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Oklahoma v. United States Environmental Protection Agency

ELR Citation: 49 ELR 20091
Nos. 15-CV-0381-CVE-FHM and 15-CV-0386-CVE-FHM, (N.D. Okla., 05/29/2019) (Eagan, J.)

A district court denied Oklahoma's motion to preliminarily enjoin EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from enforcing their 2015 Clean Water Rule. The state sought to enjoin the 2015 Rule from being enforced until a final judgment was entered in the case. But the court found the potential harm from leaving in place the 2015 Rule was not so "certain and great" that it rose to the level of irreparable harm. The 2015 Rule has been in effect for varying periods of time since the case was filed, and the evidence Oklahoma presented—affidavits from private landowners who harbored vague plans to improve land that could now be subject to regulation and who were concerned that the 2015 Rule made their property less marketable—was not the type of harm that was so imminent and serious that it warranted the extraordinary remedy of preliminary injunction. The court therefore denied Oklahoma's motion.