In these cases, involving alleged damage to fishing grounds caused by discharges and ocean dumping of sewage and other waste, we are faced with questions concerning the availability of a damages remedy, based either on federal common law or on the provisions of two Acts—the Federal Water Pollution Control Act (FWPCA), 86 Stat. 816, as amended, 33 U. S. C. § 1251 et seq. (1976 ed. and Supp. III), and the Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act of 1972 (MPRSA), 86 Stat. 1052, as amended, 33 U. S. C. § 1401 et seq. (1976 ed. and Supp. III).
Respondents are an organization whose members harvest fish and shellfish off the coast of New York and New Jersey, and one individual member of that organization. In 1977, they brought suit in the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey against petitioners—various governmental entities and officials from New York,
Invoking a wide variety of legal theories,
The United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit reversed as to the claims based on the FWPCA. the MPRSA. the federal common law of nuisance, and maritime tort. National
The court then applied this same analysis to the MPRSA, concluding again that the District Court had erred in dismissing respondents' claims under this Act. Although the court was not explicit on this question, it apparently concluded that suits for damages, as well as for injunctive relief, could be brought under the FWPCA and the MPRSA.
Petitions for a writ of certiorari raising a variety of arguments were filed in this Court by a group of New Jersey sewerage authorities (No. 79-1711), by the Joint Meeting of Essex and Union Counties in New Jersey (No. 79-1754), by the City and Mayor of New York (No. 79-1760), and by all of the federal defendants named in this suit (No. 80-12).
The Federal Water Pollution Control Act was first enacted in 1948. Act of June 30, 1948, 62 Stat. 1155. It emphasized state enforcement of water quality standards. When this legislation proved ineffective, Congress passed the Federal Water Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972, Pub. L. 92-500, 86 Stat. 816, 33 U. S. C. § 1251 et seq. The Amendments shifted the emphasis to "direct restrictions on discharges," EPA v. California ex rel. State Water Resources Control Board, 426 U.S. 200, 204 (1976), and made it "unlawful for any person to discharge a pollutant without obtaining a permit and complying with its terms," id., at 205.
The Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act of
The exact nature of respondents' claims under these two Acts is not clear, but the claims appear to fall into two categories. The main contention is that the EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers have permitted the New Jersey and New York defendants to discharge and dump pollutants in amounts that are not permitted by the Acts. In addition, they seem to allege that the New York and New Jersey defendants have violated the terms of their permits. The question before us is whether respondents may raise either of these claims in a private suit for injunctive and monetary relief, where such a suit is not expressly authorized by either of these Acts.
It is unnecessary to discuss at length the principles set out in recent decisions concerning the recurring question whether Congress intended to create a private right of action under a federal statute without saying so explicitly.
These Acts contain unusually elaborate enforcement provisions, conferring authority to sue for this purpose both on government officials and private citizens. The FWPCA, for example, authorizes the EPA Administrator to respond to violations of the Act with compliance orders and civil suits. § 309, 33 U. S. C. § 1319.
