The Environmental Defense Section defends civil cases, matters and proceedings arising under the following statutes (all of which are concerned with the regulation and abatement of sources of pollution or with the protection of the natural environment):
- Sections 10 and 13 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899, 33 U.S.C. §§ 403, 407;
- The Clean Water Act (Federal Water Pollution Control Act, as amended), 33 U.S.C. § 1251 et seq. (except for in rem actions against vessels);
- The Toxic Substances Control Act of 1976, 15 U.S.C. § 2601 et seq.;
- The Safe Drinking Water Act of 1974, 42 U.S.C. § 300f et seq.;
- The Clean Air Act, 42 U.S.C. § 7401 et seq.;
- The Noise Control Act of 1972, 42 U.S.C. § 4901 et seq.;
- The Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act, 42 U.S.C. § 7133 et seq.;
- The Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act, 7 U.S.C. § 136 et seq.;
- The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, 42 U.S.C. § 6901 et seq. (also called the "Solid Waste Disposal Act").
- The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, 42 U.S.C. § 9601 et seq.;
- Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act, 33 U.S.C. § 1401 et seq. ("Ocean Dumping Act").
The Environmental Defense Section also prosecutes, and supports the prosecution of, civil matters arising under Sections 10 and 13 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 and Sections 301 and 404 of the Clean Water Act.