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Glover River Org. v. Department of the Interior

Citation: 12 ELR 20730
No. No. 81-1194, 675 F.2d 251/17 ERC 1573/(10th Cir., 04/12/1982)

The Tenth Circuit rules that appellee lack's standing to challenge the Department of the Interior's listing of the leopard darter as a threatened species under the Endangered Species Act. Appelleeis a nonprofit organization dedicated to the promotion of flood control projects on the Little River system. It contended that the listing should have been preceded by preparation of an environmental impact statement under the National Environmental Policy Act examining the listing's impact on future federal funding for flood control projects. The court rules that appellee has met the first prong of the standing requirement by demonstrating a concrete injury to itself or its members. The complaint alleged that the organization's members suffered property damage during floods in 1971 and 1972 and face a threat of future flood damage in the absence of the construction of dams or other flood control projects. However, the court rules that there is no evidence that appellee's injury would be redressed by the relief requested since appellee has failed to prove that flood control projects would be built but for the listing. In addition, the court holds that appellee has failed to establish a causal connection between appellants' actions and its alleged injury. The 1978 listing was not related to a failure to build dams to prevent the 1971 and 1972 floods and any existence of a causal link between the listing and the asserted loss of federal funding is too speculative to support standing.

[The briefs in this case are summarized at ELR PEND. LIT. 65722 — Ed.]

Counsel for Appellants
Carol E. Dinkins, Ass't Attorney General; Jacques B. Gelin, Nancy B. Firestone
Land and Natural Resources Division
Department of Justice, Washington DC 20530
(202) 633-2757

James E. Edmondson, U.S. Attorney; Betty Outhier Williams
P.O. Box 1009, 333 Fed. Bldg., Muskogee OK 74401
(918) 687-2543

Counsel for Appellee
Gene Stipe, Craig Dawkins
Stipe, Gossett, Stipe, Harper & Estes
P.O. Box 53567, Oklahoma City OK 73152
(405) 524-2268

McKay , J. (joined by Doyle and Logan, JJ.)