Description: Lawsuit challenging the 2021 issuance of nationwide permit to cover oil and gas pipeline projects.
Center for Biological Diversity v. Scott
Filing Date Type File Action Taken Summary 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.