Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

Waging War with CERCLA: Divisibility for the Sovereign
by Walker, David Lee, LL.M., The George Washington University, 2015, 67; 10187069
Abstract (Summary)

Waging War With CERCLA: Divisibility for the Sovereign Since its passage in 1980, the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), has been used to fund the cleanup of environmentally contaminated sites by assigning liability to the parties that were involved in the creation of these sites which led to a release or threatened release of an identified hazardous substance. CERCLA contains a waiver of sovereign immunity, effectively permitting liability to attach to the federal government for CERCLA related cleanup actions.

Under this liability scheme exists the difficult issue of how to reconcile CERCLA’s liability provisions with the demands of waging war. CERCLA can be retroactively applied, meaning the federal government can be, and has been, on the hook for past wartime production that created hazardous substance disposal sites. Under the premise that such a result does not comply with the intent of CERCLA, this paper explores the possibility of alternative outcomes for wartime production related CERCLA cases through an application of the doctrine of sovereign immunity, evolving common law principles related to strict liability and ultrahazardous activities, and recent United States Supreme Court precedent.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Paddock, Leroy C.
School: The George Washington University
Department: Law
School Location: United States -- District of Columbia
Source: MAI 57/04M(E), Masters Abstracts International
Subjects: Law, Environmental Law
Keywords: Cercla, Divisibility, Sovereign immunity
Publication Number: 10187069
ISBN: 9780355624410
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