These enforcement mechanisms, most of which have their counterpart under the MPRSA,
In view of these elaborate enforcement provisions it cannot be assumed that Congress intended to authorize by implication additional judicial remedies for private citizens suing under MPRSA and FWPCA. As we stated in Transamerica Mortgage Advisors, supra, "it is an elemental canon of statutory construction that where a statute expressly provides a particular remedy or remedies, a court must be chary
As noted above, the Court of Appeals avoided this inference. Discussing the FWPCA, it held that the existence of a citizen-suit provision in § 505 (a) does not rule out implied forms of private enforcement of the Act. It arrived at this conclusion by asserting that Congress intended in § 505 (a) to create a limited cause of action for "private attorneys general"—"non-injured member[s] of the public" suing to promote the general welfare rather than to redress an injury to their own welfare. 616 F. 2d, at 1227. It went on to conclude:
There are at least three problems with this reasoning. First, the language of the saving clause on which the Court of Appeals relied, see n. 10, supra, is quite ambiguous concerning the intent of Congress to "preserve" remedies under the FWPCA itself. It merely states that nothing in the citizen-suit provision "shall restrict any right which any person. . . may have under any statute or common law to seek enforcement of any effluent standard or limitation or to seek any other relief." It is doubtful that the phrase "any statute"
Moreover, the reasoning on which the Court of Appeals relied is flawed for another reason. It draws a distinction between "non-injured" plaintiffs who may bring citizen suits to enforce provisions of these Acts, and the "injured" plaintiffs in this litigation who claim a right to sue under the Acts, not by virtue of the citizen-suit provisions, but rather under the language of the saving clauses. In fact, it is clear that the citizen-suit provisions apply only to persons who can claim some sort of injury and there is, therefore, no reason to infer the existence of a separate right of action for "injured" plaintiffs. "Citizen" is defined in the citizen-suit section of the FWPCA as "a person or persons having an interest which is or may be adversely affected." § 505 (g), 33 U. S. C. § 1365 (g). It is clear from the Senate Conference Report that this phrase was intended by Congress to allow suits by all persons possessing standing under this Court's decision in Sierra Club v. Morton, 405 U.S. 727 (1972). See S. Conf. Rep. No. 92-1236, p. 146 (1972). This broad category
Finally, the Court of Appeals failed to take account of the rest of the enforcement scheme expressly provided by Congress— including the opportunity for "any interested person" to seek judicial review of a number of EPA actions within 90 days, § 509 (b), 33 U. S. C. § 1369 (b). See supra, at 13-14.
The Court of Appeals also applied its reasoning to the MPRSA. But here again we are persuaded that Congress evidenced no intent to authorize by implication private remedies under these Acts apart from the expressly authorized citizen suits. The relevant provisions in the MPRSA are in many respects almost identical to those of the FWPCA. 33 U. S. C. § 1415 (g). Although they do not expressly limit citizen suits to those who have suffered some injury from a violation of the Act, we are not persuaded by this fact alone that Congress affirmatively intended to imply the existence of a parallel private remedy, after setting out expressly the manner in which private citizens can seek to enjoin violations.
In Cort v. Ash, 422 U.S. 66, 78 (1975), the Court identified several factors that are relevant to the question of implied private remedies. These include the legislative history. See ibid. ("Second, is there any indication of legislative intent, explicit or implicit, either to create such a remedy or to deny one?"). This history does not lead to a contrary conclusion with respect to implied remedies under either Act. Indeed, the Report and debates provide affirmative support for the view that Congress intended the limitations imposed on citizen suits to apply to all private suits under these Acts.
Although the parties have not suggested it, there remains a possible alternative source of express congressional authorization of private suits under these Acts. "Last Term, in Maine v. Thiboutot, 448 U.S. 1 (1980), the Court construed 42 U. S. C. § 1983 as authorizing suits to redress violations by state officials of rights created by federal statutes. Accordingly, it could be argued that respondents may sue the municipalities and sewerage boards among the petitioners
It is appropriate to reach the question of the applicability of Maine v. Thiboutot to this setting, despite the failure of respondents to raise it here or below. This litigation began long before that decision. Moreover, if controlling, this argument would obviate the need to consider whether Congress intended to authorize private suits to enforce these particular federal statutes. The claim brought here arguably falls within the scope of Maine v. Thiboutot because it involves a suit by a private party claiming that a federal statute has been violated under color of state law, causing an injury. The Court, however, has recognized two exceptions to the application of § 1983 to statutory violations. In Pennhurst State School and Hospital v. Halderman, 451 U.S. 1 (1981), we remanded certain claims for a determination (i) whether Congress had foreclosed private enforcement of that statute in the enactment itself, and (ii) whether the statute at issue there was the kind that created enforceable "rights" under § 1983. Id., at 28. In the present cases, because we find that Congress foreclosed a § 1983 remedy under these Acts, we need not reach the second question whether these Acts created "rights, privileges, or immunities" within the meaning of § 1983.
