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Case Summary Citation

Hawai'i Wildlife Fund v. County of Maui, 881 F.3d 754 (9th Cir. 2018)

Abstract

In Hawai’i Wildlife Fund v. County of Maui, the Ninth Circuit held that the plain language of the Clean Water Act provides jurisdiction over indirect discharges of pollutants from a point source into groundwater that is shown to be connected to navigable waters. The court found that studies confirmed pollutants entering the Pacific Ocean were fairly traceable to the County of Maui’s sewage disposal wells. In affirming the district court’s ruling, the Ninth Circuit held that Maui County violated the Clean Water Act by discharging pollutants into a navigable water without the required permit. The court also concluded the Clean Water Act provided fair notice to Maui County that its actions were prohibited.

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