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ENVIRONMENTAL Clean Up Costs; Arranger Liability; Punitive Damages


Where an owner of contaminated buildings sold the buildings to a company that tore them down and stored them in an open field that was later determined to be contaminated, the District Court properly found that the owner violated an EPA order governing use of the buildings incurring civil penalties, but there was conflicting evidence on whether the buyer intended to reuse the buildings after it disassembled them, so the court’s judgment on arranger liability is reversed because the issue of the owner’s intent should not have been decided at summary judgment since the buildings were not hazardous products themselves and the record did not support a finding that they were viewed by the owner or buyer as merely waste, and the punitive damages award was error since the fund did not incur costs to clean up the tear down site thus no costs were incurred as a result of the violation of the EPA order.Remand for redetermination

Opinion concurring in part; dissenting in part by Loken, J.: “I concur in Parts II.A. and II.B.2. of Judge Bye’s opinion. I also agree that Dico is subject to an award of civil penalties for willful violation of an administrative order but would remand for redetermination of the amount of the penalties and therefore respectfully dissent in part from Part II.B.1.”

Opinion concurring in part; dissenting in part by Kelly, J.: “I agree with the court’s decision to affirm the summary judgment order with respect to the EPA order violation and civil penalties. I disagree that the District Court erred in granting summary judgment on the question of arranger liability, and therefore with this court’s decision to reverse the District Court’s award of punitive

damages on that basis. Therefore, I respectfully dissent from Part II.A of the court’s opinion and the portions of Part II.B that discuss punitive damages.”

Judgment is reversed in part; affirmed in part.

14-2762 U.S. v. Dico, Inc., appealed from the District of Iowa, Bye, J.