From the first days of Superfund litigation, lawyers and courts have complained that Congress did not distinguish itself when drafting the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA), 42 U.S.C. Sections 9601-75. As the law has developed, court decisions have created additional problems. The interplay among the private cost recovery provision of Section 107(a)(1-4)(B) and the contribution provisions of Section 113(f)— all informed by the statute of limitations of Section 113(g)—have created a very substantial, practical settlement problem. But the problem is a little obscure, a bit of a mind pretzel.
I discuss this complexity in my column for the Legal Intelligencer supplement, Pa. Law Weekly titled “The Superfund Contribution Mind Pretzel…or One of Them,” 43 Pa. L. Weekly 6 (Feb. 11, 2020). Read the full column.