In April 2020, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of Hawaiian environmentalists who had waged a 12-year battle to ensure that sewage discharged into the Pacific Ocean via groundwater was subject to a Clean Water Act permit. CPR Member Scholars played important roles in convincing the Justices that we need a more scientifically relevant conception of the Clean Water Act’s coverage. On CPR's May 28, 2020 webinar, those scholars were joined by key litigants from the case.
CPR Board President Rob Verchick moderated the discussion, which touched on the history of the case, the legal and policy issues at stake, and what the decision might mean for the future of Clean Water Act regulation, permitting, and litigation. The legal experts also explored some of the underlying questions of statutory interpretation, agency deference, and more.
You can watch a recording of the webinar below, or on our YouTube channel.
- Read the Supreme Court's ruling in County of Maui v. Hawaii Wildlife Fund.
- Read Steph Tai, Karrigan Bork, and Thomas Harter's CPRBlog post, "Supreme Court Ruling Finds Old, New Middle Ground on Clean Water Act's Application to Groundwater."
- View and download the slide deck.