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CEQA Bill to Protect Native American Cultural Resources Creates New Challenges and Opportunities for Project Applicants

On September 25, 2014, Governor Brown signed Assembly Bill 52 ("AB 52"), which modifies the California Environmental Quality Act ("CEQA") to add new protections for Native American cultural resources and enhances the role of...more

Proposition 48: A North Fork in the Road for Tribal Casinos

Continuing our series on the 2014 California election ballot, we now turn to Proposition 48, the Referendum on Indian Gaming Compacts. If voters approve the referendum November 4th, Native American tribes may be able...more

Fall 2014 CEQA Roundup: Legislative and Regulatory Developments

A number of recent legislative and regulatory developments in or related to CEQA will impact public agencies, developers, and practitioners in the coming year. Some significant recent developments include: SB 743...more

Tribe’s Gamble That Casino Land Transfer Approval Not Subject to CEQA Pays Off

Picayune Rancheria of Chukchansi Indians v. Brown, C074506 (9/24/2014) - In a recent Third District Court of Appeal published opinion, the court in Picayune Rancheria of Chukchansi Indians v. Edmund G. Brown, Jr. (3rd....more

Senators Critique Proposed Federal Rules for Hydraulic Fracturing on Federal and Indian Lands

On September 30, 2014, a block of twelve Democratic U.S. Senators presented a letter to the White House’s Office of Management and Budget (“OMB”), urging stricter fracking regulations. The Bureau of Land Management (“BLM”),...more

Governor Signs Two New CEQA Bills

Governor Brown has signed two new bills amending the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA). AB 52 establishes new consultation procedures with California Native American tribes, and provides that an adverse change to a...more

New Law Requires Formal Consultation with Native American Tribes During CEQA Process

Agencies Must, Upon Request, Consult With Tribes About “Tribal Cultural Resources” - Assembly Bill 52, signed yesterday by Gov. Jerry Brown, seeks to protect a new class of resources under CEQA: “tribal cultural...more

Renewable Energy Update -- August 2014 #2

Renewable Energy Focus - Renewables provide 56 percent of new U.S. generating capacity in first half of 2014: Electric Light & Power - Jul 21: Solar, wind, biomass, geothermal, and hydropower provided 55.7 percent of...more

The Wind River Reservation Treatment-as-State Controversy: How Confusion Undermines Opportunities for Cooperative Governance

Under certain statutes, tribes can exercise civil jurisdiction over non-Indians. For instance, the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act allows tribes to pursue claims for natural resource...more

Bureau Of Indian Affairs Proposes Regulation To Allow Taking Of Land Into Trust For Tribes In Alaska

After decades of interpreting the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act of 1971 (ANCSA) to preclude the federal government’s acquisition of land in trust for tribes in Alaska, on May 1, 2014, the Bureau of Indian Affairs...more

EPA’s Proposed Rule for New Power Plants Could Trigger Excessive Title V Permit Fees

Proposed Greenhouse Gas Performance Standards for new power plants will have broader implications for Clean Air Act operating permit fees. The public comment period will soon close on May 9, 2014 for the Environmental...more

Peel River Watershed Decision Results In Environment Groups Suing Yukon Government, File No.:99001-100

Nacho Nyak Dun, theTr’ondek Hwech’in (two First Nations), the Canadian Park sand Wilderness Society and the Yukon Conservation Society are suing the Yukon government over the land use plan for the Peel River watershed on the...more

Bureau of Land Management to Focus Anew on Venting and Flaring on Federal and Indian Lands

Consistent with the administration’s ongoing focus on methane emissions, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is initiating a process of inviting feedback for the anticipated rulemaking regarding Onshore Oil and Gas Order 9,...more

Fish And Wildlife Service Considers Increased Regulation Of Oil And Gas In Refuges

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced on February 24 that it will be developing proposed regulations to adopt a significantly more stringent approach to the management of oil and gas activities associated with any...more

Tighter Regulations Amid the Fracking Fray: The Bureau of Land Management’s proposals could affect production on 700 million acres...

The federal government is poised to tighten regulation of hydraulic fracturing — the drilling method behind the boom in U.S. natural gas production — by proposing to revise rules affecting 700 million acres of federal and...more

Washington State Supreme Court Issues Landmark Ruling: “Overriding Considerations Of The Public Interest” Do Not Justify...

On October 3, 2013, the Washington State Supreme Court ruled in Swinomish Indian Tribal Community v. Wash. Dept. of Ecology (No. 87672-0, Wash. Oct. 3, 2013) that the Department of Ecology exceeded its authority by applying...more

Envirnomental Regulatory Update: Environmental Progress & Sustainable Energy - Volume 32, Issue 3 - October 2013

Oil and Gas Update - Hydraulic Fracturing Regulations - Bureau of Land Management: On May 16, 2013, the U.S. Department of Interior’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) released a Supplemental Notice of Proposed...more

Alberta's Policy on Consultation with First Nations on Land and Natural Resource Management, 2013

On August 16, 2013, the Government of Alberta ("Alberta") released its Policy on Consultation with First Nations on Natural Resource Management, 2013 (the "Policy"). The Policy is the product of extensive consultation with...more

BLM Revises Proposed Rule on Hydraulic Fracturing

On May 16, 2013, the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management (“BLM”) issued a revised proposed rule regarding hydraulic fracturing on federal and Indian lands for oil and gas production....more

BLM Issues Revised Proposed Fracking Regulations

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has issued a revised proposed rule for regulating hydraulic fracturing—or “fracking.” ...more

Changes to First Nations Consultation in Alberta

On April 2, 2013, Alberta released a draft of The Government of Alberta's Policy on Consultation with First Nations on Land and Natural Resource Management, 2013 (the "Draft Policy"). The Government's deadline for comments on...more

Renewable Energy Update -- April 23, 2013

Renewable Energy Focus - ..Weakest quarter for clean energy investment since 2009, Bloomberg - Apr 14: Global investment in clean energy in the first three months of 2013 was lower than in any quarter for the...more

A Look at the Obama Administration’s Upcoming Hydraulic Fracturing Regulations

This spring, the oil industry and environmental groups are expecting the Department of Interior’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to issue a revised rule that will regulate hydraulic fracturing (fracking) on federal and...more

The Recent “Culvert Decision” in United States v. Washington Is Likely To Have Significant Implications For Governmental and...

On March 29, 2013, United States District Judge Ricardo S. Martinez ordered the State of Washington to replace culverts under State owned roads that block the passage of salmon to critical habitat. The court earlier found...more

US District Court Judge Orders Washington Highway Culverts Opened for Fish Passage

Federal district court Judge Ricardo Martinez has issued a permanent injunction requiring the Washington State Department of Transportation (“WSDOT”), the Washington State Department of Natural Resources, and the Washington...more

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