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California’s New Climate Change Laws Tighten Limits on GHG, Increase Legislative Oversight of CARB

California Governor Jerry Brown signed into law last week two controversial anti-climate change bills that will tighten greenhouse gas (GHG) limits by 40% and increase legislative supervision of the California Air Resources...more

California Moves Forward With Aggressive Greenhouse Gas Emission Targets – Governor Brown Signs Into Law SB 32 and AB 197

On September 8, California's Governor Brown signed companion bills from the Senate and Assembly, Senate Bill 32 (SB 32) and Assembly Bill 197 (AB 197), continuing California on a path to cut greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions –...more

California Governor Extends CEQA Litigation Streamlining Provisions for Large Projects Promoting Job Creation and Innovative...

Law Will Expedite Schedules for Qualified Projects - On Friday, Gov. Jerry Brown signed into law a bill extending special California Environmental Quality Act litigation streamlining provisions for large,...more

Legislature Passes Pair of Significant New Climate Change Bills

Gov. Brown Expected to Sign Laws that Will Have CEQA Implications - In the final days of its session, the California Legislature passed two climate change bills that expand existing laws aimed at reducing statewide...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - September 2016

Environmental and Policy Focus - Governor Brown and lawmakers reach deal for California climate funds - San Diego Union-Tribune - Aug 31 - California lawmakers on Wednesday approved a $900 million spending...more

Under the Dome: Inside the Maine State House (August 26, 2016)

Under the Dome: Inside the Maine State House provides a high-level overview of recent activity at the Maine State House. Maine Home to New National Monument - Utilizing powers granted to presidents under the...more

White House Issues Final Guidance on Consideration of Greenhouse Gas Emissions in NEPA Reviews

After more than six years of review and the issuance of several draft guidance documents, the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) published on Aug. 5, 2016, its final guidance on considering greenhouse gas...more

New Legislation in North Carolina Impacts the Agribusiness Industry

In the recently ended session in the General Assembly, Senate Bill 770 was enacted. This bill is entitled “An Act To Provide Further Regulatory Relief To The Agricultural Community.”...more

Bipartisan ESA Bill Proposes Funding for State Programs

In a year that has already seen its fair share of attempts to reform the Endangered Species Act (“ESA”), another proposal has made its way into the House of Representatives. Representatives Don Young (R-Alaska) and Debbie...more

West Coast Real Estate Update: June 2016 #1

California Governor Proposes "Build By Right" Approval Process for Affordable Housing - Recognizing the extreme need throughout California for construction of new affordable housing units, on May 13, 2016, Gov. Jerry...more

Updated Status of Oil-and Gas-Related Bills Proposed in California’s 2015-2016 Legislative Session

June 3, 2016 was the final deadline for oil- and gas-related bills introduced in the 2015-2016 legislative session to move through their house of origin. Below is a summary of those bills, many of which relate to natural gas...more

Wolf-Rider Introduced in House Funding Bill

As recently reported by the Center for Biological Diversity, a rider has been proposed for an appropriations bill that would provide $1.5 billion to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service in 2017.  The controversial rider would...more

Governor Seeks to Streamline Approval of Multifamily Housing Projects

In an effort to encourage housing production, Governor Jerry Brown has made a bold proposal to streamline the approval of certain multifamily housing projects that include a portion deed-restricted affordable units. The...more

Senate Hears Testimony on Senator Feinstein’s Emergency Drought Relief Bill

On May, 17, 2016, the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources’ Subcommittee on Water and Energy held hearings on a number of pending bills, including S. 2533, sponsored by Senator Diane Feinstein (D-CA). The...more

New Kansas Act Allows Relief for Purchase of Contaminated Property

On May 9, 2016, Kansas Governor Sam Brownback signed into law the Contaminated Property Redevelopment Act (the “Act”). The goal of this Act is to allow purchasers in Kansas to acquire real property with pre-existing...more

Renewable Energy Update - May 2015

Renewable Energy Focus - U.S. proposes giving wind farms 30-year "incidental take" permits - Reuters - May 4 - U.S. wildlife managers on Wednesday again proposed granting 30-year permits to wind farms that...more

New Laws Reform California’s Surface Mining and Reclamation Act

True to his word, Governor Jerry Brown signed two bills, AB 1142 and SB 209, into law on Monday to reform California’s Surface Mining and Reclamation Act (SMARA). Now, before getting too excited, keep in mind that the new...more

For Virginia Land Use, Local Governments Have To Follow The Rules

Starting July 1, 2016 Virginia local governments must, in reviewing a residential rezoning or concept plan amendment, determine whether a requested land use exaction addresses an impact that is “specifically attributable” to...more

New Chinese Soil Pollution Law Planned for 2017 Could Be Accelerated

On April 17, 2016, China Central Television (CCTV), the country’s state-run broadcast network, aired a report claiming that nearly 500 students apparently developed illnesses (including leukemia) at a school built on...more

Congressional Hearings to be Held on New Critical Habitat Rules and Delisting under the Endangered Species Act

This week, two congressional committees are holding three separate hearings on issues related to the Endangered Species Act (ESA). On April 19, the House Committee on Natural Resources will hold an oversight hearing entitled...more

CA Lawmaker Floats a Legislative Fix to Siskiyou County Farm Bureau Case

Last summer, the Third District Court of Appeal issued a sweeping ruling in Siskiyou County Farm Bureau v. Department of Fish and Wildlife, which made any substantial diversions of water subject to the streambed alteration...more

What is President H.R. Clinton’s Energy Policy?

Even as the number of 2016 presidential candidates in both parties has dwindled, the media -- particularly television news -- has yet to focus on an in-depth discussion of the candidates’ policy proposals. While it was...more

Colorado House Votes Down Bill Giving Local Authorities Power Over Fracking

Two Democrats joined the Republicans in the Colorado House of Representatives on April 4, 2016, to defeat a bill that sought to assert local government control over oil and gas drilling. Drilling operations in Colorado have...more

Armada of Lobbyists, Lawyers and Consultants Has to Fear Curtatone in His Rowboat

If you’re in a construction trade, you’re probably not too happy with Somerville Mayor Joseph Curtatone, the only person standing between Steve Wynn and his dream of a $2 billion casino in Everett. Yet I have to believe...more

Energy Sector Alert Series: Hot Topics in California

Important energy issues continue to arise at the intersection of law and policy in California. Here are eight hot topics that require the attention of entities with interests in California's energy sector....more

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