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Center for Biological Diversity v. US Dept. of Agr., No. 09-17233

By FindLaw Staff on December 02, 2010 12:59 PM

FOIA Order Compelling Disclosure By USDA Reversed

In Center for Biological Diversity v. US Dept. of Agr., No. 09-17233, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) appeal from the district court's order requiring the USDA, under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), to disclose the GPS coordinates of wolf depredations to which it had responded, the court reversed where FOIA Exemption 3 applied because Section 8791 of the Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008 exempted from disclosure such geospatial data and applied to this case even though it took effect after the USDA withheld the coordinates.

 

As the court wrote:  "The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) appeals the district court's grant of summary judgment in favor of the Center for Biological Diversity, which required the USDA, under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA), to disclose the GPS coordinates of wolf depredations to which it had responded. The district court held that the coordinates were not exempt from disclosure under FOIA Exemption 3 or Exemption 6."

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