Stormwater pollution flowing off of a scrap yard in NE Portland

Earthrise secures improvements to industrial stormwater discharge permits

Earthrise Law Center, on behalf of our clients Columbia Riverkeeper and Northwest Environmental Defense Center (NEDC), today successfully resolved a lawsuit challenging Oregon’s general permit for discharges of industrial stormwater

Thank You Rose Foundation

Thank you to the Rose Foundation for their grant to fund Earthrise’s Puget Sound work.

Wild Fish Conservancy Sues Cooke Aquaculture Over CWA Violations Related to its Atlantic Salmon Farming Facilities in Puget Sound

On behalf of Wild Fish Conservancy, on Monday, November 13th, Earthrise filed a lawsuit in federal district court in Washington against Cooke Aquaculture for Clean Water Act violations related to the near-complete structural failure of its Atlantic salmon farming facility in Deepwater Bay off of Cypress Island in late August.

Earthrise files brief with US Supreme Court over WOTUS

On behalf of our clients Waterkeeper Alliance, Center for Biological Diversity, Center for Food Safety, and several other organizations (“Waterkeeper”), Earthrise filed their opening merits brief in the U.S. Supreme Court on April 27, 2017, in the case captioned as National Association of Manufacturers v. Department of Defense, et al.

Court Ousts Oregon’s Water Pollution Clean-up Plans, Too Hot for Salmon

Yesterday, Earthrise and its co-counsel, on behalf of Northwest Environmental Advocates (NWEA), won a challenge against Oregon’s illegal water temperature standards, which change goals from cold temperatures to hot—and sometimes even lethal for salmon and other imperiled cold-water species. 

Earthrise Files Petition to Address “Zombie Permits”

Earthrise filed a petition today on behalf of the Northwest Environmental Advocates (NWEA), the Northwest Environmental Defense Center (NEDC), and fish advocate, Bill Bakke, seeking to force Oregon’s Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) to address the enormous backlog of administratively continued Clean Water Act permits, known as “Zombie Permits.”

Trump Instructs EPA to “Review and Rescind or Revise” Waters of the U.S. Rule

On February 28, 2017, President Trump signed an Executive Order (EO) instructing the EPA and Army Corps of Engineers (the “Agencies”) to begin a rulemaking to rescind or revise the Clean Water Rule, a 2015 regulation that defined the phrase “waters of the United States” (WOTUS) as used in the federal Clean Water Act (CWA), thereby identifying those waters protected by the Act’s restrictions on pollutant discharges.

Lawsuit Seeks New Toxic Standards for Washington State Waters

Today Earthrise filed a lawsuit on behalf of Oregon-based Northwest Environmental Advocates (NWEA) challenging EPA’s failure to respond to an 88-page petition submitted to the federal agency over three years ago, in October 2013. The petition seeks EPA’s action to update Washington’s water quality standards for toxics, primarily for the protection of aquatic life, such as salmon and steelhead.
Earthrise Attorneys Lia Comerford and Kevin Cassidy

Green River Trial Final Stages- Earthrise Seeks Cleanup

Last week, Earthrise brought the Green River in Illinois one step closer to being restored after decades of concrete dumping along its banks by an adjacent landowner and owner of a demolition and trucking company. In federal court in Rock Island, Illinois, on behalf of Quad Cities Waterkeeper and Prairie Rivers Network, Earthrise attorneys Kevin Cassidy and Lia Comerford presented evidence about the harm the unauthorized concrete dumping has caused to their clients and the Green River and urged federal judge Sara Darrow to order and oversee a comprehensive restoration plan.
Deception Pass Washington State Island in Puget Sound

Washington’s Refusal to Operate under Coastal Protection Law Could Lose the State Federal Funding

Longtime partners, Northwest Environmental Advocates (NWEA), represented by Earthrise attorney Allison LaPlante and Seattle attorney Paul Kampmeier of Kampmeier & Knutsen filed a lawsuit today against the EPA and NOAA for their failure to force Washington State to control polluted runoff in the state’s coastal watersheds, including Puget Sound. The lawsuit aims to force the agencies to impose Congressionally-mandated funding cuts on the State of Washington for failing to comply with a law that requires the state to protect coastal water quality.

EPA on Notice for Violations of the Endangered Species Act in New England

The Center for Biological Diversity and Northwest Environmental Advocates notified the Environmental Protection Agency last week that they plan to sue the agency for failing to consider the needs of endangered salmon and sturgeon when approving state water-quality standards in Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine, and Connecticut.

