Envtl. Processing Sys., LC v. FPL Farming Ltd. (Opinion)Annotate this Case
A landowner sued its neighbor, the operator of an adjacent wastewater disposal facility, alleging that wastewater had migrated into the deep subsurface of its land, possibility contaminating the groundwater beneath it. The jury returned a verdict in favor of the wastewater disposal facility. After a series of appeals, the court of appeals reversed the jury’s verdict. The Supreme Court reversed the judgment of the court of appeals and reinstated the trial court’s judgment that the wastewater disposal facility take nothing, holding (1) the jury instruction properly included lack of consent as an element of a trespass cause of action that a plaintiff must prove; (2) the trial court properly denied the landowner’s motion for directed verdict on the issue of consent; and (3) there is no need to address the remaining question of whether deep subsurface wastewater migration is actionable as a common law trespass in Texas.