Environment: A New Right to Sue Polluters

Many a private citizen yearns to sue the perpetrator of a public nuisance, only to find that he must show a direct personal injury to himself or his property.

If a paper plant fouls a town stream, a sport fisherman has scant chance of getting a court to halt the pollution. The judge is likely to rule that some government agency should do the suing —provided that it wants to. Even when a citizen is allowed to sue, the burden of proof is on him to show that a polluter has the technical capacity to...

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