Environmental Civil Procedure Administrative Agency

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D.C. Circuit Affirms EPA’s Utility Air Toxics Rule: An “Appropriate” Rule Need Not Be Justified By Cost-Benefit Analysis

Yesterday, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed EPA’s rule setting limits for emissions of mercury and other air toxics from fossil-fuel-fired electric steam generating units. The focus of the decision – and the issue...more

EPA, Army Corps Propose New Rule to Govern Federal Clean Water Act Jurisdiction

Intended to clarify confusion from prior US Supreme Court decisions, the rules could have far-reaching implications for many stakeholders. The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the US Army Corps of...more

Clarification or More Regulation? Agencies Issue Proposed Waters of the United States Rulemaking

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) and United States Army Corps of Engineers (the “Corps”) on March 25, 2014 jointly issued a proposed rulemaking (Docket No. EPA-HQ-OW- 2011-0880) intended to clarify...more

Obama Administration Releases Proposed Rule on "Waters of the United States"

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency released a proposed rule that will impact many segments of the U.S. economy, greatly expanding future permitting requirements. The proposed rule...more

Clean Water Act Jurisdiction Proposed Rule Released: Would Expand Federal Jurisdiction over Streams and Wetlands

After several years of false starts, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) have released their proposed rule, Definition of 'Waters of the United States' Under the Clean Water Act,...more

EPA, Army Corps Of Engineers Propose Rule Clarifying Clean Water Act Jurisdiction

On March 25, the US Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers released a proposed rule to clarify Clean Water Act jurisdiction over streams and wetlands by re-defining “Waters of the United States” in...more

Bowman v. California Coastal Commission: New California Court of Appeal Decision Holds that a Collateral Attack is no Substitute...

Sometimes in land use law, the most impactful court holdings come from the simplest of cases. That may be the situation with the new California Court of Appeal decision in Bowman v. California Coastal Commission, issued by...more

Federal Approval of Tule Wind Project Upheld in District Court on NEPA, Migratory Bird Act, and Bald & Golden Eagle Act Claims

On March 25, 2014, in The Protect Our Communities Foundation et al. v. Jewell et al. , the US District Court for the Southern District of California issued a decision on a challenge to the Tule Wind Project and found in favor...more

Coal Companies, Don’t Look Behind; EPA May Be Gaining on You

As the lawyers among our readers know, the denial of a certiorari petition does not establish precedent. However, that doesn’t make it unimportant. Yesterday, the Supreme Court denied cert. in Mingo Logan Coal Co. v. EPA. ...more

How Powerful is the Endangered Species Act? Just Ask the Delta Smelt

The Endangered Species Act is a powerful tool for the protection of threatened and endangered species and their habitats. Just how powerful was made clear last week when the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals largely reversed a...more

February Closes with Significant Activity Relating to EPA's Regulation of Greenhouse Gases

Last week saw two developments regarding EPA's regulation of greenhouse gases. On February 24, 2014, the Supreme Court of the United States heard oral arguments in Utility Air Regulatory Group v. the Environmental Protection...more

U.S. Supreme Court Hears Arguments in Landmark Case on Federal Greenhouse Gas Regulation

My colleague, Daniel Lee, followed oral argument yesterday in the U.S. Supreme Court's consideration of federal greenhouse gas (GHG) regulation in Utility Air Regulatory Group v. EPA, and provides this analysis...more

US Supreme Court considers EPA greenhouse gas emissions regulations

May the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulate greenhouse gas emissions from power plants and industry under the Clean Air Act? The Supreme Court of the United States heard oral argument on this issue yesterday,...more

In Massachusetts, Regulatory Agencies Are Still (Almost) Always Right

The Massachusetts Endangered Species Act, or MESA, is similar in some respects to the federal ESA, but is definitely its own kettle of (endangered) fish. Indeed, after the decision by the Supreme Judicial Court yesterday in...more

US Supreme Court Briefing of Greenhouse Gas Cases Completed — Oral Argument Scheduled for February 24, 2014

Briefing has just concluded in a matter before the US Supreme Court involving challenges to the suite of greenhouse gas (GHG) cases decided by the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit in June 2012. In...more

Cooperative Federalism Is Even Messier Than We Thought: 21 States Oppose the Chesapeake Bay TMDL

Last fall, the District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania affirmed EPA’s TMDL for the Chesapeake Bay. As I noted at the time, Judge Rambo pointed to the sometimes “messy and cumbersome” nature of cooperative...more

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

FDA Refusal to Define "Natural" Leaves Food Manufacturers at Risk for More and Costlier Class Action Litigation and Looking for...

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration this month declined to weigh in on the issue of whether food products containing genetically modified ingredients can be labeled as "natural," refusing the request of three federal judges...more

What’s in the Air this Year? Here Is What You Need to Know About the Clean Air Act in 2014

This year promises many important developments with respect to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s implementation and enforcement of the federal Clean Air Act. Here are some major enforcement trends and regulatory...more

Are You Subsidizing Another State's Air Pollution?

You might have to, if the Environmental Protection Agency gets its way in the U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday. The court will hear oral arguments in a case dealing with the EPA’s ability to regulate cross-state, or...more

Industry Groups Petition D.C. Circuit for Review of Revisions to Air Pollution Standards for Oil & Gas Production Sources

On November 22, industry groups filed in the D.C. Circuit five petitions for review of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) final amendments to new source performance standards (NSPS) governing the oil and natural gas...more

Court Rules That Delayed Compliance With A FOIA Request Remains A Violation

In a recent Illinois Appellate Court decision, the Court held that a public body was in violation of the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) where the public body initially willfully ignored its obligation to respond to a FOIA...more

“Waters of the U.S.” — What’s Not To Understand?

EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers continue their ongoing effort to bring clarity to the tangled mess wrought by the Supreme Court in Rapanos v. U. S. In that 2006 case, a fractured Court issued five separate opinions on the...more

CEQA Standing and Exhaustion Rules Applied In Action Challenging City of San Jose’s General Plan Update

The Sixth District Court of Appeal, in a published decision filed September 30, 2013, reversed a grant of summary judgment in favor of defendant City of San Jose in an action challenging its “Envision San Jose” comprehensive...more

City Planning Commission’s Certification of EIR Found Improper Because City Council Improperly Delegated CEQA Certification

A city’s planning commission certified an Environmental Impact Report (“EIR”) for a city general plan update and recommended the city council approve the update. The certification and approval were not appealed to the...more

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