CERCLA: Supreme Ct Affirms EPA's Authority to Issue PRPs Unilateral Orders

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On June 6, 2011, the Supreme Court denied a petition for certiorari by General Electric to hear the appeal of General Electric v. Jackson, a lengthy case in which GE had unsuccessfully challenged the constitutionality of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA). GE had argued that CERCLA Section 106 unconstitutionally violates due process because it authorizes the EPA to issue unilateral administrative orders to potentially responsible parties (PRPs) to clean up contaminated sites and effectively prohibited prior judicial review by making the risk of non-compliance penalties so onerous that no PRP would ever risk them.

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