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Natural Resources Defense Council v. Burford

Citation: 19 ELR 20740
No. No. 82-2763, 716 F. Supp. 632/(D.D.C., 11/17/1988)

The court holds that environmental groups and organizations composed of residents of western states lack standing to challenge regulations issued by the Department of the Interior governing leasing and mining of federally owned coal. The court initially observes that plaintiffs must make a greater showing to support standing at the summary judgment stage than on a motion to dismiss. The bare allegations in the complaint and one paragraph in a subsequent pleading, unsupported by affidavits or other documentary evidence, are not sufficient at the summary judgment stage. Plaintiffs have failed to show that the challenged regulatory program has injured or threatens to injure them. Plaintiffs have also not shown that the alleged injuries, including air and water pollution from surface mining, are fairly traceable to the regulations.

Counsel for Plaintiffs
Eldon V.C. Greenberg
Galloway & Greenberg
1835 K St. NW, Ste. 801, Washington DC 20006
(202) 833-9084

Counsel for Defendants
Alfred T. Ghiorzi
Land and Natural Resources Division
U.S. Department of Justice, Washington DC 20530
(202) 633-2306