The remaining two issues on which we granted certiorari relate to respondents' federal claims based on the federal common law of nuisance. The principal precedent on which these claims were based is Illinois v. Milwaukee, 406 U.S. 91 (1972), where the Court found that the federal courts have jurisdiction to consider the federal common-law issues raised by a suit for injunctive relief by the State of Illinois against various Wisconsin municipalities and public sewerage commissions, involving the discharge of sewage into Lake Michigan. In these cases, we need not decide whether a cause of action may be brought under federal common law by a private plaintiff, seeking damages. The Court has now held
This decision disposes entirely of respondents' federal common-law claims, since there is no reason to suppose that the pre-emptive effect of the FWPCA is any less when pollution of coastal waters is at issue. To the extent that this litigation involves ocean waters not covered by the FWPCA, and regulated under the MPRSA, we see no cause for different treatment of the pre-emption question. The regulatory scheme of the MPRSA is no less comprehensive, with respect to ocean dumping, than are analogous provisions of the FWPCA.
We therefore must dismiss the federal common-law claims because their underlying legal basis is now pre-empted by statute. As discussed above, we also dismiss the claims under the MPRSA and the FWPCA because respondents lack a right of action under those statutes. We vacate the judgment below with respect to these two claims, and remand for further proceedings.
It is so ordered.
JUSTICE STEVENS, with whom JUSTICE BLACKMUN joins, concurring in the judgment in part and dissenting in part.
When should a person injured by a violation of federal law be allowed to recover his damages in a federal court? This seemingly simple question has recently presented the Court with more difficulty than most substantive questions that
In recent years, however, a Court that is properly concerned about the burdens imposed upon the federal judiciary, the
Although I agree with the Court's disposition of the implied-private-right-of-action question in these cases, I write separately to emphasize that the Court's current approach to the judicial task of fashioning appropriate remedies for violations of federal statutes is out of step with the Court's own
In the present context of these cases, we of course know nothing about the ultimate merits of the claims asserted by respondents. As the cases come to us, however, we must make certain assumptions in analyzing the questions presented. First, we must assume that the complaint speaks the truth when it alleges that the petitioners have dumped large quantities of sewage and toxic waste in the Atlantic Ocean and its tributaries, and that these dumping operations have violated the substantive provisions of the Clean Water Act and the MPRSA. See Northwest Airlines, Inc. v. Transport Workers, 451 U.S. 77, 80, n. 3. Second, we must also assume that these illegal operations have caused an injury to respondents' commercial interests. Third, because some of the petitioners are "persons" who allegedly acted under color of state law, as the Court recognizes, see ante, at 19, and n. 29, we must assume that 42 U. S. C. § 1983 (1976 ed., Supp. III)
The Court's holding that Congress decided in the Clean Water Act and the MPRSA to withdraw the express remedy provided by 42 U. S. C. § 1983 (1976 ed., Supp. III) seems to rest on nothing more than the fact that these statutes provide other express remedies and do not mention § 1983. Because the enforcement mechanisms provided in the statutes are "quite comprehensive," the Court finds it "hard to believe that Congress intended to preserve the § 1983 right of action . . . ." Ante, at 20. There are at least two flaws in this reasoning. First, the question is not whether Congress "intended to preserve the § 1983 right of action," but rather whether Congress intended to withdraw that right of action.
I agree with the Court that the remedial provisions of the Clean Water Act and the MPRSA are "quite comprehensive." I cannot agree, however, with the Court's implicit conclusion that this determination ends the inquiry under Marine v. Thiboutot, supra. The question that must be answered in determining whether respondents may pursue their claims under § 1983 is whether Congress intended that the remedies provided in the substantive statutes be exclusive. See Pennhurst State School and Hospital v. Halderman, 451 U.S. 1, 28. Because Congress did not expressly address this question in the statutes, the Court looks elsewhere for an answer and finds it in the comprehensive character of the express statutory remedies. I have no quarrel as a general matter with the proposition that a comprehensive remedial scheme can evidence a congressional decision to preclude other remedies. Cf. Northwest Airlines, Inc., supra, at 93-94. However, we must not lose sight of the fact that our evaluation of a statute's express remedies is merely a tool used to discern congressional intent; it is not an end in itself. No matter how comprehensive we may consider a statute's remedial scheme to be, Congress is at liberty to leave other remedial avenues open. Express statutory language or clear references in the legislative history will rebut whatever presumption of exclusivity arises from comprehensive remedial provisions. In my judgment, in these cases we are presented with both express statutory language and clear references in the legislative history indicating that Congress did not intend the
Despite their comprehensive enforcement mechanisms, both statutes expressly preserve all legal remedies otherwise available. The statutes state in so many words that the authorization of an express remedy in the statute itself shall not give rise to an inference that Congress intended to foreclose other remedies. Thus, § 505 (e) of the Clean Water Act states:
And, § 105 (g) (5) of the MPRSA states:
Respondents' right to proceed under § 1983 in light of these statutory provisions could have been made more plain only had Congress substituted the citation "42 U. S. C. § 1983" for the words "any statute" in the saving clauses.
