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Environmental brief ~ US meatpackers sue to reopen cattle trade with Canada

[JURIST] In Thursday's environmental law news, the US meatpackers industry group [corporate website] has filed a complaint in the US District Court of District of Columbia to lift a ban on the import of all cattle from Canada. Documents from the case, AMI vs. DeHaven and Johanns, are not yet online. Currently, the USDA [official website] is set to allow the import of cattle and beef products from cattle under 30 months of age, and continue to ban cattle and beef products from those over 30 months, starting March 7. The meatpackers argue that the 30-month age cutoff is arbitrary and does not affect whether consumers or other cattle are a risk for BSE (mad-cow disease). The meatpackers are opposed by a number of groups, including US ranchers, who want the ban to stay in effect. AP has more.

In other news...

  • The Sudan 1 red dye food recall [JURIST report] has expanded beyond the UK to 15 other countries, including Canada and the US. Sudan 1 is believed to be a carcinogen in humans and has been banned from use in food products. The dye apparently found its way into some chili powder that has since been incorporated into over 400 food products. The Guardian has more.

  • Teresa Chambers [biography], former Chief of Police of the US Park Police Force [official website], has filed a complaint [text, PDF] against the Department of Interior, claiming that DOI illegally destroyed documents relating to her employment. Chambers was forced to resign in December 2003 for misconduct and performance-related issues. Chambers claims that performance evaluations that would show those charges to be fabricated have been destroyed. Public Employee for Environmental Responsibility has more.

  • The National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS)[official website] seeks comments on a proposed rule [text] that would implement a variety of methods to hopefully reduce the number of vermilion snapper [NOAA factpage] caught in the Gulf of Mexico by 25 percent of the 2003 harvest. If approved, the changes would remain in effect for 10 years. Comments can be made here until April 25.

  • The EPA [official website] seeks comments on a proposed rule [text] that would create a new Ocean Dredged Material Disposal Site seven miles off the coast of Port Royal, SC. The Army Corps of Engineers [official website] grants permits to persons and other state and federal agencies that want to dispose of dredged material in the oceans. The proposed site would be used to dispose of material from a variety of federal projects in the South Carolina area. Comments can be made here until April 11.

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Paper Chase is JURIST's real-time legal news service, powered by a team of 30 law student reporters and editors led by law professor Bernard Hibbitts at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law. As an educational service, Paper Chase is dedicated to presenting important legal news and materials rapidly, objectively and intelligibly in an accessible format.

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