Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance v. Norton, 237 F. Supp. 2d 48 (D.D.C. 2002)

Case Summary:

We represented the Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance and Natural Resources Defense Council in a challenge under the National Environmental Policy Act to the Department of Interior's approval of oil and gas exploration on the doorstep of Arches National Park in Utah. In 2002 the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that, in approving the project, the Department of Interior failed to comply with the National Environmental Policy Act. Specifically, the Court ruled that the Bureau of Land Management failed to consider alternatives to the proposed exploration and unlawfully relied on the permittee's insistence that there were no such alternatives, and that the Interior Board of Land Appeals failed to consider evidence that the mitigation measures BLM imposed were not effective in reducing the adverse environmental impacts of the project. The Court remanded the matter to the Interior Board of Land Appeals.

Plaintiffs: Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance, Natural Resources Defense Council, Wilderness Society, and Sierra Club

Court: United States District Court for the District of Columbia