The legislative history of both statutes makes it clear that the saving clauses were intended to mean what they say. The Senate Report on the Clean Water Act states:
See also H. R. Rep. No. 92-911, p. 134 (1972). And the corresponding Report on the MPRSA similarly states that the authorization of citizen suits shall not restrict or supersede "any other right to legal action which is afforded the potential litigant in any other statute or the common law." S. Rep. No. 92-451, pp. 23-24 (1971). See also H. R. Rep. No. 92-361, p. 23 (1971).
The words "any other law" in the former Report and "any other statute" in the latter surely encompass 42 U. S. C. § 1983 (1976 ed., Supp. III), as do the words "any statute" in the saving clauses themselves. It therefore seems little short of remarkable that unambiguous expressions of legislative intent such as these can be read to express a purpose to withdraw the express statutory remedy provided by § 1983.
The Court, of course, discusses the saving clauses and this legislative history elsewhere in its opinion. See ante, at 15-17, and n. 26. In rejecting the Court of Appeals' conclusion, based in part on the saving clauses, that respondents may invoke implied rights of action under the Clean Water Act and the MPRSA, the Court finds it "doubtful" that the phrase "any statute" in the saving clauses refers to the very statutes in which the clauses appear. See ante, at 15-16. The Court's doubt is reinforced by use of the word "other" in the passages from the Senate Reports quoted above. See ante, at 16, n. 26. Thus, the Court holds that the statutory phrase "any statute" does not refer to the Clean Water Act or the MPRSA; the Court apparently also holds that it does not refer to § 1983, even though that statute clearly qualifies as "any other statute" or "any other law," within the meaning of the legislative history.
The effect of the Court's holding in Milwaukee v. Illinois, 451 U.S. 304, was to make the city of Milwaukee's compliance with the requirements of the Clean Water Act a complete defense to a federal common-law nuisance action for pollution damage. It was, and still is, difficult for me to reconcile that holding with the excerpts from the statutes and the Senate Reports quoted above—particularly the statement:
Today, the Court pursues the pre-emption rationale of Milwaukee v. Illinois to its inexorable conclusion and holds that even noncompliance with the requirements of the Clean Water Act and the MPRSA is a defense to a federal common-law nuisance claim.
Although I agree with the Court's holding that neither of these statutes implicitly authorizes a private damages remedy. I reach that conclusion by a different route. Under the traditional common-law analysis discussed supra, at 23-24, the primary question is whether the statute was enacted for the special benefit of a particular class of which the plaintiff is a member. See Texas & Pacific R. Co. v. Rigsby, 241 U. S., at 39-40. As we have held in the past, "[t]hat question is
The language of neither the Clean Water Act nor the MPRSA defines any such special class. Both the substantive provisions of these statutes and the breadth of their authorizations of citizen suits indicate that they were "enacted for the protection of the general public." Cannon, supra, at 690.
The conclusion required by the statutory language is fortified by the legislative history on which the Court relies. I agree that the legislative deliberations about civil remedies under the Clean Air Act, see ante, at 17-18, n. 27, illuminate the meaning of the Clean Water Act and the MPRSA—since these statutes were enacted only a short time later and had similar environmental objectives— and that those deliberations reveal a conscious congressional choice not to authorize a new statutory damages remedy. Accordingly, I agree with the conclusion reached by the Court in Part II-A of its opinion, but I respectfully dissent from the remainder of its judgment.