Magistrate Recommends NWEA Wins Suit Over Oregon Water Temperature Standards

Earthrise, along with co-counsel, Bryan Telegin, received a ruling from a federal magistrate judge this week recommending that our client, Northwest Environmental Advocates (NWEA), should win its suit challenging Oregon’s plans to clean up temperature and mercury pollution in Oregon’s rivers.

Earthrise Victory in Illinois: Concrete Dumping Violated Clean Water Act

In a precedent setting case, United States District Judge Sara Darrow, of the Central District of Illinois, ruled on September 29 that maintenance of an otherwise unpermitted levee is not exempt from the federal Clean Water Act.

Earthrise and NWEA Threaten Federal Lawsuit to Protect Puget Sound from Polluted Runoff

Earthrise attorney Allison LaPlante, representing Northwest Environmental Advocates (NWEA) is threatening the EPA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) with a lawsuit in 60 days over their failure to protected coasted threatened and endangered species in Washington State.

Public Nuisance PCB Suits Against Monsanto Could Have Far-Reaching Impact

“A recent flurry of suits by West Coast cities—seeking to hold Monsanto liable for allegedly polluting public waterways with PCBs it made decades ago—represents an intersection of hazardous waste and product liability law that could have a far-reaching impact on industrial product manufacturers, attorneys and scholars tell Bloomberg BNA.” Professor Craig Johnston spoke to Bloomberg BNA on what this could mean for hazardous waste law. 

FEMA Gets Legal Wake Up Call, Must Consider Salmon Habitat: Interview with Attorney Dan Rohlf

Dan Rohlf, Professor of Law and a Founding Member of Earthrise Law Center at Lewis & Clark Law School, discusses the changes FEMA must make to its flood insurance program to protect riparian areas crucial for wildlife – especially salmon.

EPA Must Update Toxic Pollutant Water Quality Standards for Oregon

On behalf of Northwest Environmental Advocates (NWEA), Earthrise has successfully resolved a lawsuit compelling the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to promulgate new water quality standards for the State of Oregon.
Salmon River in Idaho. A new court order requires EPA to set better arsenic standards for the sta...

NWEA Win Forces EPA to Establish Safer Arsenic Standard for Idaho Rivers

In a federal court-signed order today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) agreed to retract its 2010 approval of Idaho’s water quality standard for arsenic.
Connecticut River near Chang Farm

Earthrise Reaches Settlement to Protect the Connecticut River

Earthrise protects another river from polluters! Yesterday, the District of Massachusetts federal court approved a settlement that will require Chang Farms to comply with its Clean Water Act permit and cease its illegal discharges into the Connecticut River.
Invasive Zebra Mussel

Earthrise Wins Huge Case Against EPA Over Ballast Water

Today, the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals overturned the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Vessel General Permit (VGP) that governs the discharge of 21 billion gallons annually of ballast water—laden with invasive species—to the nation’s waters.
Pileated woodpecker

Rising Issues #11 Victories on Land AND Water

Read about our victories in the Snow Basin Timber Sale and Buffalo River cases.
Connecticut River near Chang Farm

Earthrise working to stop long-running pollution of the Connecticut River in Massachusetts

Earthrise working to stop long-running pollution of the Connecticut River in Massachusetts, sending notice of intent to sue letter to Chang Farms in Whately, Massachusetts.
Santa Clara River

Rising Issues #10, Spring 2015, Earthrise Wins Major Clean Water Act Case

Earthrise settled a major case against Magic Mountain theme park in California. Read, and hear, all about it in our recent newsletter!
Hogs in a CAFO

Hogs and the Buffalo River

Earthrise’s client, the National Park Conservation Association, has put out a great new video about the threat of waste from a hog farm near the Buffalo River and the reasons we are working with our clients in the fight to protect this national treasure. Please take a couple minutes to check it out!
Pilgrim Nuclear Power Station

Earthrise deals blow to nuclear power plant in Massachusetts

Judge’s ruling on standing prevents spent nuclear fuel from endangering community
Bonneville Dam

Victory that will slash toxic pollution in Columbia and Snake Rivers

Earthrise Director Craig Johnston recently spoke on Oregon Public Broadcasting about the historic victory against the Army Corps of Engineers regarding oil pollution from Pacific Northwest dams.

