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City of Evanston v. Northern Illinois Gas Co.

ELR Citation: 49 ELR 20061
Nos. 16 C 5692, (N.D. Ill., 04/09/2019) (Lee, J.)

A district court denied a city's motion for a preliminary injunction in a RCRA lawsuit against two utility companies that owned a long-abandoned manufactured gas plant. The city alleged that the plant had contaminated soil in a nearby park and around a decommissioned water main, and sought to require the companies, as the corporate successors to the original owners of the plant, to investigate and remediate the contamination. But the court found that the evidence presented by the city did not support its theory that the plant was the source of the contamination, nor did it show that the contaminants presented an imminent and substantial endangerment to health or the environment, as required under RCRA. Further, the city failed to demonstrate that it would suffer irreparable harm absent an injunction or that the balance of harms rested in its favor. Because the city failed to establish that it was likely to succeed on the merits of its RCRA claim, the court denied the city's motion.