Supreme Court Upholds Private Right of Action Under CERCLA


A unanimous Supreme Court has removed any doubt about a private party's right to sue for environmental response costs under the federal Superfund. In U.S. v. Atlantic Research Corporation, Case No. 06-562, the Court addressed the question left open by its prior decision in the

well-known case of Cooper v. Aviall Services, Inc., 543 U.S. 157, regarding whether a potentially responsible party ('PRP') may sue another under the Comprehensive

Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act ('CERCLA'), otherwise known as the Superfund. The Atlantic Research Court answered the question 'yes,' holding that the plain meaning of CERCLA Section 107(a)(4)(B) provides for such a cause of action.

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