Judge dismisses ESA “megasuit”

April 24, 2013 -  By

The lawsuit, Center for Biological Diversity and Pesticide Action Network North America v. Environmental Protection Agency, otherwise known as “the megasuit,” has been dismissed, the Responsible Industry for a Sound Environment (RISE) reports.

Judge Spero of the U.S. District Court Northern District of California granted the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) motions to dismiss. Hi decision mirrored the RISE-CropLife America motion to dismiss on several grounds, with the EPA also challenging the plaintiff’s lack of standing.

The case involved more than 380 pesticides and had widespread implications. Judge Spero dismissed the case on several grounds.

  • The plaintiffs failed to provide the minimum required information to support their claim that EPA did not meet its statutory obligations to consult with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on certain pesticide decisions. The court stated, “Plaintiffs have not even pled the ‘general factual allegations’ giving rise to each individual ESA [Endangered Species Act] claim, nor have they asserted individual ESA claims.”
  • The plaintiffs falsely tried to use ESA to avoid the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act’s due process and jurisdictional protections.
  • The plaintiffs’ claims relating to registration actions occurring prior to January 20, 2005 are barred by the six-year statute of limitations.

Judge Spero dismissed the plaintiffs’ complaint and has allowed 30 days in which they may re-file their lawsuit.  Plaintiffs will have 60 days (from the date of the entry of the order) to appeal the decision to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.

Check out Landscape Management’s recent coverage of this issue and see the story that appeared in the Oklahoma Farm Report.



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