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After SCOTUS decision, others watching California's public nuisance lead paint action copied elsewhere
In the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court decision to deny paint manufacturers' appeal of a California ruling requiring them to pay more than $400 million for lead paint remediation, companies could face significantly greater odds of litigation under the theory of "public nuisance."
A Chicago federal judge has refused to sink a lawsuit by environmental activists alleging the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago has polluted waterways with excessive levels of phosphorus, ruling the district failed to show the activists contradicted themselves, by arguing in state court environmental permits do not significantly restrict phosphorus discharges, while arguing in federal court the permits do impose such restrictions.
A group of environmental action organizations appear to have more work ahead of them if they wish to persuade a federal judge that the region’s largest sewage treatment agency broke federal law and should be held responsible for what they have called unnatural levels of plant and algae growth in local rivers and streams, which the environmental groups claim is spurred by phosphorus in the treated water flowing from the agency’s sewage treatment plants.