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Case Summary Citation

Protect Our Communities Foundation v. Jewell, 825 F.3d 571 (9th Cir. 2016).

Abstract

In Protect Our Communities Foundation v. Jewell, the Ninth Circuit upheld a right-of-way grant issued by the BLM for the development of the Tule Wind energy facility in the McCain Valley in southern California. In its decision to uphold the district court’s summary judgment ruling in favor of the Defendants, the Ninth Circuit reaffirmed National Environmental Policy Act (“NEPA”) standards of compliance for a satisfactory Environmental Impact Statement (“EIS”). The specific challenges raised by the Plaintiffs and addressed by the court were to the Statement of Purpose and Need, the Project Alternatives, the Mitigation Measures, and the “Hard Look” at Environmental Impacts. Additionally, the Ninth Circuit reaffirmed the limits of liability federal agencies are subject to under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act and the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act when approving of right-of-way grants for the development of wind energy facilities.

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