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National Ass'n of Home Builders v. Environmental Protection Agency

ELR Citation: 41 ELR 20357
Nos. 10-5341, (D.C. Cir., 12/09/2011)

The D.C. Circuit held that a home builders' association lacked standing to challenge EPA's and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' determination that two reaches of the Santa Cruz River in southern Arizona constitute "traditional navigable waters" (TNW) under the CWA. Although the association has spent considerable staff time and monetary resources in their quest to clarify CWA jurisdiction, such as testifying before Congress and participating in numerous court cases, these actions do not suffice to show organizational standing. Neither has the association sufficiently alleged nor persuasively demonstrated any threat of injury in fact to any of its members that is fairly traceable to the TNW determination. Accordingly, the association failed to demonstrate an injury in fact traceable to the TNW determination to establish standing—either in its own right or on behalf of its members. The court, therefore, affirmed a lower court's dismissal of the case, albeit on different jurisdictional grounds.