Citizen Suits

At Troutman Sanders, we have extensive experience with citizen suits, representing plaintiffs and defendants. Our attorneys have first-hand knowledge initiating, defending, settling and litigating citizen suits, with a particular emphasis on cases arising under the Clean Water Act (CWA), the Clean Air Act (CAA) and Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA).

For example, in New Mexico, we represented the largest electric utility on claims brought by the Sierra Club that coal ash was illegally disposed of under RCRA and the SMCRA. We settled that case after two years of negotiation, staying the entire litigation throughout the settlement process. In the Northern District of Illinois, we litigated United States v. Egan Marine Corp., a case involving the Oil Pollution Act. We also litigated one of the first “vapor intrusion” cases in the Southern District of Florida, involving two industry leaders, and the case ultimately settled on favorable terms. We are also representing the State of Utah in a suit against the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) seeking production for documents under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

We also represented a Fortune 20 pharmacy in major environmental enforcement actions involving hazardous-waste management and pharmaceutical-waste disposal in multiple states. We recently negotiated a comprehensive settlement with the State of California resolving hundreds of allegations concerning waste-disposal practices in the state.

  • Negotiated a $200 million global settlement in a CAA citizen suit involving a large western utility, citizen groups and the State of New Mexico to resolve allegations of over 60,000 opacity and Title V violations.
  • Prevailed before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit in a CWA citizen suit brought by a national environmental organization over wastewater-discharge temperature limits.
  • Represented a major manufacturing company in the settlement of a threatened citizen suit under the CAA for alleged violations of Volatile Organic Compound (VOC) and Reasonable Available Control Technology (RACT) requirements.
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