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Litigation

COURTS FACE KEY TEST ON SCOPE OF SUPERFUND LIABILITY FOR CAFO WASTES

In separate groundbreaking lawsuits, federal courts in Texas and Oklahoma are facing key decisions on whether Superfund cleanup and natural resource damage (NRD) liability apply to animal wastes generated by concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs).

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LANDMARK APPELLATE RULING MAY LIMIT FOREIGN REACH OF SUPERFUND

A recent federal appellate decision rejecting a Superfund suit by Philippine citizens may limit efforts to apply the law extraterritorially, including a key lawsuit over transboundary Canadian mining waste presently before the same court, according to legal observers.

However, other sources say the facts of the two cases are different enough that the ruling's impact on the second case could be limited.

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DRUG RULING MAY THWART BIDS TO LIMIT ENVIRONMENT LAWS' REACH

The Supreme Court's recent decision allowing federal prosecution of medical marijuana users under the Commerce Clause could prevent states' rights proponents from limiting EPA and other agencies' regulation of activities with only intrastate impacts, such as development and toxic releases affecting isolated waterbodies and intrastate species, environmentalist and industry attorneys say.

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RULING CREATES CIRCUIT SPLIT OVER PUBLIC'S ROLE IN GENERAL PERMITS

A recent federal appellate decision that says notices of intent (NOIs) for coverage under an EPA general permit are not subject to public participation creates a split between federal circuits and could spark Supreme Court review of whether the public can weigh in on decisions to grant individual dischargers coverage under general permits.

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ALEXANDER REBUFFS EPA OFFICIAL'S CALL TO REVISE CONSENT DECREE BILL

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN) has rejected an EPA official's suggestion to grant the federal government more authority when negotiating consent decrees as part of his controversial bill allowing courts to consider vacating the pacts every four years. Democrats and some agency sources are also beginning to criticize the measure over fears it could undermine compliance with environmental rules.

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EPA WEIGHING APPEAL OF BALLAST WATER RULING AHEAD OF REMEDY DECISION

EPA may appeal a landmark district court ruling requiring EPA to issue permits for ships' ballast water discharges after a federal judge hearing the case suggested the agency take the unusual step of appealing before the remedy phase of the trial is complete, according to sources involved in the case.

State and federal attorneys tracking the case say such appeals normally occur after the remedy phase is complete, but they are not unprecedented.

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COURTS FACE KEY TEST ON SCOPE OF SUPERFUND LIABILITY FOR CAFO WASTES

In separate groundbreaking lawsuits, federal courts in Texas and Oklahoma are facing key decisions on whether Superfund cleanup and natural resource damage (NRD) liability apply to animal wastes generated by concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs).

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Courts Face Key Test On Scope Of Superfund Liability For Animal Wastes

In separate groundbreaking lawsuits, federal courts in Texas and Oklahoma are facing key decisions on whether Superfund cleanup and natural resource damage (NRD) liability apply to animal wastes generated by concentrated animal feeding operations (CAFOs).

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EPA EXTENSION OF ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE PANEL FAILS TO CALM CRITICS

EPA's recent one-year extension of the charter of its long-standing environmental justice advisory committee has failed to alleviate some panel members concerns over the agency's commitment to the group, which they say plays a crucial role in ensuring that federal actions do not hurt underprivileged communities.

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FOURTH CIRCUIT SETS DATE FOR HEARING ON NAVY'S OLF APPEAL

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit has set oral arguments for July 20 in the Navy's bid to lift a permanent injunction that has halted all work on its planned outlying landing field (OLF) in rural North Carolina.

The case, National Audubon Society v. Department of the Navy, has garnered national attention as an acute conflict between national security and environmental law.

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