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Friends of the Santa Clara River v. United States Army Corps of Engineers

ELR Citation: 48 ELR 20054
Nos. 15-56337, (9th Cir., 04/09/2018)

The Ninth Circuit upheld the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers' issuance of a CWA §404 permit authorizing the discharge of materials into the Santa Clara River as part of a large-scale residential, commercial, and industrial development project in Los Angeles County. The proposed project would encompass approximately 12,000 acres, including 5.5 linear miles of the Santa Clara River and its tributaries. Despite environmental groups' arguments to the contrary, the Corps complied with the CWA because it properly considered practicability as required under the §404(b) Guidelines. In addition, the Corps complied with the ESA. Its determination that Southern California steelhead would not be affected by the project, as well as its corresponding decision not to consult with NMFS, were not arbitrary and capricious. And the Corps reasonably assessed the project's potential impacts to the steelhead and provided sufficient discussion to satisfy its NEPA obligations. Friends of the Santa Clara River v. United States Army Corps of Engineers, No. 15-56337, 48 ELR 20054 (9th Cir. Apr. 9, 2018).