Paul Weiland

Paul Weiland

Nossaman LLP

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Fifth Circuit Rejects Strict Liability Standard and Reverses Trial Court Decision Imposing Endangered Species Act Section 9...

In The Aransas Project v. Shaw, the Fifth Circuit reversed a lower court’s finding that the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality violated section 9 of the Endangered Species Act through its combined actions and inactions...more

7/2/2014 - Endangered Species Act Environmental Policies Liability Section 9 Water Water Diversion

Supreme Court Strikes Part of EPA Rule Regulating Greenhouse Gases, Affirms Balance of Rule

In a 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court held that EPA acted unlawfully when it sought to impose a permit requirement on stationary sources solely on the basis of greenhouse gas emissions from those sources under programs...more

6/24/2014 - Carbon Emissions Clean Air Act EPA Greenhouse Gas Emissions Power Plants SCOTUS Utility Air Regulatory Group v EPA

California Fish and Game Commission Votes to List the Gray Wolf as Endangered

In a split decision and contrary to the recommendation of the Department of Fish and Wildlife (Department), the California Fish and Game Commission (Commission) voted to list the gray wolf (Canis lupis) as endangered....more

6/10/2014 - Endangered Species Act ESA Listings Fish and Wildlife Service

Broad Duty To Consult Is New Norm Under ESA In 9th Circ.

Recently, the Ninth Circuit sitting en banc issued a landmark decision regarding the consultation provisions of the Endangered Species Act. The consultation provisions require any federal agency that authorizes, funds or...more

5/14/2014 - Bureau of Reclamation Consultation Contract Renewal Delta Mendota Canal Delta Smelt ESA ESA Listings Fish and Wildlife Service National Association of Home Builders Settlement Water Rights

U.S. Fish And Wildlife Service Lists Three California Amphibians

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) published a final rule in the Federal Register listing the Sierra Nevada yellow-legged frog (Rana Sierrae) and the northern distinct population segment (DPS) of the mountain...more

4/29/2014 - Endangered Species Act ESA Listings Fish and Wildlife Service

En Banc Ninth Circuit Holds ESA Consultation Requirement Applies to Renewal of Long-Term Water Contracts

In a unanimous decision, eleven active judges on the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held that the duty to consult under section 7(a)(2) of the Endangered Species Act (ESA) when a federal agency action...more

4/21/2014 - Bureau of Reclamation Consultation Delta Mendota Canal Department of Fish and Wildlife ESA Listings Public Contracts Settlement Water Rights

9th Circ. Reminds BOEM About The Importance Of Evidence

On Jan. 22, 2014, the Ninth Circuit held that the final environmental impact statement ("FEIS") and supplemental environmental impact statement ("SEIS") regarding the effects of proposed leases for oil and gas development in...more

3/12/2014 - BOEM Environmental Impact Report Environmental Policies Evidence NEPA

New Article Takes Stock Of Federal Agency Proposal To Use Surrogates To Establish Take Limits

In an article forthcoming in the Journal of Environmental Studies and Sciences, Dr. Dennis Murphy and I examine a proposal by the Fish and Wildlife Service and National Marine Fisheries Service to amend the existing...more

3/11/2014 - Endangered Species Act ESA Listings Fish and Wildlife Service National Marine Fisheries Service

Science And Structured Decision Making: Fulfilling The Promise Of Adaptive Management For Imperiled Species

Abstract Scientists and policy makers have shown great industry in popularizing the concept of adaptive management for imperiled species, principally by promulgating slightly varying, multi-step adaptive-management cycles....more

2/28/2014 - Endangered Species Act ESA Listings

Ninth Circuit Denies Rehearing of Clean Air Act Suit and War of Words Ensues

On February 3, 2014, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit declined to rehear en banc a decision handed down last October by a three-judge panel, thereby leaving in place a decision that could significantly...more

2/10/2014 - Carbon Emissions Clean Air Act Environmental Claims Environmental Liability EPA Greenhouse Gas Emissions Oil & Gas Power Plants SCOTUS

Ninth Circuit Finds Environmental Document for Chukchi Sea Lease Sale Violates NEPA

On January 22, 2014, the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit held that the Final Environmental Impact Statement ("FEIS") and Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement ("SEIS") regarding the effects of...more

2/4/2014 - BOEM Environmental Impact Report Environmental Policies NEPA Offshore Drilling Oil & Gas

House Passes Healthy Forests Bill That Would Amend ESA With Respect To Forest Reserve Projects

