Environmental Energy & Utilities Civil Remedies

Read need-to-know updates, commentary, and analysis on Environmental issues written by leading professionals.
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Forecast is Hazy For EPA’s Regional Haze Oversight Authority

Earlier this month, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals stayed EPA’s disapproval of the Texas and Oklahoma regional haze state implementation plans, as well as EPA’s promulgation of its own federal implementation plan. The...more

US Circuit Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit delays oral arguments in Clean Power Plan litigation

On May 16, the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit announced that it was delaying scheduled June 2 oral arguments before a three-judge panel in litigation over the Clean Power Plan. Instead, the DC...more

Higher Fines Imposed for Environmental Offences

Powerday plc was issued a record fine in April this year for offences relating to operations involving over 17,000 tonnes of waste deposited and stored illegally. Powerday – one of the biggest waste-management companies in...more

5th Circuit Vacates Verdict for ExxonMobil in CAA Citizen Suit: Still Not Much of a Win for the Plaintiffs

Last Friday, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals vacated a District Court decision which had refused to impose penalties on ExxonMobil for various violations of the Clean Air Act at ExxonMobil’s Baytown refinery. While the...more

Environmental Notes - May 2016

The news has been full of stories and articles concerning Coal Combustion Residuals (CCR), also referred to as coal ash. CCR became a hot topic in 2008 when a coal ash pond at a utility plant in Tennessee spilled more than 5...more

Three Strikes and the Commonwealth Is Out: The Natural Gas Act Preempts Article 97

Last week, Judge John Agostini ruled that the Natural Gas Act preempts Article 97 of the Massachusetts Constitution, which otherwise would have required a 2/3 vote of the Legislature before Article 97 land could be conveyed...more

Colorado Court Strikes Down Local Fracking Bans that Conflict with State Law

On May 2, 2016, the Colorado Supreme Court issued opinions in two separate cases challenging local bans on hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”). A win for the oil and gas industry in the state, the Supreme Court held that the...more

I Wish for a Happy Earth Day

April 22nd marked Earth Day, an annual celebration of environmentalism. The headline event of Earth Day 2016 was having 175 countries sign the Paris Agreement, which represents a global commitment to reducing greenhouse gas...more

Texas Court of Appeals Issues Important State Superfund Order

In a “case of first impression,” U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit,texascapitol sitting in Austin, in TCEQ v. Exxon Mobil Corporation, et al., issued an important decision interpreting the scope of the Texas Solid...more

Clean Power Plan - Work Continues Despite Stay

Even though the U.S. Supreme Court has stayed the implementation of EPA’s Clean Power Plan, planning continues at the state level on carbon emission reduction strategies. ...more

Energy Sector Alert Series: Appellate Courts Hearing More Energy Cases

In this eight-week alert series, we are providing a broad look at current and emerging issues facing the energy sector. Attorneys from across the firm will discuss issues ranging from environmental disclosures and risk...more

“Waters of the U.S.” Rule Still Subject to Nationwide Stay, For Now

Would you consider this a “Water of the United States” subject to the Clean Water Act? Well think again, because under a new rule, even a dry streambed or channel could be considered a “Water of the U.S.” and thus...more

Double Counting and Inflexibility Are Unreasonable in 4A Negotiations Says Mass. Appeals Court: Court Affirms Award of Attorneys’...

Seeking 80 percent of remedial costs from each of two potentially responsible parties and “inflexibility” in pre-litigation negotiations are sufficiently unreasonable to trigger attorneys’ fees under the Massachusetts cleanup...more

Sixth Circuit Exercises Jurisdiction over Federal Clean Water Rule Challenges

Nationwide Stay of WOTUS Rules Remains in Effect - On February 22, 2016, the Sixth Circuit ruled that it has jurisdiction to hear numerous consolidated petitions filed in both district and circuit courts across the...more

Renewable Energy Remains Poised for a Banner Year in 2016

Opposition to the Clean Power Plan (CPP), promulgated by the EPA and championed by the Obama administration as a path to a cleaner energy future, recently came to a head as the Supreme Court granted opponents a stay halting...more

The Long and Winding Road of the Clean Power Plan Litigation

The Clean Power Plan (CPP) is without a doubt one of the most complex and controversial regulatory undertakings in the EPA’s history, so much so that it was challenged in court – twice – before it was even published in the...more

U.S. Supreme Court Challenges EPA and Weighs into the Climate Change Debate --- Observations and Implications

In a potential blow to EPA and President Barack Obama’s legacy on climate change (that was softened with Supreme Court Justice’s passing on February 13, 2015) the U.S. Supreme Court --in an unprecedented and extraordinary...more

Environmental Notes - February 2016

The U.S. Supreme Court has blocked implementation of President Obama’s signature plan to address climate change pending a decision by the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals on the plan’s legality. The Clean Power Plan is being...more

Supreme Court Blocks Clean Power Plan, But Scalia’s Death Changes Outlook on Ultimate Fate

The U.S. Supreme Court has blocked implementation of President Obama’s signature plan to address climate change pending a decision by the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals on the plan’s legality. The Clean Power Plan is being...more

Renewable Energy Update - February 2016 #2

Renewable Energy Focus - President Obama requests significant funding boost for clean energy R&D - Solar Industry Magazine - Feb 9 - President Barack Obama’s 2017 budget proposal for the U.S. Department of...more

U.S. Supreme Court Unexpectedly Stays Clean Power Plan

In a virtually unprecedented move, the Supreme Court yesterday issued an order staying the Clean Power Plan, the cornerstone of President Obama’s environmental agenda and the most significant step the country has ever taken...more

Supreme Court Orders Temporary Halt to Clean Power Plan

On February 9, the U.S. Supreme Court delivered a major setback to the Obama Administration’s efforts to curb emissions of carbon dioxide from existing power plants in the U.S. In a 5-4 split decision, the Court granted...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - February 2016 #2

Environmental and Policy Focus - Supreme Court deals blow to President Obama’s efforts to regulate power plant greenhouse gas emissions - New York Times - Feb 9 - In a major setback for President Obama’s...more

Foley Hoag Climate Update: February 2016

The Paris Outcome - After two weeks of intense negotiations at the Paris climate conference, 195 countries finally adopted the Paris Agreement and a Decision to limit “the increase in the global average temperature to...more

Implications of the Clean Power Plan Stay

Late in the day on Tuesday, February 9, the U.S. Supreme Court stayed, for at least a year and possibly longer, the implementation of the Clean Power Plan (CPP), the US Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s)...more

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