Description: Lawsuit challenging the 2021 issuance of nationwide permit to cover oil and gas pipeline projects.
Center for Biological Diversity v. Spellmon
Filing Date Type File Action Taken Summary 05/27/2022 Reply Download Reply brief filed by State of Montana in support of federal defendants' cross-motion for summary judgment. 05/27/2022 Reply Download Reply filed by NWP 12 Coalition in support of cross-motion for summary judgment. 05/20/2022 Reply Download Reply filed by federal defendants in support of cross-motion for summary judgment. 04/29/2022 Reply Download Plaintiffs filed reply in support of motion for summary judgment and opposition to defendants' cross-motions for summary judgment. 04/05/2022 Amicus Brief Download Brief filed by amicus curiae Chamber of Commerce of the United States of America. 04/01/2022 Amicus Brief Download Brief filed by Edison Electric Institute as amicus curiae in support of federal defendants' summary judgment motion. 03/25/2022 Motion for Summary Judgment Download Federal defendants filed memorandum in opposition to plaintiffs' motion for summary judgment and in support of cross-motion for summary judgment. 08/06/2021 Motion to Intervene Download Motion to intervene filed by American Gas Association et al. 05/03/2021 Complaint Download Complaint filed. Lawsuit Challenged 2021 Reissuance of Nationwide Permit for Oil and Gas Projects. Center for Biological Diversity and four other environmental groups filed a lawsuit in the federal district court for the District of Montana challenging the 2021 reissuance of Nationwide Permit (NWP) 12, a general permit covering oil and gas pipeline projects under Section 404(e) of the Clean Water Act. The groups alleged that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers did not comply with the Endangered Species Act, the National Environmental Policy Act, the Clean Water Act, or the Administrative Procedure Act, including because the Corps failed to adequately evaluate pipeline projects’ contribution to climate change. In particular, the groups alleged that the Corps failed to consider potential increased greenhouse gas emissions caused by pipeline construction and lifecycle emissions associated with oil and gas transported by pipeline projects. The court previously ruled that the 2017 issuance of NWP 12 violated the Endangered Species Act because the Corps failed to undertake Section 7 consultation. In the appeal of that earlier series of decisions, the Corps and other federal appellants have asked the Ninth Circuit to vacate the district court’s decisions because the case is now moot due to the reissuance of NWP 12 and President Biden’s revocation of the presidential permit for the Keystone XL pipeline—the focal point of the earlier litigation. Keystone XL was authorized under the 2017 NWP 12.