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Weekly Cases Update Volume 48, Issue 7

Sunnyside Gold Corp. v. Environmental Protection Agency

ELR 20040
16-1417 (D.C. Cir., March 2018)

The D.C. Circuit dismissed a mining company's lawsuit challenging EPA's decision to place the entire Bonita Peak Mining District, located in Colorado's Mineral Belt, on the NPL. The mining company owns a mine located in the district, but its mine was not one of the sites scored under the hazard...

Hazard ranking system

California Sea Urchin Comm'n v. Bean

ELR 20037
15-56672, 17-55428 (9th Cir., March 2018)

The Ninth Circuit upheld FWS' decision to end its 1987 sea otter translocation program. FWS created an experimental reserve population of southern sea otters some distance from the main population, but in 2012, FWS deemed the program a failure and terminated it. FWS' interpretation of the...

Marine mammals

In re Border Infrastructure Environmental Litigation

ELR 20034
17cv1215 (S.D. Cal., February 2018)

A district court upheld the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's (DHS') decision to waive the legal requirements of NEPA, ESA, and CZMA for two border wall construction projects in San Diego, California. DHS made its waiver determination under §102 of the Illegal Immigration Reform and...

National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), Coastal Zone Management Act (CZMA), Endangered Species Act (ESA)

Patchak v. Zinke

ELR 20032
16-498 (U.S., February 2018)

The U.S. Supreme Court upheld the 2014 Gun Lake Trust Land Reaffirmation Act, which reaffirmed as trust land certain property on which a Native American tribe wished to build a casino and provided that any future or pending actions relating to that land should be dismissed. Congress enacted the...

Article III, Tribal-owned land

People of California v. BP P.L.C.

ELR 20036
17-06011, -12 (N.D. Cal., February 2018)

A district court held that San Francisco and Oakland, California, may not remove back to state court their climate change public nuisance actions against several oil companies. The defendants—the largest cumulative producers of fossil fuels worldwide—timely invoked federal common law as a...

Climate Change (generally)

National Ass'n of Wheat Growers v. Zeise

ELR 20033
2:17-2401 (E.D. Cal., February 2018)

A district court issued a preliminary injunction enjoining California from enforcing Proposition 65’s carcinogenicity warning requirement for glyphosate. On the evidence before the court, the required warning for glyphosate does not appear to be factually accurate and uncontroversial because it...

Chemicals, Proposition 65

Public Citizen v. Trump

ELR 20031
17-253 (D.D.C., February 2018)

A district court held that public interest and environmental groups lacked standing to challenge the "two-for-one" executive order issued by President Trump on January 30, 2017. The order requires executive branch agencies to identify two existing regulations to be repealed for every new...

Executive Orders, Harm to members

Little Traverse Lake Property Owners Ass'n v. National Park Service

ELR 20030
17-1064 (6th Cir., February 2018)

The Sixth Circuit affirmed a lower court decision dismissing residents' NEPA lawsuit against the National Park Service (NPS) concerning its approval of a scenic trailway through the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore in Michigan. One of the alternative routes for the trailway, which NPS...

Alternatives, §102(2)(E), Public Lands