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Weekly Cases Update Volume 49, Issue 22

Natural Resources Defense Council v. U.S. Department of the Interior

49 ELR 20125
18-CV-4596 (VEC), 18-CV-4601 (VEC), and 18-CV-8084 (S.D.N.Y., July 2019)

A district court granted in part and denied in part DOI's motion to dismiss a challenge to its 2017 interpretation of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act that permitted the "incidental" taking of migratory birds. Environmental groups and states argued the agency's interpretation was arbitrary and...

Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA)

Center for Biological Diversity v. United States Fish and Wildlife Service

49 ELR 20130
CV-17-00475-TUC-JAS (L), CV-17-00576-TUC-JAS (C), and CV-18-00189-TUC-JAS (C) (D. Ariz., July 2019)

A district court vacated the the U.S. Forest Service's approval of an open-pit copper mining operation in the Coronado National Forest that included the dumping of approximately 1.9 billion tons of mine waste across over 2,000 acres of the forest. Environmental groups and tribes argued the...

Mining Law of 1872

Animal Legal Defense Fund v. United States

49 ELR 20129
6:18-cv-01860-MC (D. Or., July 2019)

A district court dismissed a lawsuit brought by nonprofit groups and individuals alleging that climate change and the U.S. government's failure to protect them from the effects of climate change violated their constitutional right to a safe and sustainable environment. Plaintiffs argued the...

Climate Change (generally)

Dine Citizens Against Ruining Our Environment v. Bureau of Indian Affairs

49 ELR 20127
17-17320 (9th Cir., July 2019)

The Ninth Circuit upheld dismissal of a lawsuit challenging a set of agency decisions that reauthorized coal mining activities on lands reserved to the Navajo Nation. In the district court, environmental groups argued that the agencies failed to consider the impact of the mining on the...

Joinder/Necessary parties, FRCP 19

Defenders of Wildlife v. United States Department of the Interior

49 ELR 20124
18-2090 (4th Cir., July 2019)

The Fourth Circuit vacated a biological opinion and incidental take statement issued by FWS in connection with a proposed natural gas pipeline that would run from West Virginia to North Carolina. Environmental groups argued that FWS improperly determined that construction of the pipeline would...

Incidental taking

Trump v. Sierra Club

49 ELR 20131
19A60 (U.S., July 2019)

The U.S. Supreme Court granted the Trump Administration's request to stay a district court order enjoining the use of military funds to build portions of a border wall along the Mexican border. The Court found that the government made a sufficient showing that nonprofit groups who filed suit had...

President

Eastern Oregon Mining Ass'n v. Department of Environmental Quality

49 ELR 20123
46 (Or., July 2019)

The Oregon Supreme Court upheld the Department of Environmental Quality's issuance of a permit for the discharge of certain pollutants resulting from suction dredge mining. A mining association argued that because suction dredge mining did not add anything to navigable waters that was not...

Permit issuance

Information Network for Responsible Mining v. Colorado Mined Land Reclamation Board

49 ELR 20128
18CA1148 (Colo. App., July 2019)

A state appellate court reversed a judgment upholding the Colorado Mined Land Reclamation Board's order granting a uranium mining company's request for approval of a second period of temporary cessation. Environmental groups argued the lower court erred in affirming the Board's order because the...

Mining

Rhode Island v. Chevron Corp.

49 ELR 20126
18-395 WES (D.R.I., July 2019)

A district court granted Rhode Island's motion to remand to state court a challenge against energy companies for contributing to climate change. The state argued its challenge should be removed back to state, where it was initially brought, to seek relief for the damage the companies had and...

Climate Change (generally)