Business Organization Environmental

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The cost of non-compliance

Thames Water has received a record £20.3 million fine for water pollution. The fine is ten times higher than the previous largest fine of £2 million (given to Southern Water in December 2016)....more

Boardroom Perspectives: How Directors Can Use Sustainability to Drive Value

Boards frequently encounter sustainability and other environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues in the oversight of a company’s operations, management, financial reporting and public disclosure. Investors increasingly...more

Indonesian feed-in tariffs – New rules may under-power the renewables sector

Indonesia's new feed-in tariffs (FITs) for renewable energy present a conundrum. Will renewables flourish or fade in the new revenue environment? Investors will not welcome the lower tariffs under the new regime, but state...more

Investing in renewable projects in Europe - January 2017

The renewable energy market never stands still. Technical advances and the increased prevalence of competitive tendering mechanisms are driving down costs globally. Changes in political and economic conditions can transform...more

Investors Don’t Think That Climate Change Is A Hoax: Black Rock Is Losing Its Patience

Black Rock, which manages more than $5 trillion in assets, has released a statement on how it “engages with climate risk.” The statement has three main elements. ...more

Non-compliance with carbon market rules could result in substantial penalties

Ontario’s cap and trade program, which launched in January 2017, includes a number of rules regarding participation in the carbon market where emission allowances and offset credits are bought and sold. The stated purpose of...more

New Indonesian feed-in tariffs: Will renewables benefit?

In January 2017, the Indonesian Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources introduced new feed-in-tariff (FIT) and procurement schemes for a range of renewable energy sources. The Minister issued a new renewable energy...more

5 tips for environmental due diligence in business transactions

Virtually all business transactions involve some level of environmental risk. The key is to identify all of the potential risks and collect sufficient information about them early in the due diligence period of a transaction....more

Coal Plant Shutdown: Owners and Operators Need Vision – Part I

PDF Version Coal plant owners and operators can make a plant shutdown easier by planning now for the site’s future. This plan, or Vision, can help expedite shutdown efforts, reduce costs, improve relations with the local...more

SEC Issues a Call for Comments on All Aspects of the Conflict Minerals Rule

On January 31, the Acting Chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”), Michael Piwowar, issued an call for comments with regard to the conflict minerals rule. The rule was originally adopted by the SEC in...more

Protections afforded to Massachusetts' ancient burial grounds

See Charles E. Rounds, Jr., Protections Afforded to Massachusetts’ Ancient Burial Grounds, 73 Massachusetts Law Review176 (1988). Here is an external link to the article:...more

Key Decision on Corporate Separateness – English High Court Decides Not to “impose liability in an indeterminate amount, for an...

In a highly anticipated judgment, the English High Court has ruled that Royal Dutch Shell (RDS), a holding company that is the ultimate parent of the Shell Group, does not owe a duty of care to residents of the Niger Delta in...more

SHE Matters: Safety, Health and Environment Matters - Autumn/Winter 2017

Now more than ever, companies need to appreciate the significance of their financial position to when faced with a corporate manslaughter prosecution. Businesses should be on notice that regulatory fines may be much more...more

Sustainability Reporting Trends in the New Year – ’16 going on ‘17

If you’re feeling uncertain or confused about the future of sustainability reporting in the United States, you’re not alone. With the business world’s adoption of sustainability reports moving full steam ahead—and increasing...more

Record fine under sentencing guidelines

Southern Water is the latest company to receive a heavy fine for environmental offences, following a pollution incident in Kent in June 2012 where large amounts of sewage were expelled onto the Thanet coastline after pumping...more

California Water Rights: Compliance Checklist for 2017

Brownstein’s California Water Group is pleased to provide you with our California Water Rights: Compliance Checklist for 2017. Adequate maintenance and protection of your water rights requires compliance with certain...more

Public Decision Making newsletter - Summer Edition 2016

This newsletter summarises recent developments in resource management and local government law in New Zealand that are of particular relevance to local authorities and decision makers. In this edition, we address recent...more

IRS Further Updates Beginning of Construction Guidance for Renewable Energy Tax Credits

On December 15, 2016, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2017-04, which updates prior guidance regarding the beginning of construction requirement for renewable energy tax credits under IRC sections 45 and 48. ...more

IRS Issues Additional Guidance on Beginning of Construction Rules for Renewable Projects

On December 15, 2016, the Internal Revenue Service released Notice 2017-04, which provides welcome guidance on how to meet the “beginning of construction” requirements for wind and other qualified facilities. There has been...more

Financial Stability Board Task Force Issues Recommendations on Climate Change-Related Disclosures

In January 2016, the G20’s Financial Stability Board organized a task force, chaired by Michael Bloomberg, to come up with recommendations for a uniform framework for the disclosure of financial risks and opportunities...more

IRS Issues Welcome Guidance on “Continuity Safe Harbor” for Wind Energy Projects

New rules provide wind developers with additional time to satisfy a critical safe harbor. On December 15, 2016, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2017-4, which modifies the “continuity safe harbor” as set...more

Renewable Energy Investor Group Asks FERC to Designate Certain Passive Equity Interests in Public Utilities as “Non-Voting...

On December 9, 2016, a group of investors in renewable energy projects (“Petitioners”) asked the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to find that certain non-managing (i.e., passive) “tax equity” interests in public...more

IRS Updates “Beginning of Construction” Guidance

The IRS today issued highly anticipated guidance updating the “beginning of construction” requirement for the production tax credit (PTC) under Section 45 of the Internal Revenue Code (the Code) and the investment tax credit...more

Saudi Arabia unveils new US$50 billion water desalination programme - The Kingdom to offer privatisations as well as new water...

The Ministry of Environment, Water and Agriculture of Saudi Arabia has announced a new water desalination programme involving private sector participation worth over an estimated US$50 billion. The programme will be...more

Corporate dissolution will not protect former directors and officers from environmental liabilities

On December 10, 2016, Ontario’s Forfeited Corporate Property Act, 2015 (the FCPA), comes into force,1 along with related amendments to the Ontario Business Corporations Act (the OBCA).2 Directors and officers may be aware of...more

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