Rising Issues #7 Spring 2014

Spring Newsletter: Update on Chesapeake Bay TMDL Case, Alumni Highlight, Craig Johnston runs the Boston Marathon and Staff Transitions.

Rising Issues #6 Winter 2014

The winter edition of Rising Issues: CRC, VGP, Dan Mensher, and more!
Buffalo National River, Arkansas (National Park Service)

Arkansas DEQ Misrepresented Hog Waste Water Monitoring

2/12/14 - A press release issued today reports on a letter sent on behalf of Earthrise’s clients, charging the Arkansas DEQ with monitoring water for hog waste contamination in the wrong fields.

Rising Issues #5 Fall 2013

10/30/13 - Federal laws are for the birds…and the national rivers! Read about our work protecting national treasures in our latest newsletter.
Interstate Bridge in 1917

CRC Contradictions in the News

10/17/13 - Earthrise Managing Attorney Tom Buchele is quoted in a Willamette Week article about the latest on the proposed Columbia River Crossing.
Professor of Law Dan Rohlf (right) accepted the Salmon-Safe certification at the annual Sustainab...

Lewis & Clark earns Salmon-Safe certification

This fall, Lewis & Clark became the first private college to achieve Salmon-Safe certification.

KATV Reports on the Buffalo River Lawsuit

9/13/13 - KATV (Little Rock) reports on a fundraiser for the lawsuit brought by environmental groups against a hog farm near the Buffalo National River in Arkansas. Earthrise is of counsel on the suit.

Rising Issues #4 Summer 2013

8/23/13 - Read the summer edition of our newsletter, Rising Issues, featuring our latest achievements, our summer externs, staff transitions at Earthrise, and more!
Buffalo National River, Arkansas (National Park Service)

Conservation Coalition Files Suit to Protect Buffalo National River

8/7/13 - A coalition of conservation and citizen groups, represented by Earthjustice, Earthrise Law Center, and local attorney Hank Bates, filed suit in federal court yesterday to challenge approval of a hog farm near the Buffalo National River in Arkansas.

Earthrise Clients Win SLAPP Suit in Federal Court

7/24/13 - In an opinion released Monday, a federal judge in Portland ruled in favor of the defendants in a case that had all the earmarks of a classic SLAPP (strategic lawsuit against public participation).

Earthrise Awarded Grant from the Jackson Foundation

7/8/13 - The Jackson Foundation has awarded Earthrise Law Center a $2,000 grant for the Oregon Waters initiative.

Mountaineers Foundation Awards Community Grant to Earthrise

6/28/13 - The Mountaineers Foundation has awarded Earthrise Law Center a Community Grant for the second year in a row. The $3,000 grant will support the Oregon Waters initiative.
Buffalo National River, Arkansas (NPS)

Earthrise Helping to Protect Country’s First National River

5/8/13 - Earthrise is representing a coalition of environmental groups opposing a hog farm that could threaten the watershed of the Buffalo National River in northwest Arkansas.
Bull Trout

Earthrise and NWEA Secure Oregon Water Temperature Protections

4/11/13 - Yesterday a federal judge in Portland signed an agreement Earthrise negotiated on behalf of its client, NWEA, requiring more rigorous EPA oversight of Oregon’s setting of water temperature standards for the state’s rivers and streams.

In the News: Sierra Club Plans to Sue Railroads, Coal Companies

4/3/13 - Earthrise Clinical Director, Craig Johnston, is quoted in The Oregonian in an article about Clean Water Act violations by coal trains traveling through the Columbia River Gorge.
Chetco River

Court Rules for Coho Salmon and Questions In-Stream Gravel Mining Permit

3/28/13 - Earthrise’s client, the Northwest Environmental Defense Center, issued a press release regarding yesterday’s important court decision on in-stream gravel mining.

Earthrise Clients to Petition New Jersey Supreme Court on CSOs

3/28/13 - Earthrise clients will petition the New Jersey Supreme Court for review of an adverse decision by the Appellate Court regarding their challenge to New Jersey’s General Permit for Combined Sewer Overflows (CSOs).
Professor Allison LaPlante, Maggie Hall, Lia Comerford, Meredith Price, and Professor Craig Johnston

Supreme Court Decision, Decker v. NEDC

3/22/13 - On Wednesday, the U.S. Supreme Court handed down its long-awaited ruling in Decker v. NEDC. Earthrise Clinical Professor Allison LaPlante, together with third year students Lia Comerford and Meredith Price, submitted an amicus brief to the Court on jurisdictional issues.

