Supreme Court Rules in Chevron Doctrine Case

Weakens federal power to regulate pollution, environmental harms.

view of facade of Supreme Court building

Supreme Court. Photo:

June 28, 2024 (BOSTON, MA) – The U.S. Supreme Court has overturned 40 years of precedent and practice comprising the “Chevron doctrine,” under which federal courts defer to an agency’s interpretation of ambiguous legal terms when Congress has given that agency authority to implement the law. The doctrine was at the center of a case brought by herring fishermen to invalidate rules to combat unlawful over-fishing. Conservation Law Foundation (CLF), which joined a brief supporting the rules, released the following statement in response.

“Most Americans are not focused on the connection between the arcane Chevron doctrine and the ability of Congress and expert agencies to stop unlawful fishing, toxic pollution, or other threats to their safety and the environment,” said Brad Campbell, President of CLF. “But they do see the new Supreme Court majority’s relentless steps – including today’s decision – to sacrifice their health and future at the altar of an extreme ideological agenda. As the Supreme Court enlarges its power and creates chaos in our legal system, state governments have an even greater obligation to provide the safeguards and standards that the Court is so eager to obstruct.”

CLF experts are available for further comment.