Logourl black
From our private database of 13,800+ case briefs...

Tennessee Valley Authority v. Hill

United States Supreme Court
437 U.S. 153 (1978)


Facts

Hill and other Tennessee residents (plaintiffs) filed suit in federal district court against the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) (defendant), a wholly-owned public corporation of the United States, seeking to enjoin construction of a nearly-completed dam and reservoir on the Little Tennessee River. Plaintiffs alleged the project failed to conform to the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The district court granted plaintiffs’ request and halted the project pending the filing of an Environmental Impact Statement. Several months later, a University of Tennessee scientist discovered a previously-unknown species of perch, called the snail darter, living in the waters affected by the project. Pursuant to the Endangered Species Act (ESA), the Secretary of the Interior found that once the dam and reservoir were operational, it would result in the “total destruction of the snail darter’s habitat.” The Secretary listed the snail darter on the endangered species list and declared that, under § 7 of the ESA, all federal agencies were required to protect the snail darter’s critical habitat area. Plaintiffs then filed suit against the TVA to enjoin the final completion of the dam and reservoir on the ground that it could result in the extinction of the snail darter. The district court denied plaintiffs’ request for injunction and dismissed the complaint. Plaintiffs appealed. The court of appeals reversed and remanded the case with instructions that a permanent injunction be issued. The U.S. Supreme Court granted certiorari to review.

Rule of Law

The rule of law is the black letter law upon which the court rested its decision. To access this section, start your 7-day free trial of Quimbee for Law Students.

Issue

The issue section includes the dispositive legal issue in the case phrased as a question. To access this section, start your 7-day free trial of Quimbee for Law Students.

Holding and Reasoning (Burger, C.J.)

The holding and reasoning section includes:

  • A “yes” or “no” answer to the question framed in the issue section;
  • A summary of the majority or plurality opinion, using the CREAC method; and
  • The procedural disposition (e.g. reversed and remanded, affirmed, etc.).

To access this section, start your 7-day free trial of Quimbee for Law Students.

What to do next…

  1. Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.

    You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.

  2. Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.

    Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.

Here's why 171,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:

  • Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 13,800 briefs, keyed to 187 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
  • The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
  • Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
  • Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.