Rising Issues #2 Winter 2013

2/14/13 - Read our winter newsletter, highlighting Earthrise students’ roles in Supreme Court briefing and in an herbicide case in eastern Oregon, plus more.
Professor Allison LaPlante, Maggie Hall, Lia Comerford, Meredith Price, and Professor Craig Johnston

Earthrise Faculty and Students Defend the Clean Water Act at the US Supreme Court

1/4/13 - Earthrise Law Center faculty and students gave their time and expertise to defend the Clean Water Act by writing amicus briefs related to two significant environmental cases in the Supreme Court’s 2012-2013 term.

Earthrise Wins Bench Ruling for Wallowa-Whitman National Forest

11/21/12 - Last Thursday, Earthrise Law Center won a ruling from the bench for its client, Blue Mountains Biodiversity Project, to partially vacate a US Forest Service decision that would greatly increase the use of herbicides in Oregon’s Wallowa-Whitman National Forest.

Rising Issues #1 Fall 2012

11/2/12 - Read our latest newsletter, with updates on our work in Arizona, New Jersey, and more.
Longwall mine plan, 1921 Missouri

Earthrise Digs In: CWA Violations in Pennsylvania Mines

10/29/12 - Earthrise, on behalf of its client the Center for Coalfield Justice, served notice today of CCJ’s intent to sue Alpha Natural Resources and Emerald Mine Resources for Clean Water Act permit violations in western Pennsylvania.

Suit to Clean Up New Jersey Combined Sewers Can Proceed

An appellate ruling last week rejected the NJDEP’s effort to short circuit a law suit brought by Earthrise Law Center’s clients. The suit seeks to revoke the NJDEP’s illegal Combined Sewer System permit.
?They took a beautiful river and buried it in concrete.?

PEAC Files Clean Water Act Suit in Illinois

7/26/12 - PEAC filed a complaint on July 19th in the Central District of Illinois alleging long-term and serious Clean Water Act violations.
Liv Brumfield

Earthrise Summer Law Clerk Gains Trial Experience

7/17/12 - Liv Brumfield, one of Earthrise’s five summer externs, writes about her experience supporting a team of attorneys in a week-long Clean Water Act trial in Wisconsin district court.

Win for Wallowa-Whitman

7/5/12 - A federal judge ruled in favor of PEAC and its client League of Wilderness Defenders/Blue Mountains Biodiversity Project, halting the spraying of herbicides in the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest.

PEAC’s Clients Litigate the CRC

7/5/12 - PEAC filed a complaint Monday against the Columbia River Crossing, on behalf of three conservation groups alleging inadequate study of health and environmental impacts.

Baykeeper asks court to force DEP to clean up N.J. waters

6/25/12 - Read about PEAC’s case in New Jersey, using the Clean Water Act to regulate sewage pollution and restore the New York-New Jersey Harbor and the rivers that flow into it.

Columbia River Crossing is a boondoggle taxpayers don’t deserve

6/21/12 - Read PEAC professor Tom Buchele’s op-ed in today’s Oregonian.
Bull Trout

Earthrise/PEAC Summer 2012 Newsletter

5/31/12 - Read up on the latest at Earthrise (formerly PEAC), including the Oregon temperature water quality standards victory, clinical experiences of our students, and collaboration with India.

PEAC Clients Put Magic Mountain Theme Park on Notice

4/30/12 - The LA Timesreports that environmental groups represented by PEAC have filed a 60-day notice letter asking Magic Mountain theme park in Valencia, CA, to stop discharging pollutants into the Santa Clara River.

PEAC’s Clients File Notice of Intent to Sue Columbia River Crossing Project

4/26/12 - On behalf of clients, PEAC has filed a 60-day notice of intent to file suit against the Columbia River Crossing project.

Mountaineers Foundation Awards PEAC Community Grant

4/19/12 - The Mountaineers Foundation has awarded PEAC a $4,000 grant for its Oregon Waters and Oregon Lands projects.

Buchele’s Letter for Clients on CRC Grabs Press Attention

3/23/12 - “Law professor challenges legality of CRC”: article in The Columbianfeaturing PEAC attorney Tom Buchele.

