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Weekly Cases Update Volume 46, Issue 7

Idaho Wool Growers v. Vilsack

ELR 20047
14-35445 (9th Cir., March 2016)

The Ninth Circuit upheld the U.S. Forest Service's decision to close to domestic sheep grazing approximately 70% of allotments on which grazing had been permitted in the Payette National Forest in Idaho. The Forest Service's decision was made in response to concerns about disease transmission to...

National forests, Payette National Forest, Idaho

Defenders of Wildlife v. Jewell

ELR 20046
14-5284 (D.C. Cir., March 2016)

The D.C. Circuit upheld FWS' decision to withdraw its proposal to list as endangered the dunes sagebrush lizard in New Mexico and Texas. After FWS proposed to list the lizard, it received updated information about conservation efforts in the two states. Based on this information, which included...

Listing policy, Wildlife (generally)

BSK Enterprises, Inc. v. Beroth Oil Co.

ELR 20048
COA15-189 (N.C. App. Ct., March 2016)

A North Carolina appellate court upheld a trial court's decision to cap a property owner's award of remediation damages to the diminution in property value, not the amount it would cost to clean up the property, thereby reducing a jury's award from $1.5 million to $108,500. The case involves a...

Property, Groundwater, Underground Storage Tanks (USTs)

Alaska Oil & Gas Ass'n v. Jewell

ELR 20042
13-35619 et al. (9th Cir., February 2016)

The Ninth Circuit reversed a lower court decision vacating FWS' designation of critical habitat in Alaska for the polar bear, a threatened species, and reinstated the designation. The designation encompasses sea ice, terrestrial...

Critical habitat designation, Polar bear

Permian Basin Petroleum Ass'n v. Department of the Interior

ELR 20045
7:14-CV-50 (W.D. Tex., February 2016)

A district court denied a motion to amend its prior ruling vacating FWS' listing of the lesser prairie chicken as a threatened species under the ESA. FWS argued that the court should have remanded, rather than...

Listing policy, Wildlife (generally)

Prairie Rivers Network v. Illinois Pollution Control Board

ELR 20044
1-15-0971 (Ill. App., February 2016)

An Illinois appellate court held that the Illinois Pollution Control Board erred when it upheld the state environmental agency's decision to reissue NPDES permits for three large water reclamation plants in the Chicago area. Petitioners argued that the permits fail to include conditions ensuring...

Water quality, State programs, §402(b)

Friends of Tahoe Forest Access v. United States Department of Agriculture

ELR 20043
14-15336 (9th Cir., February 2016)

The Ninth Circuit, in an unpublished opinion, upheld the U.S. Forest Service's decision to allow motorized vehicles on just 62 of 869 miles of user-created roads and trails in the Tahoe National Forest. To implement the 2005 Travel Management Rule in the Tahoe National Forest, the Forest Service...

National forests, National forests