Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2003

Abstract

In 2001, the Fourth Circuit addressed the permit shield provision of the Clean Water Act and found it to provide broad-scale protection for polluters. In Piney Run Preservation Association v. County Commissioners of Carroll County, the Fourth Circuit held that facilities with discharge permits are protected from lawsuits even when discharging pollutants not contained within their permits. Under this ruling, permit holders may discharge, without fear of penalty, any disclosed pollutant within the reasonable expectation of the permitting authority. This decision is worrisome because it does not protect the goals of the Clean Water Act and deprives the public of information about pollutants in the environment.

Publication Title

Ecology Law Quarterly

First Page

429

Last Page

447

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