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Clean Water Act Jurisdiction

This lesson can serve as either a comprehensive introduction to, or a comprehensive review of, the elements of Clean Water Act jurisdiction. It refers to cases that you may have studied in your Environmental Law course, but knowledge of the cases is not required in order to complete the lesson. In addition, no prior knowledge of the Clean Water Act itself or of the implementing agency regulations is necessary in order to complete this lesson, although the lesson can also reinforce your understanding of the elements of Clean Water Act jurisdiction if you have already studied those elements.

Finally, this lesson allows you to improve your skills in looking up statutory provisions, if you so desire. If you wish to use the "Statute Look-Up" mode of this lesson, you should have with you a copy of the Clean Water Act before you begin. You will not need any regulations in order to complete the Statute Look-Up mode.

If you do not have a copy of the statute, or do not wish to look up the relevant provisions of the Clean Water Act, this lesson will supply all of the statutory language that you need.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of the lesson, the student will be able to:
1. Identify some of the elements that must be met before Federal agencies can force a person or business to comply with the Federal Clean Water Act.
2. Discuss some of the elements of Clean Water Act jurisdiction under subsection (A) and subsection (B) of the statutory definition of "discharge of a pollutant."
3. Explain the Clean Water Act's definition of "point source" and its importance in the Clean Water Act.
4. Analyze the case of Solid Waste Agency of Northern Cook County v. United States Army Corps of Engineers (SWANCC) regarding "navigable waters."

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