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Group blames Biden open border policies for ‘environmental destruction’ despite admin’s push for enviro justice

By Brianna Herlihy | Fox News

A group claiming that President Biden’s border policies allowing record-breaking mass migrations are negatively impacting the environment is presenting a legal challenge that flips the script on the administration, which has pushed environmental justice as its “top priority.”

The Massachusetts Coalition for Immigration Reform is a nonpartisan group that advocates for reduced mass migration, based on environmental concerns. The group filed a lawsuit against the Department of Homeland Security, State Department and Department of Justice, saying that the government failed to achieve mandatory compliance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), which requires an environmental impact analysis on Biden administration policies prior to implementation.

According to the court order on Aug. 17, Judge Trevor McFadden of the D.C. Federal District Court denied all but two of the Justice Department’s motions to dismiss the environmentalists’ claims, allowing the case to continue.

“Environmental statutes like NEPA are often used in attempts to challenge government action,” William Lane, an attorney at Wiley Rein LLP and former DOJ Civil Division official, tells Fox News Digital. “The fact that most of the coalition’s claims survived the government’s motion to dismiss is a big deal. It shows that Judge McFadden is taking them seriously.”

Ken Cuccinelli, former Deputy Secretary of Homeland Security under President Donald Trump, says he believes the lawsuit has a strong factual basis, telling Fox News Digital that “the trail of environmental destruction” at the southern border is “substantial.” He added that while some Democrats have been focused on priorities like the Green New Deal, they have ignored environmental damage happening “in a massive scale” along the border.

The coalition is being represented by the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS), an independent think tank that conducts analysis of economic, social and other various impacts of immigration in the U.S. Two cattle ranchers along the southern border and four individual environmentalists are also named as plaintiffs.