Ninth Circuit Dismisses Challenge to Injunction in Delta Smelt Case
Posted in Court Decisions

The United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit has granted (pdf) a motion by appellees to dismiss an appeal pursued by the Natural Resources Defense Council and other organizations from an interim order enjoining one component of a reasonable and prudent alternative imposed by the Fish and Wildlife Service on operations of the Central Valley Project and State Water Project.  The order, which we reported on here, enjoined implementation of a water management action, referred to as the Fall X2 Action, which requires a combination of reservoir releases upstream from the Delta and reductions of water exports south of the Delta to maintain a monthly average location of two parts per thousand salinity (X2) no greater (more eastward) than 74 kilometers (km) from the Golden Gate Bridge in wet years, such as 2011.  The lower court had previously held that the Service's biological opinion and reasonable and prudent alternative violated the Administrative Procedure Act and Endangered Species Act, as we reported here.

The injunction was amended after it was initially issued to cover the period from October 15 to December 1, 2011, only.  Despite this fact, NRDC and others pursued their appeal even after the injunction expired.  The court held that because the period for implementation of the Fall X2 Action had passed, the challenge to the injunction was moot.

  • Paul S. Weiland

    Paul Weiland is Assistant Managing Partner and a member of the Environment & Land Use Group. He has represented clients – including public agencies, publicly regulated utilities, corporations, trade associations and ...

Nossaman’s Endangered Species Law & Policy blog focuses on news, events, and policies affecting endangered species issues in California and throughout the United States. Topics include listing and critical habitat decisions, conservation and recovery planning, inter-agency consultation, and related developments in law, policy, and science. We also inform readers about regulatory and legislative developments, as well as key court decisions.

Stay Connected




View All Nossaman Blogs
Jump to Page

We use cookies on this website to improve functionality, enhance performance, analyze website traffic and to enable social media features. To learn more, please see our Privacy Policy and our Terms & Conditions for additional detail.