Thursday, March 21, 2013
Environment - "Justices uphold EPA's policy on logging road runoff"; BP rewrites history
Jeremy P. Jacobs, E&E reporter, wrote yesterday for Greenwire:
The Supreme Court today upheld U.S. EPA's policy for regulating stormwater runoff on logging roads in the Pacific Northwest.Jonathan H. Adler at The Volokh Conspiracy noted that ironically:
The 7-1 ruling in Decker v. Northwest Environmental Defense Center backed EPA's policy that logging roads are not industrial point-source pollution and consequently don't require Clean Water Act permits.
The decision is a blow to environmental groups like the Portland, Ore.-based NEDC, which argued that the channeled runoff carries sediment and other contamination into forest streams, polluting their ecosystems. It was widely welcomed, however, by the timber industry.
Justice Anthony Kennedy, who delivered the court's opinion, noted that days before the court heard arguments on the case in December 2012, EPA amended its policy and formally said the logging roads are not an industrial activity -- and thus do not require the permits.
The sole dissenter was Justice Scalia, who would have affirmed the decision of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit holding that NPDES permits were required. In Justice Scalia’s view, the plain meaning of the EPA’s implementing regulations required this result, even though the EPA argued for an alternative interpretation. So not only was Justice Scalia the only justice to support the position advocated by environmentalist groups (and the Ninth Circuit), he also rejected the interpretation advanced by the executive branch.In another story yesterday, CNET's Violet Blue has a story headed "BP accused of rewriting environmental record on Wikipedia: A British Petroleum representative allegedly rewrote 44 percent of the oil giant's Wikipedia page, including the environmental sections. Some Wikipedia editors are crying foul."
Posted by Marcia Oddi on March 21, 2013 09:56 AM
Posted to Environment