On September 20, 2013, H.R. 1526, the Restoring Healthy Forests for Healthy Communities Act, was passed by the House of Representatives by a vote of 244-173. Shortly thereafter, the bill was referred to the Senate Committee...more

10/14/2013 - Endangered Species Act Land Preservation Natural Resources

Federal Wildlife Agencies Issue Proposed Rule That Would Codify Practice Of Using Surrogates In Incidental Take Statements

On September 4, 2013, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and National Marine Fisheries Service (collectively, the Services) issued a proposal rule to amend the regulations governing consultation under section 7 of the...more

9/5/2013 - Endangered Species Endangered Species Act Fish and Wildlife Service Incidental Take Permits National Marine Fisheries Service Proposed Regulation

Corps Of Engineers Issues Guidance Regarding Section 7(a)(2) Consultation

On June 11, 2013, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers issued a guidance memo regarding its obligations under section 7 of the Endangered Species Act....more

7/24/2013 - Endangered Species Endangered Species Act US Army Corps of Engineers

Plaintiffs Claim Victory In Sharp Park Case Despite Mixed Record Of Success

On July 1, 2013, the United States District Court for the Northern District of California issued an order granting, in part, Plaintiffs’ motion for attorneys fees in Wild Equity Institute v. City and County of San Francisco,...more

7/5/2013 - Attorney's Fees Endangered Species Act Golf Courses Incidental Take Permits

U.S. Fish And Wildlife Service Designates 2,485 Acres As Critical Habitat For Buena Vista Lake Shrew

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) designated 2,485 acres in Kern County and Kings County in California as critical habitat for the Buena Vista Lake shrew (Sorex ornatus relictus). ...more

7/4/2013 - Critical Habitat Endangered Species Fish and Wildlife Service

Court Allows EPA To Stop Ongoing Projects, Years After Permits Were Granted

In 2007, Mingo Logan Coal Company received a Clean Water Act permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to discharge dredged or fill material from a mountain top coal mine in West Virginia into three...more

5/29/2013 - Clean Water Act EPA Executive Orders Permits US Army Corps of Engineers Water

Idaho Enacts Law Declaring The State Has Primacy Over Resident Fish And Wildlife

The State of Idaho enacted a law this spring asserting that the State has “primacy over the management of fish and wildlife.”...more

5/17/2013 - Fish and Wildlife Service Supremacy Clause

D.C. Circuit Holds EPA Can Invalidate a Clean Water Act Section 404 Permit After It Is Issued

In a ruling that adds to the complexity of the federal regulatory landscape, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia held that the Environmental Protection Agency ("EPA") has the authority to...more

4/26/2013 - Clean Water Act EPA Permits Public Works US Army Corps of Engineers Water

Court Grants Federal Government Additional Year To Issue New Biological Opinions For California Water Projects

On April 9, 2013, the United States District Court for the Eastern District of California ruled on a motion by the United States and the State of California to extend the period of time to issue new biological opinions...more

4/10/2013 - Endangered Species Act Extensions State Water Project

Fifth Circuit Stays Injunction In Whooping Crane Case

The United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit stayed an injunction issued by the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas requiring the State to prepare a habitat conservation plan for the...more

3/28/2013 - Endangered Species Act Habitat Conservation Plan Incidental Take Permits

California Releases Yet Another Preliminary Draft BDCP

On March 14, 2013, the State of California announced that it has released the first 4 of 12 chapters of the Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP). California plans to release the next three chapters on March 27, and the...more

3/19/2013 - Habitat Conservation Plan Water

Texas Commission On Environmental Quality Held Liable For Whooping Crane Deaths In Violation Of ESA

After an unusual eight day bench trial, the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas held State officials in Texas violated the Endangered Species Act’s (ESA) prohibition on take of the federally listed...more

3/18/2013

Fourth Circuit Strikes NMFS Biological Opinion Regarding Pesticide Registrations

In a unanimous panel decision, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit held that a biological opinion issued by the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) regarding the effects of three pesticides on...more

2/25/2013 - EPA National Marine Fisheries Service Pesticides

A Victory for Water Users in Siskiyou County

Water users in Siskiyou County have avoided an additional hurdle to exercising their valid water rights, according to the Siskiyou County Superior Court. On December 24, 2012, Judge Karen L. Dixon held that the legislature...more

1/10/2013 - Department of Fish and Wildlife Endangered Species Act ESA Listings Water Diversion Water Rights

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