United States Ninth Circuit

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Alaska Wilderness League v. US Environmental Protection Agency, 12-71506

Petition for review of an EPA decision, denying a challenge to a Clean Air permit that allowed Shell Offshore Inc. to conduct "pollutant emitting activities" associated with the drill vessel Kulluk in the Beaufort Sea off Alaska's North Coast and granted Shell a requested exemption of 500 meters surrounding Kulluk from "ambient air" regulations, is denied where: 1) Section 7661c(e) is ambiguous and the EPA's interpretation is reasonable under the applicable statutes' plain language, and thus Chevron deference is owed to the EAB decision not to require a preconstruction increment analysis for the Kulluk; and 2) the EPA permissibly granted the 500-meter exemption.

Appellate Information

  • Decided 08/15/2013
  • Published 08/15/2013


  • Smith


  • United States Ninth Circuit