PEAC Featured in Articles on ESCO and CRC

3/19/12 - Two articles published in The Oregonian on Saturday featured PEAC: one on the ESCO Good Neighbor Agreement and the other on the Columbia River Crossing.

Portland Environmentalists and the Columbia River Crossing

3/8/12 - PEAC attorney Tom Buchele is quoted in this article on the Columbia River Crossing from ClimateWire: “How a bridge divides the environmentally conscious in Portland, Ore.”

PEAC Scores Big for Water Quality and Salmon

2/29/12 - PEAC attorneys Allison LaPlante, Dan Mensher, and Dan Rohlf helped their clients win a ruling on temperature standards that will help protect water quality, salmon, bull trout, and steelhead.

Proposed Downsizing of CRC Not Necessarily Good News for the Environment

2/6/12 - A proposed downsizing of the Columbia River Crossing project is not necessarily good for the environment and should be subject to environmental review and public comment.
Coos Bay, Oregon

Environmentalists Appeal Coos Bay Project

1/25/12 - A state dredging permit, approved last month, didn’t adequately consider the Port of Coos Bay’s plans for two new export slips, environmental groups say.

PEAC Helps Protect Waterfowl Along the Bayou Meto River in Arkansas

PEAC sent a 60-day notice letter to the Remington Arms Company regarding toxic discharge into the Bayou Meto River in Arkansas.

PEAC Fall 2011 Newsletter

Topics include the Boardman settlement, PEAC’s new class, California condors, and the CRC.

Local View: Case for new I-5 Bridge built upon faulty data

PEAC attorney Tom Buchele writes on the problems with the Columbia River Crossing’s Draft Environmental Impact Statement.

Rohlf and Team Now Three for Three in Protecting Salmon

A federal judge in Oregon ruled that the Obama administration’s attempt to make federal hydroelectric dams in the Northwest safer for protected salmon violates the Endangered Species Act.

PEAC Spring 2011 Newsletter

Topics include the Ballast Water Settlement, PEAC on video, and PEAC’s new Clinic Director and new staff attorney.

Suit Filed to Stop the Willamette River Dredging Project

PEAC alongside other environmental groups is filing suit against the Army Corps of Engineers for its plan to dredge in the Willamette River.
Ballast Water Discharge

Invasive Species Settlement: New Ballast Water Permit Should Help Protect American Coasts, Lakes and Rivers

Invasive Species Settlement: New Ballast Water Permit Should Help Protect American Coasts, Lakes and Rivers
Willamette River at Molalla SP

Article: The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality’s Ongoing Sleep Disorder

For a compelling glimpse into PEAC’s work to protect the Willamette watershed, read Steve Duin’s astute column on the Oregon DEQ’s failure to properly regulate Grabhorn Landfill.

PEAC Awarded $45,000 Grant by the Bullitt Foundation

PEAC receives a $45,000 grant through the Bullitt Foundation’s Urban Ecology and Ecosystem Services program.

Lawsuit Filed to Stop Release of Toxic Metals at Wisconsin’s Flambeau Mine

PEAC files lawsuit under the Clean Water Act to protect the Flambeau River from toxic mine discharge.

Planned Lawsuit over Water Quality Criteria for Toxics

A recent Inside EPA article focused on PEAC’s potential lawsuit on behalf of its client Northwest Environmental Advocates (NWEA).
Willamette River at Pisgah

Protecting the Willamette River

PEAC certified law student Jessica Johnson argued before the Oregon Land Use Board of Appeals on behalf of PEAC clients.

Analysis: New bridge will cost billions more in long-term

PEAC requested documents used by economist’s study of the proposed mega-bridge.

PEAC sends 60 day notice of its intent to file suit against Diversified Marine

On behalf of NEDC and Columbia Riverkeeper, PEAC sent a 60-day notice of its intent to file suit against Diversified Marine for violations of the CWA and RCRA.

PEAC and Yakama Nation attorneys obtain order blocking shipment of Hawaiian garbage

PEAC wins a preliminary injunction against the USDA, stopping waste-hauling companies from importing garbage from Hawaii through the Columbia Gorge.

Settlement Agreement Achieved for Endangered Aquatic Species

Oregon’s endangered aquatic species got a helping fin from PEAC attorney and clinical professor Allison LaPlante this week.

Ballast Water Discharges

Action to compel EPA to regulate ballast water discharges from ships pursuant to the Clean Water Act.