Federal Supremacy, Sovereign Immunity, and Cooperative Federalism—The Relationship Between Federal Facilities and State Environmental Laws
Hawkins, Andrew T.
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This article addresses whether federal facilities located on state land are subject to state environmental regulations, specifically those regulations pertaining to state permitting and punitive fines, or are they exempt. It examines state and federal sovereignty, sovereign immunity, and the evolution of environmental regulations. Further, this comment reviews federal facilities provisions of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, the Clean Water Act, and the Clean Air Act. After analyzing recent cases to determine the authority of a state to require permits for federal facilities and to assess punitive fines for state violations, it discusses the importance of a state’s ability to address environmental violations through punitive fines.