TITLE

Bad Timing: The Ninth Circuit Takes NEPA Backwards

AUTHOR(S)
Askin, Michael
PUB. DATE
August 2007
SOURCE
Ecology Law Quarterly;2007, Vol. 34 Issue 3, p1045
SOURCE TYPE
Academic Journal
DOC. TYPE
Article
ABSTRACT
The 2006 Ninth Circuit decision Northern Alaska Environmental Center v. Kempthorne held that the Bureau of Land Management could move forward with a plan to issue oil and gas leases on the largest tract of untouched federal land in Alaska without conducting a site-specific Environmental Impact Statement. The court held that site-specific analysis could be deferred until the actual sites where oil and gas drilling would take place are known. This Note argues that Kempthorne misapplies prior National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) casela w and subverts the core purposes of NEPA. Prior casela w and NEPA itself dictate that environmental impacts must be assessed before a government agency irreversibly and irretrievably commits resources. The decision undermines the purposes of NEPA by discouraging agencies from taking an actual "hard look" at environmental impacts; by not requiring a holistic analysis of such impacts; and by limiting the role of public input in the process.
ACCESSION #
29306303

 

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