William & Mary Environmental Law and Policy Review


Thummim Park


This Note calls for the Virginia Supreme Court to recognize that a city’s right to freely pollute the public waterways is no longer valid under the Virginia Constitution, and to recognize that the line of Darling cases granting municipalities the public right to pollute waterways should have been overturned.

Part I will set out the foundation for this Note. It will discuss the background of Johnson v. City of Suffolk, laying the context for this Note’s discussion. Part II will engage in an analysis of the rationale for Darling. It will contextualize and compare it to current understandings of the relevant doctrines. Part III will then assess how courts applied the Darling right in cases in light of changed environmental regulations and statutes. Lastly, Part IV will analyze Johnson, and discuss how the Darling right should have been applied, as opposed to how it was in fact applied.

This abstract has been taken from the author's introduction.