DOI Didn't Justify Lifting Coal Leasing Moratorium
Law360 (April 19, 2019, 10:20 PM EDT) -- A Montana federal judge found Friday that a Trump administration decision to lift an Obama-era coal leasing moratorium without initiating the National Environmental Policy Act process was arbitrary and capricious.
U.S. District Judge Brian Morris said the U.S. Department of the Interior must perform a NEPA review to justify the order by former Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke, and asked the parties to confer and submit briefs as to what kind of injunctive relief should be put into place.
The defendants "circumvented any environmental analysis by characterizing the Zinke order as a mere a policy shift and return to the status quo,"...
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