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Animal Law Podcast #60: The Case of the Slaughterhouse Water

By Mariann Sullivan — May 27, 2020

On this episode of the Animal Law Podcast, I speak with Alexis Andiman and Sylvia Lam about Cape Fear River Watch v. United States Environmental Protection Agency, a case currently pending in the Fourth Circuit, in which their clients challenge the EPA’s guidelines for the amount of pollution that slaughterhouses are permitted to emit into waterways. With slaughterhouses in the news for other reasons, here is one more way in which they are causing enormous harm with which we should all be familiar. Fortunately, the Clean Water Act sets standards and guidelines, but, unfortunately, they are not being followed. This lawsuit seeks to set that right.

Alexis Andiman is staff attorney with the Sustainable Food & Farming Program at Earthjustice, where she works to improve our nation’s food system, from crop selection and farming practices to food processing and accessibility. Prior to joining Earthjustice, Alexis completed fellowships with the Conservation Law Center and Clinic at Indiana University’s Maurer School of Law and the Center for Biological Diversity. She received her J.D. with honors and a Certificate in Environmental and Natural Resources Law from Lewis & Clark Law School. While in school, Alexis worked as a legal writing teaching assistant and interned with a variety of environmental and conservation organizations, including Columbia Riverkeeper, Advocates for the West, and the Earthrise Law Center.

Sylvia Lam works as a staff attorney at the Environmental Integrity Project. She joined EIP in 2015 and works primarily on litigation relating to Clean Water Act rulemaking and enforcement matters as well as the Freedom of Information Act. She holds a J.D. from the University of Southern California Gould School of Law. During law school, Sylvia interned for EIP, the Environmental Law Institute, U.S. EPA Region III’s Office of Regional Counsel, and the Land Law Section of the California Office of the Attorney General. Prior to law school, she worked for an environmental consulting firm, where she analyzed the implications of climate change on U.S. water security.


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