Jump to Navigation
Jump to Content

Environmental Protection Info. Ctr. v. Pacific Lumber Co.

ELR Citation: 31 ELR 20851
Nos. Nos. 99-16042, -16915, 257 F.3d 1071/(9th Cir., 07/24/2001)

The court vacates and remands a district court's order issued after an Endangered Species Act case brought by an environmental group against a lumber company had been declared moot. The district court granted the lumber company's motion to dismiss the case as moot but then issued an opinion outlining the court's reasons for granting a preliminary injunction when the case was still active. The court first holds that the lumber company does not have prudential standing. The district court's order has no collateral estoppel effect, not only because it's immaterial to the judgment, but also because it was entered without jurisdiction. Nevertheless, the court then holds that the lumber company still suffered an injury. Article III prohibits federal courts from taking action on the merits in moot cases. Here, the district court's decision to flout the dictates of Article III and render an opinion in spite of knowing the case was moot rendered the lumber company an aggrieved party. Therefore, the court orders the district court to vacate its post-dismissal order.

The full text of this decision is available from ELR (12 pp., ELR Order No. L-382).

Counsel for Plaintiffs
Brian Gaffney
Law Offices of Brian Gaffney
370 Grand Ave., Oakland CA 94610
(510) 891-9592

Counsel for Defendants
Jared G. Carter
Carter, Behnke, Oglesby & Bacik
169 Mason St., Ste. 300, Ukiah CA 95482
(707) 462-6694