Environmental Energy & Utilities

Read need-to-know updates, commentary, and analysis on Environmental issues written by leading professionals.
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Alberta's Bill 20: Climate Leadership Implementation Act

The Alberta Government introduced Bill 20, the Climate Leadership Implementation Act, on May 24, 2016. The Bill proposes a carbon levy on fuel consumption and marks the Government’s first step towards executing Alberta’s...more

Alta Ski Area conduit micro-hydro project

Alta Ski Area has proposed developing a micro-hydropower project along an existing pipeline, and hopes to benefit from a streamlined regulatory process. Federal regulators have made a preliminary determination that the...more

Alberta Announces Bill 20 – The Climate Leadership Implementation Act

On May 24, 2016 the Alberta government introduced Bill 20 – Climate Leadership Implementation Act (the CLIA). The CLIA establishes the legislative framework for Alberta's new carbon tax (referred to in the CLIA as the carbon...more

New Judge, Same Result – $81 Million CWA Civil Penalty Appealed

U.S. District Court Judge Dee Drell (Western District, LA) recently denied a motion to alter or amend the Court’s judgment against CITGO Petroleum Corp.– allowing an $81 million judgment against the oil company to...more

National Academies Of Sciences, Engineering, And Medicine Holding Second Public Meeting On Future

The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine is hosting a second public meeting examining future biotechnology products on June 1-2, 2016. This two-day meeting will run from 9:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m. both days,...more

Draft Released of Highly Anticipated Massachusetts Energy Bill

This week a draft of the long-awaited Massachusetts energy bill was reported out of the Joint Committee on Telecommunications, Utilities and Energy. The bill would require the Commonwealth’s distribution companies to...more

Sustainable Development Update - May 2016 #3

Sustainable Development Focus - Energy efficiency is a must for California buildings moving forward - Los Angeles Daily News - May 14 - Energy efficient homes like those at Skylar at Playa Vista in Los...more

The implications of the transition to a ‘circular economy’, and overview of the content and current status of draft EU...

In this client alert we discuss the implications of the transition to a ‘circular economy’ for producers of, and traders in, raw and/or recycled materials of all kinds, manufacturers of products and actors in all stages of...more

Tenth Circuit Bars Class Tort Claims for Failing to Plead Injury

Underscoring the importance of pleading actual injury in a toxic tort class action, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit dismissed Oklahoma class claims that were based only on “reasonable concern” of future injury...more

Toxic Tort and Environmental Litigation: Discharger of Petroleum Not Able to Maintain Suit Against Another Discharger (5/16)

Under Navigation Law § 181, a party injured by the intentional or inadvertent discharge of petroleum products may bring a claim for damages against the party responsible for the discharge. But what if the injured party also...more

UCR Provides More Detail On Biomass Based Fuel And Chemical Project That Received 1.3 Million

On May 11, 2016, the University of California, Riverside (UCR) provided more information about the project that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is funding with $1.3 million as part of the Biomass Research and...more

News of Note in IP

Each week, Sheppard Mullin brings you News of Note in IP: The latest news in the IP-related fields of technology, privacy, fashion, advertising, music, and social media, curated by our IP team. Here are some of the stories...more

Russian Legislation Update: May 2016

Currency Control - On 13 April the Government adopted Resolution No. 300 regarding, among other things, currency control bodies. Due to the abolishment of the Federal Service for Fiscal and Budgetary Supervision,...more

Confluence of Emissions Regulations Favor Renewable Energy Investment (Part 2)

In yesterday’s Part 1, we discussed the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) rules regulating emissions from existing and new stationary electricity generating units. In today’s post, we discuss EPA’s regulations regarding...more

EPA Releases Proposed Renewable Fuel Volume Requirements

On May 18, 2016, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a proposed increase of the renewable fuel volume requirements under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) program for all biofuels in 2017 and...more

Eagle Take Permit Program Revamped – Longer Permits and Clearer Mitigation Requirements

The United States Fish and Wildlife Service (“USFWS”) recently proposed revisions to its regulations authorizing take of bald and golden eagles. The Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act (“BGEPA”) imposes criminal and...more

Hydro relicensing and intervention timing

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issues hydropower licenses for terms of up to 50 years. At least 5 years before license expiration, the licensee is required to notify the Commission and the public whether it intends...more

Act on wind turbine investments

On May 20, 2016, the Sejm (lower chamber of the Polish Parliament) adopted an Act on wind turbine investments (the “Act”). From the very beginning of the legislative process, i.e., from the moment when the bill of Act...more

New York State Continues its Push to Reform State Utility Markets

On May 19, 2016, the New York State Public Service Commission (the “PSC”) released Filing No. 749 entitled “Order Adopting a Ratemaking and Utility Revenue Model Policy Framework,” which was made in furtherance of the State’s...more

ARPA-E Provides $300,000 In Third Round Funding For PETROSS Project

In May of 2016, the DOE's Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy (ARPA-E) awarded the University of Illinois and the University of Florida $300,000 to continue researching ultra-productive biofuel crops. ...more

Massachusetts Ranks Second and Boston Ranks Seventh in the 2016 U.S. Clean Tech Leadership Index

Last week, Clean Edge published a report titled the “U.S. Clean Tech Leadership Index” (“Index”) that ranked Massachusetts as the second state and Boston as the seventh metro area in the U.S. according to its scoring...more

Full Court Press: EPA Issues Final Rulemakings and a Draft Information Collection Request in Its Ongoing Effort to Reduce Methane...

As part of President Obama’s Climate Action Plan: Strategy to Reduce Methane Emissions, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) on May 12, 2016 released a suite of final actions and a proposed action that are focused...more

Confluence of Emissions Regulations Favor Renewable Energy Investment (Part 1)

GOP Presidential Candidate Donald Trump made several sweeping promises while on the campaign trail vowing to reopen shuttered mines and bring coal back to its dominance of a decade ago. These promises, however, are dated as...more

Submissions Now Open For Bioenergy 2016: Mobilizing The Bioeconomy Through Innovation Posters

On May 16, 2016, the DOE's BETO invited applications for abstracts for the poster session of the ninth annual conference Bioenergy 2016: Mobilizing the Bioeconomy through Innovation. Poster abstracts are due by June 3, 2016,...more

EPA to Reduce Methane Emissions from the Oil and Natural Gas Industry

On May 12, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released final regulations (the Rules) aimed at reducing methane emissions from certain new and modified oil and gas facilities by 40% to 45% from 2012 levels by 2025....more

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