"(a) Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, any citizen may commence a civil action on his own behalf—
"(1) against any person (including (i) the United States, and (ii) any other governmental instrumentality or agency to the extent permitted by the eleventh amendment to the Constitution) who is alleged to be in violation of (A) an effluent standard or limitation under this chapter or (B) an order issued by the Administrator or a State with respect to such a standard or limitation, or
"(2) against the Administrator where there is alleged a failure of the Administrator to perform any act or duty under this chapter which is not discretionary with the Administrator.
"The district courts shall have jurisdiction, without regard to the amount in controversy or the citizenship of the parties, to enforce such an effluent standard or limitation, or such an order, or to order the Administrator to perform such act or duty, as the case may be, and to apply any appropriate civil penalties under section 1319 (d) of this title.
"(b) No action may be commenced—
"(1) under subsection (a) (1) of this section—
"(A) prior to sixty days after the plaintiff has given notice of the alleged violation (i) to the Administrator, (ii) to the State in which the alleged violation occurs, and (iii) to any alleged violator of the standard, limitation, or order, or
"(B) if the Administrator or State has commenced and is diligently prosecuting a civil or criminal action in a court of the United States, or a State to require compliance with the standard, limitation, or order, but in any such action in a court of the United States any citizen may intervene as a matter of right.
"(2) under subsection (a) (2) of this section prior to sixty days after the plaintiff has given notice of such action to the Administrator,
except that such action may be brought immediately after such notification in the case of an action under this section respecting a violation of sections 1316 and 1317 (a) of this title. Notice under this subsection shall be given in such manner as the Administrator shall prescribe by regulation."
The Administrator may intervene in any citizen suit. § 505 (c) (2), 33 U. S. C. § 1365 (c) (2).
See n. 27, infra (legislative history emphasizing the limited forms of relief available under the Act).
In this opinion we refer to sections of the original FWPCA, added in the 1972 Amendments, with parallel citations to the United States Code.
"Nothing in this section shall restrict any right which any person (or class of persons) may have under any statute or common law to seek enforcement of any effluent standard or limitation or to seek any other relief (including relief against the Administrator or a State agency)." 33 U. S. C. § 1365 (e).
"(g) (1) Except as provided in paragraph (2) of this subsection any person may commence a civil suit on his own behalf to enjoin any person, including the United States and any other governmental instrumentality or agency (to the extent permitted by the eleventh amendment to the Constitution), who is alleged to be in violation of any prohibition, limitation, criterion, or permit established or issued by or under this subchapter. The district courts shall have jurisdiction, without regard to the amount in controversy or the citizenship of the parties, to enforce such prohibition, limitation, criterion, or permit, as the case may be.
"(2) No action may be commenced—
"(A) prior to sixty days after notice of the violation has been given to the Administrator or to the Secretary, and to any alleged violator of the prohibition, limitation, criterion, or permit: or
"(B) if the Attorney General has commenced and is diligently prosecuting a civil action in a court of the United States to require compliance with the prohibition, limitation, criterion, or permit: or
"(C) if the Administrator has commenced action to impose a penalty pursuant to subsection (a) of this section, or if the Administrator, or the Secretary, has initiated permit revocation or suspension proceedings under subsection (f) of this section: or
"(D) if the United States has commenced and is diligently prosecuting a criminal action in a court of the United States or a State to redress a violation of this subchapter." 33 U. S. C. §§ 1415 (g) (1), (2).
The United States may intervene in any citizen suit brought under the Act. 33 U. S. C. § 1415 (g) (3) (B).
Like the FWPCA, the MPRSA contains a "saving clause," which states:
"The injunctive relief provided by this subsection shall not restrict any right which any person (or class of persons) may have under any statute or common law to seek enforcement of any standard or limitation or to seek any other relief (including relief against the Administrator, the Secretary, or a State agency)." § 1415 (g) (5).
The Petitions for certiorari in this Court raised questions concerning the applicability of state Tort Claims Acts and the Eleventh Amendment to tort suits in federal court. These questions are not, however, within the scope of the questions on which review was granted.
