Numeric nutrient criteria
Our client, The Mosaic Company, the world's leading producer of concentrated phosphate and potash crop nutrients, won a significant victory when Federal District Court Judge Robert Hinkle struck down the core section of EPA's unprecedented water quality criteria establishing numeric nutrient levels for Florida's streams and lakes. It is one of a few instances in which such standards have been invalidated upon judicial review. While upholding other sections of the EPA rule, the Judge agreed with Mosaic and a coalition of state and local authorities and industry groups that EPA had failed to employ sound science when it targeted nutrient levels without regard to what levels are actually necessary to protect the State's waters. Our team played a leading role in framing the winning argument for the state/industry/local government coalition, including drafting the reply brief argument that the Judge embraced. The Judge directed EPA promptly to promulgate a new rule premised on sound science, unless EPA instead approves the recentlypromulgated nutrient rule adopted by the Florida Department of Environmental Protection -- a rule which our client and others believe will fully safeguard Florida's waters without imposing hundreds of millions of dollars in needless costs by setting criteria that are not based on preventing harmful biological impacts from nutrients.