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Mar 26, 2015

Environmental — No CERLCA Liability in Transformer Sales

Consolidation Coal Co. v. Georgia Power Co. (Lawyers Weekly No. 15-01-0270, 62 pp.) (Agee, J.) No. 13-1603, March 20, 2015; USDC at Raleigh, N.C. (Flanagan, J.) 4th Cir. Holding: In a split panel decision, the 4th Circuit affirms summary judgment for defendant Georgia Power Company in litigation by companies that bought PCB-contaminated used electrical transformers […]

Jul 25, 2014

Environmental – Litigation Strategy Left Intervention Too Late

Alt v. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (Lawyers Weekly No. 14-01-0706, 10 pp.) (Traxler, J.) No. 13-2200, July 14, 2014; USDC at Elkins, W.Va. (Bailey, J.) 4th Cir. Holding: In a West Virginia chicken farmer’s suit challenging the EPA’s enforcement action against her for polluted runoff, the 4th Circuit affirms a district court order refusing to […]

Oct 8, 2012

Environmental – Administrative – Licenses & Permits – Real Property — Fill — Wetlands – Freshwater

State ex rel. N.C. Department of Environment & Natural Resources v. Pharr The trial court’s findings of fact and conclusions of law make it clear that the Army Corps of Engineers’ issuance of fill permits to the defendant-landowners did not “tip the scale” in favor of the landowners. The trial court gave more weight to the opinions of the landowners’ experts than to the plaintif[...]

Jul 19, 2012

Environmental – Dam Plans — NEPA

Webster v. U.S. Dep’t of Agriculture The 4th Circuit upholds a decision by the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service to eliminate from its 35-year-old project for preservation of the Lost River Subwatershed its plan to construct one of five dams, a decision challenged by seven owners who say their land will be adversely affected by this decision; the NRCS has complied with the[...]

Jul 11, 2012

Municipal – Zoning – Auto Salvage Business – Alleged Oral Contracts – Due Process – County Code Violations — Environmental – Adjacent Superfund Site

Huggins, t/a SADISCO of Md. v. Prince George’s County, Md. A property owner who operated a salvage automobile wholesaling business on a parcel adjacent to Andrews Air Force Base’s CERCLA Superfund site, and whose business was cited for numerous county code violations, loses an appeal of the dismissal of its due process and state law claims against Prince George’s County, Md., for sh[...]

Jun 21, 2012

Environmental – Administrative – Licenses & Permits — Wildlife Refuge – Clean Water Act

Friends of Back Bay v. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers The “Friends of Back Bay” win their challenge to a Clean Water permit issued by the Army Corps of Engineers to a developer who wants to build a mooring facility and concrete boat ramp about 3,000 feet from the Back Bay National Wildlife Refuge in Virginia Beach; the 4th Circuit vacates a decision upholding the permit, as the Corps re[...]

May 9, 2012

Environmental – N.C. Road Project – NEPA Violation

N.C. Wildlife Federation v. N.C. Dep’t of Transportation The 4th Circuit vacates summary judgment for state and federal highway agencies in North Carolina that approved construction of the “Monroe Connector Bypass,” a new 20-mile toll road linking Mecklenburg and Union Counties; the agencies violated the National Environmental Protection Act by failing to disclose “critical assump[...]

May 2, 2012

Constitutional – Commerce & Contract Clauses – Real Property – Environmental – Landfill – Municipal – Administrative – Out-of-State Waste

Waste Industries USA v. State New landfill legislation affected in-state and out-of-state waste equally and was rationally related to public health and other benefits. It did not violate the Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution.

Mar 20, 2012

Environmental – SPCA – ‘Sedimentation’ – Body of Water Requirement – Golf Course

Applewood Properties, LLC v. New South Properties, LLC Defendants’ failure to control erosion on their development project deposited sediment only on plaintiffs’ land; no body of water was involved. Therefore, plaintiffs were limited to common-law remedies; they could not make out a claim under the Sedimentation Pollution Control Act.

Feb 23, 2012

Environmental – Administrative Review – I-81 Widening Project

Shenandoah Valley Network v. Capka, Adm’r The 4th Circuit dismisses an appeal by environmental and preservation organizations that challenge federal and state agencies’ planned improvements to Virginia’s Interstate 81 corridor under a tiered review p

Feb 13, 2012

Judge expected to dismiss criminal pollution case

A federal judge plans to dismiss a two-year-old environmental crimes case against poultry processor House of Raeford Farms and one of its turkey processing plant managers.

Nov 23, 2011

Administrative – Civil Practice – Subject Matter Jurisdiction – Final Agency Action – Environmental – Harbor Dredging – Beach Nourishment

Village of Bald Head Island v. United States Army Corps of Engineers The purpose of the Corps of Engineers’ project was to keep Wilmington’s harbor open, not to nourish Brunswick County beaches; the Corps’ promise to nourish those beaches with any beach-grade dredged material was not a final agency action. Therefore, the court lacks subject matter jurisdiction over plaintiff’s com[...]

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