Unpublished Disposition, 872 F.2d 430 (9th Cir. 1989)

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US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit - 872 F.2d 430 (9th Cir. 1989)

PILE DRIVERS LOCAL UNION NO. 2375, Plaintiff-Appellant,v.Manuel LUJAN, Jr., Secretary of the United States Departmentof Interior, Chevron U.S.A. Inc., a corporation,Defendants-Appellees

No. 88-5905.

United States Court of Appeals, Ninth Circuit.

Argued and Submitted Feb. 9, 1989.Decided March 23, 1989.

Before WALLACE, FARRIS and BEEZER, Circuit Judges.


Pile Drivers Local Union No. 2375 appeals the district court's dismissal, on the grounds that it lacked standing, of its claims concerning Chevron's failure to employ local labor on two oil and gas production platforms located on Outer Continental Shelf tracts leased from the Department of Interior. Pile Drivers charged Chevron with fraudulently representing in environmental reports that a majority of the platform installation workers would be hired locally and with failing to comply with those representations. Pile Drivers charged Interior with failing to implement regulations requiring OCS oil and gas lessees to comply with representations made in environmental reports and failing to enforce the regulations governing the contents of those plans. We affirm.

We review jurisdictional questions, including standing, de novo. Bruce v. United States, 759 F.2d 755, 758 (9th Cir. 1985). For the purposes of determining whether the union has standing, we accept as true all material allegations of the complaint and construe the complaint in favor of the union. See Gladstone, Realtors v. Village of Bellwood, 441 U.S. 91, 109 (1978). We may affirm the district court's correct legal conclusions even if the district court reached those conclusions for the wrong reasons. Bruce, 759 F.2d at 758.

The district court had jurisdiction to hear the case under 43 U.S.C. § 1349(b) and 28 U.S.C. § 1331. We have jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C. § 1291.

To assert standing, a plaintiff must satisfy both constitutional and prudential requirements. Allen v. Wright, 468 U.S. 737, 750-51 (1984); Valley Forge Christian College v. Americans United for Separation of Church and State, Inc., 454 U.S. 464, 471-76 (1982); Dan Caputo Co. v. Russian River County Sanitation District, 749 F.2d 571, 574 (9th Cir. 1984). The constitutional component of standing requires the union to have suffered actual or threatened injury traceable to the alleged unlawful conduct and likely to be redressed by the requested relief. See Valley Forge, 454 U.S. at 471-72; Fernandez v. Brock, 840 F.2d 622, 625 (9th Cir. 1987). The prudential component of standing includes the requirement that the claims fall within the zone of interests to be protected by the statute. Valley Forge, 454 U.S. at 474-75. Although the zone of interests test is not meant to be demanding, standing is denied if the plaintiff's interest is related only marginally to the statute. Clarke v. Securities Industry Association, 479 U.S. 388, 399 (1987).

We do not determine whether the union satisfies the traceability and redressability prongs of the constitutional component of standing, because the alleged injury is outside the zone of interests of the OCS Lands Act. The OCS Lands Act is devoted to providing environmental protection while enabling oil and gas development. See 43 U.S.C. § 1332(3). The Act encompasses certain economic as well as environmental interests. See Watt v. Energy Action Education Foundation, 454 U.S. 151, 162 (1981) (discussing 43 U.S.C. § 1344(a) (4)--goal of obtaining fair market value for OCS resources). The union's interest in local employment opportunities has no connection to either the economic or environmental purposes of the Act.

The union points to no authority equating local employment opportunities with "the human environment," the phrase in the OCS Lands Act it asserts encompasses its interests. See 43 U.S.C. § 1351(h) (1) ("The Secretary shall require modification of a plan if he determines that the lessee has failed to make adequate provision in such plan for safe operations on the lease area or for protection of the human, marine, or coastal environment...."). Although the Act recognizes the impacts of OCS development on local areas, the references to those impacts do not address local employment opportunities. See 43 U.S.C. § 1332(4) and (5). No requirement or policy favoring local, as opposed to domestic, labor is stated in the Act. Cf. 43 U.S.C. § 1356(c) (generally requiring OCS vessels and structures to employ U.S. citizens); 43 U.S.C. § 1332(6) (OCS operations should be conducted by well-trained personnel); 43 U.S.C. § 1333(c) (NLRA applicable). Local employment opportunities are, at best, only marginally related to the Act's concern for the "human environment" or the impacts of OCS development on local areas. Using the generous standard required, the union's interest in promoting local employment opportunities is not within the zone of interests of the OCS Lands Act. Cf. Dan Caputo, 749 F.2d at 575 (citizen suit provisions of Clean Water Act do not encompass contractor's interest in grant funds); Fors v. Lehman, 741 F.2d 1130, 1133-34 (9th Cir. 1984) (nondependents outside zone of interests of Missing Persons Act); Port of Astoria v. Hodel, 595 F.2d 467, 475-76 (9th Cir. 1979) (pecuniary losses and frustrated financial expectations not coupled with environmental interest outside NEPA's zone of interests; economic injury that is directly connected to major environmental impact within zone of interests). The district court properly dismissed the complaint for failure to establish standing.



This disposition is not appropriate for publication and may not be cited to or by the courts of this circuit except as provided by 9th Cir.R. 36-3