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Astoria, Port of v. Hodel

Citation: 5 ELR 20657
No. No. 75-349, 8 ERC 1156/(D. Or., 08/27/1975)

An electric power sale contract between the Bonneville Power Administration (BPA) and the corporate owner of a proposed aluminum reduction plant is declared unenforceable until an adequate NEPA impact statement is prepared. A municipality which lost its bid to have the plant locate within its boundaries lacks standing to sue under NEPA because its interest in this litigation is solely pecuniary and thus not within the zone of interests protected by the statute. A citizens' association and several individual plaintiffs do have standing, however, since they have alleged that they will suffer environmental injuries should the plant be constructed. The power sale agreement effectively permits the plant to operate, and such direct power sales between BPA and primary industrial users therefore constitute major federal actions which federalize essentially private projects for NEPA purposes. The aluminum plant will have obvious and significant environmental effects in the form of solid waste disposal problems, water consumption requirements, and aesthetic impacts, which must be examined in a NEPA statement. Because defendants acted in good faith in not preparing an EIS before executing the power sale agreement, the court declines to grant the extraordingly remedy of voiding the contract, but retains jurisdiction over the case in anticipation of further controversy concerning the adequacy of the completed impact statement.

Counsel for Plaintiffs
Donald H. Pearlman
Diarmuid F. O'Scannlain
Michael J. Esler
Keane, Haessler, Harper, Pearlman & Copeland
3500 First National Tower
Portland, Ore. 97201

Counsel for Federal Defendant
Sidney I. Lezak U.S. Attorney
Jack G. Collins
Thomas C. Lee Asst. U.S. Attorneys
506 U.S. Courthouse
Portland, Ore. 97207

Counsel for Defendant Alumax Pacific Corp.
James P. Rogers
Barnes H. Ellis
Frank Josselson
Thomas G. P. Guilbert
Davies, Biggs, Strayer, Stoel & Boley
900 S.W. Fifth Ave.
Portland, Ore. 97204