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Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc. v. United States Environmental Protection Agency

ELR Citation: 50 ELR 20142
Nos. 18-2121-ag and 18-2670-ag, (2d Cir., 06/05/2020)

The Second Circuit granted in part and denied in part a challenge to provisions of EPA's Mercury Reporting Rule that exempted certain manufacturers of mercury or mercury-added products from reporting requirements. An environmental group and the state of Vermont argued that three provisions of the rule, under which importers and manufacturers of products containing a mercury-added component were exempt from all reporting requirements, and importers and manufacturers of elemental mercury or mercury compounds in significantly large amounts were exempt from certain reporting requirements, constituted unlawful agency action. The court found that the exemption for importers of products containing mercury-added components was an unlawful interpretation of TSCA because it lacked a reasoned explanation, but that the exemption for manufacturers of products with mercury-added components and the exemption for high-volume manufacturers were lawful in light of Congress' directive to "not require reporting which is unnecessary or duplicative." It therefore vacated the exemption concerning importers of products containing mercury-added components, but denied review of the other exemptions.