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Monitoring Property and the Built Environment

BP P.L.C., et al. v. Mayor & City Council of Baltimore


BP P.L.C., et al. v. Mayor & City Council of Baltimore (U.S. Supreme Court, May 17, 2021): The U.S. Supreme Court reversed the 4th Circuit in an environmental case, holding that the lower court should consider all reasons the defendants raised for seeking to have the case removed from state court to federal court. In 2018, the City of Baltimore filed a lawsuit against BP and other energy companies alleging the companies concealed the environmental impact of fossil fuels that contributed to climate change. Similar lawsuits have been filed in state courts around the country. Localities believe they have a higher likelihood of success in state court. The defendants sought to remove the case to federal court where they believe they have a better chance to prevail. Maryland’s federal district court denied the request. The 4th Circuit Court of Appeals found that the defendants were not entitled to removal based on being “federal officers,” Rejecting other bases for removal as well. The Supreme Court reversed, finding that the 4th Circuit should have considered all grounds for removal to federal court and not just the “federal officer” argument. Read the full decision here.

View all cases in the Judicial Trends in Public Health – June 15, 2021.

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