09/12/2023 - Clean Water Act - Faculty - Supreme Court Decisions

Judicial Destruction of the Clean Water Act: Sackett v. EPA

by Richard Lazarus

Professor Richard Lazarus wrote an essay in three parts for the University of Chicago Law Review about the Supreme Court’s Sackett v. EPA ruling. In the first part he describes the ruling, reasoning, and impact of the majority opinion in Sackett. In the second part he describes the proffered ruling, reasoning, and—if ever adopted by the courts—impact of Justice Thomas’ concurring opinion, which Justice Gorsuch joined. And in the third part he demonstrates why the majority’s reasoning lacks merit and then, far worse, why the Thomas concurrence falls far short of the kind of competent, principled legal analysis that the public can fairly demand of its Supreme Court Justices. A pdf of the essay is available here.