"Having so held, we reject the federal government defendants' sovereign immunity argument. The 1976 amendments to section 1331 of title 28 make clear that sovereign immunity has been waived in all suits by plaintiffs seeking injunctive relief against federal agencies or officers. Whether damages can be recovered from the federal government is a separate question to which the Federal Tort Claims Act speaks." 616 F. 2d, at 1231 (footnote omitted).
This passage suggests that, as a general matter, the court had concluded that the statutory rights of action it was recognizing included damages relief. An additional indication is the fact that, by the time of the Court of Appeals decision, any relief other than damages could not have been too important to respondents. The algal bloom about which respondents complain died in 1976. The Court of Appeals decision was not handed down until 1980. Under the MPRSA, 33 U. S. C. § 1412a (a) (1976 ed., Supp. III), the EPA is required to end all ocean dumping of sewage sludge by December 31, 1981.
"It should be noted, however, that the section would specifically preserve any rights or remedies under any other law. Thus, if damages could be shown, other remedies would remain available. Compliance with requirements under this Act would not be a defense to a common law action for pollution damages." S. Rep. No. 92-414, p. 81 (1971) (emphasis added).
See also S. Rep. No. 92-451, pp. 23-24 (1971) (Report on the MPRSA) (the citizen-suit provision does not restrict or supersede "any other right to legal action which is afforded the potential litigant in any other statute or the common law").
It might be argued that the phrase "any effluent standard or limitation" in § 505 (e) necessarily is a reference to the terms of the FWPCA. We, however, are unpersuaded that Congress necessarily intended this meaning. The phrase also could refer to state statutory limitations, or to "effluent limitations" imposed as a result of court decrees under the common law of nuisance.
"It has been argued, however, that conferring additional rights on the citizen may burden the courts unduly. I would argue that the citizen suit provision of S. 4358 has been carefully drafted to prevent this consequence from arising. First of all, it should be noted that the bill makes no provision for damages to the individual. It therefore provides no incentives to suit other than to protect the health and welfare of those suing and others similarly situated. It will be the rare, rather than the ordinary, person, I suspect, who, with no hope of financial gain and the very real prospect of financial loss, will initiate court action under this bill." 116 Cong. Rec. 33104 (1970).
Similarly, during the debates on the Clean Air Act, Senator Muskie, in response to concerns expressed by other Senators, contrasted the citizen-suit provision with the terms of S. 3201, a consumer protection bill that would have authorized private suits for damages:
"Senate bill 3201 provides damages and a remedy for recovery of fines and restitution, and other monetary damages. The pending bill is limited to seek [sic] abatement of violation of standards established administratively under the act, and expressly excludes damage actions." Id., at 33102.
He placed in the Record a staff memorandum stating that the availability of damages "would encourage frivolous or harassing suits against industries and government agencies." Id., at 33103. See also City of Highland Park v. Train, 519 F.2d 681, 690-691 (CA7 1975), cert. denied, 424 U.S. 927 (1976).
Even if this were not the correct interpretation of the saving clauses, we recently held that the saving clause in the FWPCA relates only to the effect of the accompanying citizen-suit provision. Milwaukee v. Illinois, 451 U.S. 304, 329 (1981) (the section "means only that the provision of [a citizen] suit does not revoke other remedies"). The parallel provision of the MPRSA is equally limited. 33 U. S. C. § 1415 (g) (5) ("The injunctive relief provided by this subsection shall not restrict any right which any person . . . may have under any statute or common law") (emphasis added). We therefore are not persuaded that the saving clauses limit the effect of the overall remedial schemes provided expressly in the Acts. In sum, we think it clear that those express remedies preclude suits for damages under § 1983, and that the saving clauses do not require a contrary conclusion.
In so holding, we also note that, contrary to JUSTICE STEVENS' argument, post, at 27-28, n. 11, we do not suggest that the burden is on a plaintiff to demonstrate congressional intent to preserve § 1983 remedies.
"A disregard of the command of the statute is a wrongful act, and where it results in damage to one of the class for whose especial benefit the statute was enacted, the right to recover the damages from the party in default is implied, according to a doctrine of the common law . . . . This is but an application of the maxim, Ubi jus ibi remedium." 241 U. S., at 39-40.
