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Weekly Cases Update Volume 44, Issue 2

Florida Wildlife Federation v. McCarthy

ELR 20006
4:08cv324 (N.D. Fla., January 2014)

A district court granted EPA's motion to amend a consent decree requiring it to adopt numeric criteria for Florida's waters unless the state does so first. Florida adopted new nutrient criteria, but for some waters, the criteria are not numeric. EPA then sought to modify the consent decree so...

Water pollution, State standards, §303(a)

Fox v. Elk Run Coal Co.

ELR 20007
12-2387, -2402 (4th Cir., January 2014)

The Fourth Circuit affirmed a lower court decision dismissing a widow's claim that a coal company committed fraud on the court and thereby deprived her husband, a coal miner, of nearly a decade of benefits under the Black Lung Benefits Act (BLBA). Because the coal company had admitted liability...

Fraud, Toxic Substances (generally)

Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection v. Beazer East, Inc.

ELR 20010
13-1209 (3d Cir., January 2014)

The Third Circuit, in an unpublished opinion, affirmed a lower court decision dismissing as time barred a state environmental agency's CERCLA lawsuit seeking reimbursement of response costs incurred at a former landfill. The defendants argued that the agency's action at the site was a "removal"...

Held included, Held not included, Statute of limitations purposes, Statute of limitations purposes

In re Methyl Tertiary Butyl Ether

ELR 20009
1:00-1898 (S.D.N.Y., December 2013)

A district court dismissed as time-barred Puerto Rico's lawsuit against two gasoline suppliers for groundwater contamination. The commonwealth had sufficient knowledge of both the alleged injury and the identity of the alleged tortfeasors in 2007 when it filed its initial complaint against...

Methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE), Water pollution

Broussard v. Dow Chemical Co.

ELR 20008
13-30544 (5th Cir., December 2013)

The Fifth Circuit upheld the dismissal of a landowner's suit against a chemical company for damages stemming from natural gas well operations. The company operated the well in the late 1960s and early 1970s under a mineral lease that expired in 1975. The lease granted the landowners the right to...

Property rights, Property rights

United States v. Tuma

ELR 20011
12-31234 (5th Cir., December 2013)

The Fifth Circuit upheld the conviction and sentencing of the former owner of a wastewater treatment facility who allowed the disposal of untreated wastewater into U.S. waters without a permit. The former owner argued that the lower court erred in excluding evidence about the lack of...

Criminal penalty provision, §309(c), Evidence