Press Releases

Viewing recent news releases in program Climate Law Institute .

Lawsuit Filed to Protect Habitat for 12 Endangered Coral Species

Aug 21, 2019

WASHINGTON— The Center for Biological Diversity sued the Trump administration today for failing to protect 12 coral species around Florida and islands in the Pacific Ocean. The corals all received Endangered Species Act protection in 2014, but they did not receive the critical habitat protection the law requires.

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Lawsuit Takes on Trump’s Dirty Power Plan

Aug 14, 2019

WASHINGTON— Ten environmental groups sued Trump’s Environmental Protection Agency today to overturn the administration’s Dirty Power Plan and reinstate the Obama-era Clean Power Plan.

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Trump Visit to Plastic Plant Ignores Pollution Crisis, Outdated Federal Rules

Aug 13, 2019

MONACA, Pa.― President Donald Trump’s visit today to a massive plastics plant being built in Pennsylvania by Royal Dutch Shell ignores the plastic pollution and toxic chemicals such plants are allowed to release under decades-old federal regulations. Local groups protested today’s visit and the petrochemical industry’s plan to increase U.S. plastic production using the oversupply of fracked natural gas.

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Lawsuit: Trump Is Failing to Protect Emperor Penguins From Climate Crisis

Jul 31, 2019

WASHINGTON— The Center for Biological Diversity sued the Trump administration today for failing to act on a petition to protect emperor penguins under the Endangered Species Act.

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Lawsuit Launched Over Trump Administration’s Approval of Oil-waste Dumping in California’s Arroyo Grande Aquifer

Jul 25, 2019

SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif.— The Center for Biological Diversity filed a notice today of its intent to sue the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for ignoring threats to endangered wildlife in its recent approval of an aquifer exemption in the area around the Arroyo Grande oilfield.

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Legal Petition Seeks Ban on Plastic Pollution From Petrochemical Plants

Jul 23, 2019

WASHINGTON― More than 270 community and conservation organizations filed a legal petition today that demands the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency adopt strict new water-pollution limits for industrial plants that create plastic.

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Lawsuit Forces Trump Administration to Consider Oil Drilling’s Harm to Endangered Wildlife in Gulf of Mexico

Jul 19, 2019

TAMPA, Fla.— Prompted by a lawsuit filed by three conservation groups, the Trump administration has finally agreed to complete a legally required consultation about the harm offshore oil drilling does to whales and other threatened and endangered wildlife in the Gulf of Mexico.

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Congressional Resolution Declares Climate Emergency

Jul 09, 2019

WASHINGTON— Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) and Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) unveiled a concurrent resolution today to declare the climate crisis an emergency warranting a “massive-scale mobilization to halt, reverse and address” its consequences.

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Louisiana to Hold Hearing on Massive Formosa Plastics Toxic Chemical Complex

Jul 08, 2019

ST. JAMES PARISH, La.— Louisiana will hold a public hearing on issuing 15 air permits for Taiwanese company Formosa Plastics. The massive proposed complex would be one of the largest and most toxic plastic production facilities in the world.

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Federal Court Rules Formosa Plastics Is Liable for Plastic Pollution in Texas

Jun 28, 2019

VICTORIA, Texas— A federal judge in Texas on Thursday found Formosa Plastics liable for polluting Texas waterways with billions of plastic pellets from its plant in Point Comfort. The Taiwanese company is currently seeking permits to build an even larger plastic-making plant along the Mississippi River in St. James Parish, La., a project strongly opposed by local residents and national conservation groups.

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California to Evaluate Curbing Oil, Gas Extraction

Jun 28, 2019

SACRAMENTO, Calif.— Gov. Gavin Newsom Thursday signed into law this year’s California budget, which includes the allocation of $1.5 million toward a study to “identify strategies to decrease demand and supply of fossil fuels.” The provision marks the first step the state has taken toward decreasing the state’s fossil fuel production.

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Trump Administration to Dredge San Francisco Bay to Make Room for More Oil

Jun 25, 2019

OAKLAND, Calif.— Public-interest groups filed a joint letter Monday with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers strongly warning against efforts to dredge a deeper channel through San Francisco Bay.

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Trump's EPA Finalizes Dirty Power Plan

Jun 19, 2019

WASHINGTON— The Trump administration’s Environmental Protection Agency today released its final rule that scraps the Clean Power Plan and lets states decide whether, and how, to limit power-plant pollution.

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Trump Administration Sued for Failing to Protect Imperiled Ice Seals’ Arctic Habitat

Jun 13, 2019

WASHINGTON— The Center for Biological Diversity sued the National Marine Fisheries Service today for failing to designate critical habitat in Alaska for two ice-seal species. Both bearded and ringed seals are listed as threatened under the Endangered Species Act because climate change is melting their Arctic sea-ice habitat.

