In case you missed it...

Date01 June 2022
In the Courts
"In the Courts" contains full summaries of court cases reported in ELR Update during the month of April 2022. They are
listed under the following categories: Air, Climate Change, Land Use, Natural Resources, Toxic Substances, Water, and
Wildlife. The summaries are then arranged alphab etically by case name within each category. To access ELR's entire col-
lection of court cases and summar ies, visit
PennEnvironment, Inc. v. United States Steel Corp., No. 19-
484, 52 ELR 20040 (W.D. Pa. Mar. 31, 2022). A district
court denied environmental groups’ motion for part ial sum-
mary judgment in a CA A citizen suit brought against a steel
company concerning hydrogen sulde a nd sulfur dioxide
emissions at its production facilities in Pennsylva nia. e
groups argued the company repeated ly violated the CA A,
the Pennsylvania SIP, and Title V operating permits at three
plants. e company argued t he groups did not have standing
to challenge al l of the violations they alleged —over 12,000
days of exceeding emi ssion limits—becau se they had not
shown they had standi ng for e ach violation. e court found
that while it was not necessa ry for each group member to have
standing to sue for every v iolation alleged, it was necessar y for
some members to have standing for each violation, and t hat
the groups had not shown that their members’ injuries were
fairly traceable to al l of the alleged violations. It denied the
groups’ motion for partial summa ry judgment.
Mayor and City Council of Baltimore v. BP P.L.C., No. 19-
1644, 52 ELR 20044 (4th Cir. Apr. 7, 2022). e Fourth
Circuit armed a dist rict court order that remanded to state
court the city of Baltimore’s climate change lawsuit again st
oil companies. e city al leged it sustained climate change-
related injuries, including an increa se in sea levels, storms,
oods, heatwaves , droughts, and ex treme precipitation, from
greenhouse gas pollution to which t he companies had sub-
stantially contributed. e di strict court found that none of
the companies’ grounds for removal justi ed retaining federal
jurisdiction, and remanded back to st ate court. e appellate
court had concluded it only had authority to review t he part
of the order decided under the federal ocer remova l statute,
and thus lacked jurisd iction to review the district court’s re-
jection of the companies’ other grounds. e U.S. Supreme
Court held that the appellate c ourt erred in concluding it was
not permitted to review all of t he district court’s order, va-
cated the decision, and remanded. e appellate court then
found that none of the companies’ bases for removal perm it-
ted the exercise of federal jurisd iction, and that Baltimore’s
claims did not belong in federa l court because the city relied
exclusively on state-law claims to remedy its injuries. It af-
rmed the district c ourt’s remand order.
San Mateo, County of v. Chevron Corp., Nos. 18-15499, 18-
15502, 18-15503, and 18-16376, 52 ELR 20049 (9th Cir.
Apr. 19, 2022). e Ninth Circuit again armed a district
court order that remanded to state cou rt several California
counties’ and cities’ lawsuit against oil and gas compan ies
alleging state-law claims arising f rom global warming. e
district court c onc lude d that none of the companies’ grounds
for removal—federal quest ion, federal enclave, federal ocer,
bankruptcy, and admir alty—were warra nted, and remanded
back to state court. e appellate court had armed t he dis-
trict court’s determination that there wa s no jurisdiction un-
der the federal ocer removal stat ute, and dismissed the rest
of the companies’ appeal for lack of jurisd iction. e U.S.
Supreme Court vacated the appellate cour t’s judgment, and
remanded in light of its ruli ng in BP P.L.C. v. Mayor & City
Council of Baltimore, which held that a federal appeals court
is permitted to review a federa l judge’s entire remand order.
e appellate court then considered a ll of the companies’ bas-
es for removal, but rejected their interpretations of removal
jurisdiction and adhered to the long-sta nding principle that
federal courts shou ld narrowly limit their reach to protect the
jurisdiction of state courts. It armed the district court’s re-
mand order.
Oregon Natural Desert Ass’n v. Bushue, No. 3:19-cv-1550 -SI,
52 ELR 20039 (D. Or. Mar. 29, 2022). A district c ourt denied
environmental groups’ motion for a temporary restra ining or-
der in a challenge to BLM’s authorization of livestock gr azing
on pastures containing research natural areas (R NAs). e
groups argued BLM’s regulations required fencing to be in-
stalled to section o the R NAs so they would not be grazed,
and baseline data to be provided for rese arch into greater sage-
Copyright © 2022 Environmental Law Institute®, Washington, DC. Reprinted with permission from ELR®,, 1-800-433-5120.

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