Locality Challenges US Army Corps of Engineers’ Permit Process

355px-United_States_Army_Corps_of_Engineers_logo_svgAccording to reports, another lawsuit has been filed in Louisiana by a locality seeking to stop fracking within its boarders.  This time, the United States Corps of Engineers has been sued in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana for its permit approval of hydraulic fracturing activity in wetlands. 

The Town of Abita Springs claims that the Corps did not follow requisite protocol prior to issuing a permit, such as a public hearing.  The permit allows an energy company the opportunity to perform vertical well drilling near Interstate 12 on an approximately 3 acre area of wetlands. 

The aforementioned suit follows from two recent lawsuits commenced by the Town of Abita Springs and the nearby St. Tammany Parish.  In both of those cases, the localities challenge the state government’s approval of hydraulic fracturing in the area. 

The three lawsuits are similar to other matters being advanced  in various jurisdictions that permit hydraulic fracturing.  Specifically, localities and environmental groups seek to stop fracking by asserting procedural and substantive challenges to state and federal entities that have determined that fracking is permissable in the relevant jurisdiction. 

Specifically, similar lawsuits are being addressed in California, New Mexico, Colorado, West Virginia and Texas.

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