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Appeals Court Throws Out Case Blocking Keystone XL Tar Sands Pipeline, Relying on New Permit Issued by President Trump

Jun 06, 2019

SAN FRANCISCO— The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals dismissed a legal challenge to the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline, ruling the case was no longer active due to President Trump’s revocation of the permit at the center of the case. In March, Trump issued a new “presidential” permit for Keystone XL, in an effort to spur construction of the pipeline.

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Lawsuit Launched to Force Trump EPA to Protect California’s Ventura County From Deadly Smog

Jun 04, 2019

VENTURA, Calif.— The Center for Biological Diversity and Center for Environmental Health filed a notice today of their intent to sue the Trump administration for failing to finalize plans to curtail dangerous smog in Ventura County, Calif.

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Court Urged to Reject Discrimination Against Arizona Rooftop-solar Customers

Jun 04, 2019

PHOENIX— The Center for Biological Diversity today took legal action in a federal court to challenge an Arizona power-utility company’s discrimination against rooftop-solar customers.

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Rally to Oppose Dangerous Oil-industry Injections in Santa Maria Aquifers

Jun 03, 2019

SANTA MARIA, Calif.— Santa Barbara County residents and environmental advocates will rally Wednesday against a proposed aquifer exemption that could pollute groundwater and drastically expand oil drilling in the county. The rally will precede the state’s public meeting on the proposal.

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2019 Hurricane Predictions Spell Disaster for Coastal Communities, Wildlife

May 30, 2019

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla.— The 2019 Atlantic hurricane season officially starts on Saturday, with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicting a total of nine to 15 named storms and as many as four major hurricanes.

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Lawsuit Launched to Protect Hawaii’s Cauliflower Coral After 36 Percent Decline

May 29, 2019

HONOLULU— The Center for Biological Diversity today filed a notice of intent to sue the Trump administration for failing to protect cauliflower coral around the Hawaiian Islands. The bushy, shallow-water coral species has been devastated by ocean warming triggered by human-caused climate change.

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Disregarding Climate, Trump Administration Pushes to Re-open Public Lands to Coal Leasing

May 22, 2019

WASHINGTON— The Trump administration today restarted an effort to reopen public lands to new federal coal leasing. In today’s action, the Interior Department responded to a court order overturning its illegal nixing of a nationwide coal leasing moratorium with a highly abbreviated environmental review.

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Rallies in Bakersfield, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara to Oppose Trump's Oil-leasing Plan for California

May 20, 2019

BAKERSFIELD, Calif.— Environmental and community groups joined by elected officials will hold rallies this week to blast the Trump administration’s draft plan to open more than a million acres of public land and mineral estate in central California to oil drilling and fracking. The rallies will precede each of the U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s public hearings in Bakersfield, San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara.

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Pipeline Shutdown Prevented 27 Million Tons of Carbon Pollution in California

May 17, 2019

SANTA BARBARA, Calif.— The closure of Plains All American Pipeline’s coastal California oil pipeline after it ruptured four years ago has prevented massive emissions of climate pollution. If the seven offshore drilling platforms served by the pipeline had not gone idle, they would have added 27 million metric tons of carbon dioxide pollution to the atmosphere. That’s roughly equivalent to operating two coal-fired power plants in California over the same period — or burning almost 30 billion pounds of coal.

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Lawsuit Challenges Trump Administration Approval of Massive Utah Oil Shale Development

May 16, 2019

BONANZA, Utah— Conservation groups today sued the Trump administration to challenge what would be the nation’s first commercial-scale oil shale mine and processing facility. The lawsuit says officials failed to protect several endangered species when they approved rights-of-way across public lands to provide utilities to the proposed oil shale development.

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Report: Trump Fracking Leases Top 1 Gigaton of Potential Climate Pollution in Lower 48

May 15, 2019

TUCSON, Ariz.— A new Center for Biological Diversity report shows that the Trump administration is dramatically ramping up oil and gas leases, offering nearly 5 million acres of public lands in the lower 48 states ― most of it in Wyoming and Utah. Those leases, offered as scientists warn that fossil fuels should be rapidly phased out, contain 1 gigaton of potential greenhouse gas pollution.

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Trump Finalizes Plan to Open 725,500 Acres of California's Central Coast to Drilling, Fracking

May 09, 2019

MARINA, Calif.— The Trump administration today finalized a plan to open 725,500 acres of public lands and mineral estate across California’s Central Coast and the Bay Area to new oil and gas drilling. The U.S. Bureau of Land Management plan is an increase of nearly 327,000 acres from the draft proposal prepared under the Obama administration.

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Oregon Denies Key Permit for Proposed Jordan Cove Natural Gas Project

May 06, 2019

SALEM, Ore.— The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality today issued a resounding denial of the proposed Jordan Cove LNG project and the Pacific Connector fracked gas pipeline, which have faced fierce opposition from a grassroots coalition for more than a decade. The denial effectively stops the project from moving forward.

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