As the Rigsby Court noted, the presumption was firmly established at common law, see California v. Sierra Club, supra, at 299-300 (STEVENS, J., concurring), and it had been recognized on numerous prior occasions by this Court. See, e. g., Marbury v. Madison, 1 Cranch 137, 163 ("[I]t is a general and indisputable rule, that where there is a legal right, there is also a legal remedy by suit, or action at law, whenever that right is invaded'"); Kendall v. United States, 12 Pet. 524, 623 ("[T]he power to enforce the performance of the act must rest somewhere, or it will present a case which has often been said to involve a monstrous absurdity in a well organized government, that there should be no remedy, although a clear and undeniable right should be shown to exist"); Pollard v. Bailey, 20 Wall. 520, 527 ("A general liability created by statute without a remedy may be enforced by an appropriate common-law action"); Hayes v. Michigan Central R. Co., 111 U.S. 228, 240 ("[E]ach person specially injured by the breach of the obligation is entitled to his individual compensation, and to an action for its recovery"); De Lima v. Bidwell, 182 U.S. 1, 176-177 ("If there be an admitted wrong, the courts will look far to supply an adequate remedy").
"In determining whether a private remedy is implicit in a statute not expressly providing one, several factors are relevant. First, is the plaintiff `one of the class for whose especial benefit the statute was enacted,'— that is, does the statute create a federal right in favor of the plaintiff? Second, is there any indication of legislative intent, explicit or implicit, either to create such a remedy or to deny one? Third, is it consistent with the underlying purposes of the legislative scheme to imply such a remedy for the plaintiff? And finally, is the cause of action one traditionally relegated to state law, in an area basically the concern of the States, so that it would be inappropriate to infer a cause of action based solely on federal law?" 422 U. S., at 78 (citations omitted) (emphasis in original).
"Every person who, under color of any statute, ordinance, regulation, custom, or usage, of any State or Territory, or the District of Columbia, subjects, or causes to be subjected, any citizen of the United States or other person within the jurisdiction thereof to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured by the Constitution and laws, shall be liable to the party injured in an action at law, suit in equity, or other proper proceeding for redress."
"The question before us is whether the phrase `and laws,' as used in § 1983, means what it says, or whether it should be limited to some subset of laws. Given that Congress attached no modifiers to the phrase, the plain language of the statute undoubtedly embraces respondents' claim that petitioners violated the Social Security Act." Maine v. Thiboutot, 448 U. S., at 4.
"The plain language of the savings clause of the Clean Water Act, 33 U. S. C. 1365 (e), indicates Congress' intent to preserve all common law remedies, and the legislative history makes clear that Congress understood that the federal common law would be preserved as well." Brief for Federal Petitioners 37.
In support of this conclusion, the Solicitor General cites a statement in the legislative history by Congressman Dingell, one of the cosponsors of the Clean Water Act in the House, specifically referring to nuisance litigation under the federal common law. See 118 Cong. Rec. 33757 (1972), 1 Legislative History of the Water Pollution Control Act Amendments of 1972 (Committee Print compiled for the Senate Committee on Public Works by the Library of Congress), Ser. 93-1, p. 252 (1973). In his statement, Congressman Dingell cited H. R. Rep. No. 92-1401, pp. 31-33 (1972), which quoted with approval from Illinois v. Milwaukee, 406 U.S. 91, and discussed two federal common-law nuisance actions then being pursued by the Department of Justice against alleged polluters. See also Milwaukee v. Illinois, 451 U. S., at 343-344 (BLACKMUN, J., dissenting).
"The objective of this chapter is to restore and maintain the chemical, physical, and biological integrity of the Nation's waters."
Section 2 (b) of the MPRSA provides:
"The Congress declares that it is the policy of the United States to regulate the dumping of all types of materials into ocean waters and to prevent or strictly limit the dumping into ocean waters of any material which would adversely affect human health, welfare, or amenities, or the marine environment, ecological systems, or economic potentialities." 33 U. S. C. § 1401 (b).