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Groups Sue EPA Over Ship Discharge Permit

Publication Date: 
January 12, 2009
San Francisco Chronicle (AP)
John Flesher

Professor and Director of the Environmental Law Clinic Deborah A. Sivas is quoted in an Associated Press article that appeared in the San Francisco Chronicle about a lawsuit concerning permits for discharge from ships:

Environmentalists sued the federal government Monday over a new policy that critics say does too little to prevent cargo ships from dumping invasive species into the nation's waterways.

The Environmental Protection Agency last month issued a court-ordered permit with rules for 26 types of discharges from ships, such as ballast water, oily bilge water and "gray water" from showers and sinks.


In their lawsuit filed with the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco, three groups contended the permit's requirements were too weak to meet Clean Water Act standards.

"The law does not allow EPA to do what's politically expedient," said Deborah Sivas, director of the Stanford Law School Environmental Clinic. "It requires what is necessary to protect our waters."

The clinic is representing Northwest Environmental Advocates, People for Puget Sound and the Center for Biological Diversity.