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Weekly Cases Update Volume 51, Issue 25

Cloud Peak Energy Inc. v. United States Department of the Interior

51 ELR 20172
19-CV-120-SWS, 19-CV-121-SWS, and 19-CV-126-SWS (D. Wyo., September 2021)

A district court upheld in part and vacated in part a 2016 rule of the Office of Natural Resources Revenue (ONNR), which effectively changed how royalties owed to the federal government are calculated on oil, gas, and coal produced from federal land and offshore leases as well as coal produced...

Natural Resources (generally)

Hoboken, City of v. Exxon Mobil Corp.

51 ELR 20173
20-cv-14243 (D.N.J., September 2021)

A district court remanded to state court a climate liability lawsuit brought by the city of Hoboken, New Jersey, against large oil and gas companies. The city filed suit in state court, alleging the companies' decades-long campaign to downplay the effect of fossil fuel usage on climate change...

Climate Change (generally)

Northwest Environmental Defense Center v. United States Army Corps of Engineers

51 ELR 20171
3:18-cv-00437-HZ (D. Or., September 2021)

A district court granted interim injunctive relief for environmental groups in a lawsuit concerning the Army Corps of Engineers' operation of dams in the Willamette River Basin. The groups sought injunctive relief to remedy the Corps' substantive and procedural ESA violations previously found by...

Jeopardize species/habitat

Labor Council for Latin American Advancement v. United States Environmental Protection Agency

51 ELR 20170
19-1042(L), 19-1044, and 19-2329 (2d Cir., September 2021)

The Second Circuit denied two petitions to review EPA's final rule restricting access by customers to methylene chloride. A solvent company challenged the rule, arguing that the method of restricting customer use was arbitrary and capricious because of its incidental impact on commercial uses,...

Promulgation of rules, §6(c)

Missouri v. Biden

51 ELR 20169
4:21-cv-00287-AGF (E.D. Mo., August 2021)

A district court dismissed a challenge to the president's Executive Order No. 13990, which established an interagency working group on the social cost of greenhouse gases (GHGs) and directed the group to publish interim estimates for the social costs of GHG emissions. Thirteen states challenged...

Climate Change (generally)

In re Enbridge Line 3 Replacement Project in Minnesota Kittson, Marshall, Pennington, Polk, Red Lake, Clearwater, Hubbard, Wadena, Cass, Crow Wing, Aitkin, St. Louis, and Carlton Counties Section 401 Water Quality Certification

51 ELR 20168
A20-1513 (Minn. Ct. App., August 2021)

A Minnesota appellate court affirmed the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency's (MPCA's) decision to issue a CWA §401 certification for the Line 3 crude oil pipeline replacement project. Native American tribes and environmental groups challenged the decision, arguing the MPCA failed to consider...

State certification, §401

Pasqua Yaqui Tribe v. United States Environmental Protection Agency

51 ELR 20167
CV-20-00266-TUC-RM (D. Ariz., August 2021)

A district court vacated and remanded EPA's and the Army Corps of Engineers' Navigable Waters Protection Rule, which established a new definition of "waters of the United States" under the CWA. EPA and the Corps sought voluntary remand of the rule without vacatur to give them time to revise or...

Navigable Waters

Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Ass'n v. Environmental Protection Agency

51 ELR 20166
15-1056 (D.C. Cir., August 2021)

The D.C. Circuit denied a challenge to EPA's 2015 rule updating the standards under which the Agency audits wood-burning heaters' compliance with CAA emissions limits. An industry group argued the rule was invalid because, unlike the 1988 rule, it authorized testing at other labs and neither...

Standards of performance, §111(a)

Ass'n of Irritated Residents v. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

51 ELR 20165
19-71223 (9th Cir., August 2021)

The Ninth Circuit granted in part and denied in part a petition to review EPA's final rule approving California's SIP for meeting the air quality standard for ozone in the San Joaquin Valley. An environmental group argued the SIP's contingency measure was inadequate because it provided only a...

Approval and revision, §110(a)

Missouri v. United States Department of the Interior

51 ELR 20164
2:20-cv-4018-NKL (W.D. Mo., August 2021)

A district court denied summary judgment for the state of Missouri in a challenge to the Bureau of Reclamation's approval of a water supply project in North Dakota. Missouri argued the Bureau violated NEPA by failing to prepare an EIS, failing to take a "hard look" at the effectiveness of...

Held not required for