Friday, July 31, 2015

City and County of San Francisco v. U.S. DOT

<> City and County of San Francisco v. U.S. DOT - 7/30/15. In the U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, Case No. 13-15855. The panel affirmed the district court's dismissal of an action brought by the City and County of San Francisco against the Secretary of Transportation and the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (the "Agency"), alleging claims under the Natural Gas Pipeline Safety Act of 1968 and the Administrative Procedure Act, arising after a natural gas transmission pipeline exploded in San Bruno, California, causing multiple deaths and injuries and widespread damage to property.

Rogers Cartage Company v. Monsanto Company

 

<> Rogers Cartage Company v. Monsanto Company - 7/27/15. In the U.S. Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit, Case Nos. 12-3624 & 13-3052. The government sued several potentially responsible parties (PRPs) regarding a cleanup near East St. Louis and many of those PRPs brought contribution claims against one another.

     One PRP, Rogers Cartage Company, settled with the other PRPs, but later it sought contribution from them again via a third-party complaint in a separate action. After that third-party complaint was severed and transferred back to the EPA action, the district court dismissed it and imposed sanctions against Rogers Cartage based on the settlement agreement. Rogers Cartage appeals those decisions, and the Appeals Court affirmed.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Organized Village of Kake v. USDA

<> Organized Village of Kake v. USDA - 7/29/15. In the U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, Case No. 11-35517. The en banc [full] court affirmed the district court's summary judgment in favor of the Organized Village of Kake, finding that the United States Department of Agriculture's promulgation of the Tongass National Forest Exemption to the Department's "Roadless Rule" (limiting road construction and timber harvesting in national forests) violated the Administrative Procedure Act; vacated the Tongass Exemption; and reinstated application of the Roadless Rule to the Tongass National Forest in Alaska. The U.S. Department of Agriculture declined to appeal, but intervenor-defendant State of Alaska appealed.

Wednesday, July 29, 2015

EME Homer City Generation, L.P v. EPA

<> EME Homer City Generation, L.P v. EPA – 7/28/15. In the U.S. Court of Appeals, D.C. Circuit, Case No. 11-1302. Consolidated with dozens of other cases. This major case involves the Clean Air Act regulations and the issue regulation of emissions in upwind States that may affect air quality in downwind States – the so called, "good neighbor provision." Petitioners challenge that EPA has overregulated emissions budgets.

     The Panel said: "To sum up: We hold invalid the 2014 SO2 emissions budgets for Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, and Texas, as well as the 2014 ozone-season NOX budgets for Florida, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia. We remand without vacatur to EPA for it to reconsider those emissions budgets. We reject all of petitioners' other challenges to the Transport Rule, including all of their facial challenges to the Rule. The petitions for review are therefore granted in part and denied in part."

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Chinatown Neighborhood Association v. Harris

<> Chinatown Neighborhood Association v. Harris - 7/27/15. In the U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, Case No. 14-15781. The panel affirmed the district court's dismissal of plaintiffs' amended complaint challenging California's "Shark Fin Law," which makes it "unlawful for any person to possess, sell, offer for sale, trade, or distribute a shark fin" in the state.

Tulalip Tribes v. Suquamish Indian Tribe

<> Tulalip Tribes v.  Suquamish Indian Tribe - 7/27/15. In the U.S. Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit, Case No. 13-35773. The panel affirmed the district court's summary judgment in a treaty fishing rights case in which the Tulalip Tribes sought a determination of the scope of the Suquamish Indian Tribe's usual and accustomed fishing grounds and stations.

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Environmental Integrity Project, et al v. EPA

<> Environmental Integrity Project, et al v. EPA - 7/20/15. In the U.S. Court of Appeals, Firfth Circuit, Case No. 14-60649. In this unpublished opinion, the Appeals Court denies a petition from environmental groups for review and uphold the EPA's final rule approving the Texas SIP which allows an entity to obtain a "flexible permit" for emissions up to a specified aggregate limit below the major source threshold.