General Counsel
Fred R. Disheroon Asst. General Counsel
Army Corps of Engineers
Forrestal Building
Washington, D.C. 20314