Jenner & Block

Federal Appeals Court Rejects States’ Request To Close Chicago Locks Over Asian Carp

Torrence_Allison_COLORBy Allison A. Torrence


In 2010, the states of Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin sued the United States Army Corp of Engineers and the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago, seeking injunctive relief aimed at preventing Asian carp from entering into Lake Michigan through the man-made Chicago Area Waterway System ("CAWS"), which connects Lake Michigan to the Mississippi River. The plaintiffs claimed that the defendants were managing the CAWS in a manner that will allow the invasive Asian carp to move into Lake Michigan and thereafter the other Great Lakes, causing an ecological disaster that amounts to a public nuisance under federal common law. The district court for the Northern District of Illinois denied plaintiffs' request for a preliminary injunction seeking, among other actions, the closure of the City of Chicago locks connecting the CAWS to Lake Michigan.

TAGS: Climate Change, Sustainability, Toxic Tort, Water

PEOPLE: Allison A. Torrence