Environmental Group Lacks Standing to Challenge Extension of Natural Gas Pipeline.

The defendant, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), issued a certificate of public convenience and necessity to a company authorizing the company to extend a natural gas pipeline.  The plaintiff sued seeking a review of FERC's issuance of the certificate on behalf of its members who "work, live, and recreate" along a nearby river and were concerned about the exercise of eminent domain conveyed to the company under Section 7 of the Natural Gas Act (NGA) to secure rights-of-way.  The defendant claimed that the plaintiff lacked standing and the court agreed.  The court held that the plaintiff's desire to protect its members property due to the defendant's alleged non-compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and the Clean Water Act (CWA) was not within the "zone of interests that the NGA, NEPA or CWA protected.  The plaintiff did not claim that its members would suffer any environmental harm (thus, the NEPA claim failed) and the CWA claim failed because the plaintiff did not involve any allegation of pollution to navigable waters of the U.S.  The court also determined that an eminent domain claim was not a basis for a CWA claim.  Gunpowder Riverkeeper v. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, No. 14-1062, 2015 U.S. App. LEXIS 12532 (D.C. Cir. Jul. 21, 2015).