Environmental Updates

Read need-to-know updates, commentary, and analysis on Environmental issues written by leading professionals.
News & Analysis as of

2nd Circuit case highlights complexities of ballast water regs

Effective control of ship-borne, nonindigenous organisms has proved to be a major challenge to the maritime industry, international maritime organizations, national and local governments, environmental organizations, and,...more

New Strategy to Limit Neonicotinoids and Other “High Risk” Pesticides in Québec

Québec’s press release states that the Strategy “sets out the major directions and goals that will guide government action to protect public health, pollinators, and the environment in the coming years.” One of the ways the...more

MATS, Take Two: EPA Still Supports the Rule (And EPA Is Correct)

Late last week, EPA issued a Supplemental Finding, concluding that it is still “appropriate and necessary” to regulate hazardous air pollutants from coal- and oil-fired electric generating units. The Supplemental Finding was...more

Just Like Any Good Recipe, Alberta’s Climate Leadership Plan Has a Little Bit of Everything

On Sunday, November 22, 2015, just days before the United Nations conference on climate change in Paris, Alberta released its Climate Leadership Plan (Plan) together with the Climate Leadership Report (Report) upon which it...more

Updates on Environmental, Administrative and Regulatory Law: EPA's Proposed Cross-State Air Pollution Update Rule

On November 16th, EPA proposed an “update” to its Cross-State Air Pollution Rule (CSAPR) ozone season requirements. Starting in 2017, the proposal is intended to reduce summertime emissions of nitrogen oxides (NOx) from power...more

Property Assessed Clean Energy (PACE) Legal Update – November 2015

In the past few months, we have seen some decisions regarding Property Assessed Clean Energy Loans (PACE loans) that may open the doors for additional states, counties, and local municipalities to authorize, create, and fund...more

Phase I Of The Nutrient Recycling Challenge Competition Announced

On November 12, 2015, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a partnership with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and other environmental and scientific experts to create the Nutrient Recycling...more

New York State To Order That 50% Of Power Consumed By New Yorkers Be From Renewable Sources By 2030

Reforming the Energy Vision (REV) Initiative: The New York Times reports that Governor Cuomo will soon direct the New York State Public Service Commission (NYSPSC) to take concrete steps to codify the State’s goal of...more

State Lands Commission’s CEQA Review of SF Bay/Delta Sand Mining Project Approval Is Adequate, But Fails to Fulfill Obligation to...

The First District Court of Appeal held the California State Lands Commission’s (“CSLC”) EIR for a project involving the lease of sovereign lands beneath San Francisco Bay for private dredge mining of sand complied with CEQA;...more

EWG Begins Certification Program for Consumer Products

The Environmental Working Group (EWG) announced on October 27, 2015, EWG VERIFIED™, a verification program intended “to give consumers peace of mind at point of sale as they try to avoid toxic and potentially harmful...more

Asbestos: the French State Council (“Conseil d’Etat”) holds the State liable when an employer is deemed responsible for...

On the 9th of November 2015, the French State Council (“Conseil d’Etat”) admitted for the first time the possibility for an employer held liable on the grounds of inexcusable fault to take action against the State so as to be...more

Some Hard Truths About Addressing Climate Change

On November 23, 2015 Boston Globe had an op-ed by Joshua Goldstein and Steven Pinker concerning some “Inconvenient Truths for the environmental movement.” I’m sorry to say that I agree with pretty much every word of it. Why...more

Washington Has A Public Trust Obligation to Address Climate Change — So What?

Last week, a trial judge in Washington State, in Foster v. Washington Department of Ecology, ruled that the Public Trust Doctrine requires the State of Washington to address climate change more aggressively. Greenwire’s...more

CESAR Files Delta Smelt ESA Suit Against DWR, Interior and USFWS

On November 19, 2015, the Center for Environmental Science, Accuracy and Reliability (CESAR) filed a lawsuit against the California Department of Water Resources (DWR), the U.S. Department of the Interior (Interior) and the...more

Xcel Energy Reports 24 Community Solar Garden Projects are Beginning Construction

Xcel Energy filed its monthly report for the Community Solar Garden program with the Public Utilities Commission last week, revealing that 24 projects are moving to the beginning stages of construction....more

Seeking Net Benefits: President Obama Issues New Federal Policy on Addressing and Mitigating Environmental Harm Early in the...

On November 3, 2015, the White House released a Presidential Memorandum intended to encourage federal agencies to consider land use planning more holistically, clearly and consistently, addressing mitigation needs before they...more

OMB Releases Fall 2015 Regulatory Agenda

Earlier today, the White House Office of Management and Budget released its semi-annual Unified Regulatory Agenda and Regulatory Plan for Fall 2015, covering 59 Federal departments, agencies, and commissions. Entries are...more

Addressing Climate Change in SEC Filings and Other Public Disclosures: What These Disclosures Mean for Businesses

Regulatory agencies are focusing on required climate change-related disclosures in securities filings and other public disclosures, seeking to ensure not only that such disclosures are made, but also that they are supported...more

Renewable Energy Update - November 2015 #4

Silver Lake nearly quadruples initial investment in SolarCity - Los Angeles Times: - Nov 18: Investment firm Silver Lake announced plans Wednesday to nearly quadruple the size of its initial stake in rooftop solar power...more

Sixth Circuit Rejects Clean Air Act Preemption of State Common Law Claims: Four Things to Know

In two decisions released on November 2, 2015, Merrick, et al. v. Diageo Americas Supply, Inc. and Little et al. v. Louisville Gas & Electric Company; PPL Corporation, the U. S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit...more

Presidential Directive Establishes New Compensatory Mitigation Policy, Expanding Future Costs and Obligations for Federally...

On November 3, 2015, President Obama directed key federal agencies to adopt new or more extensive compensatory mitigation policies over the next six to twenty-four months. Once implemented, these policies could block...more

Ontario Government Consulting on Proposed Design of the New Cap-and-Trade Program

The Ontario Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) has released details of its proposed cap-and-trade program designed to address climate change through the reduction of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. On...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - November 2015 #2

Environmental and Policy Focus: San Diego Regional Water Quality Control Board amends regional MS4 permit to provide alternate compliance: Allen Matkin - Nov 19: On Wednesday afternoon, the San Diego Regional Water...more

Alberta Announces Climate Leadership Plan

Yesterday, the Alberta government announced its Climate Leadership Plan (Plan) and released to the public the Climate Leadership Report to Minister (Report) it commissioned from the Climate Change Advisory Panel. While...more

EPA Intends to Promulgate Final TSCA 8(a) Rule in October 2016

According to an item in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Fall 2015 Regulatory Agenda, EPA intends to promulgate a final Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Section 8(a) rule in October 2016 concerning...more

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