Air Pollution Environmental Protection Agency

News & Analysis as of

A double defeat for EPA on regional haze regulations

On Friday, July 15, 2016, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit handed the United States Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) a stinging double defeat on its partial disapproval of Texas’ regional haze rule (the...more

Mercury Rule Moves Forward

The federal lawsuit filed by twenty-three states challenging EPA’s Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS) is in the 8th inning, and things are not looking good for the challengers. Some background is appropriate....more

Environmental Notes - July 2016

CONGRESS FINDS THE FORMULA TO REFORM CHEMICAL REGULATION - The Toxic Substance Control Act (TSCA) is the primary federal law by which the manufacture, import and use of chemical substances are regulated in the United...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - June 2016 #4

Environmental and Policy Focus - PG&E to close Diablo Canyon, California's last nuclear power plant - Los Angeles Times - Jun 21 - Pacific Gas & Electric Co. (PG&E) announced on Tuesday that it plans to close...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - June 2016 #3

Environmental and Policy Focus - Supreme Court rejects new challenge to EPA’s air pollution rule - The Hill - Jun 13 - The Supreme Court on Monday declined to consider a third request from a group of states to...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - June 2016 #2

Environmental and Policy Focus - Appellate court temporarily blocks Delta island sale - Sacramento Bee - Jun 7 - The California Third District Court of Appeal on Tuesday granted a temporary stay blocking...more

Air Emissions Regulated Under RCRA?

Certain regulated entities that operate under Clean Air Act permits are being reminded that those permits do not necessarily cover air emissions associated with the management of hazardous wastes regulated by the federal...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

Air Program Malfunction Exemption Nixed, But Not Agency Discretion

Virginia’s State Air Pollution Control Board (“Board”) recently amended its regulations to remove the long-standing malfunction exemption available to regulated sources of air pollution for violations of emission limits and...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

EPA Enforcement Initiatives Renew and Expand Industrial Target Priorities

EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance recently proposed changes to its National Program Manager (NMP) Guidance that, in part, would revise EPA’s National Enforcement Initiatives (“NEIs”) for federal fiscal...more

Environmental Notes - April 2016

EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance recently proposed changes to its National Program Manager (NMP) Guidance that, in part, would revise EPA’s National Enforcement Initiatives (“NEIs”) for federal fiscal...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - April 2016 #4

Environmental and Policy Focus - Three Michigan state and local officials face first criminal charges in Flint water crisis - The Guardian - Apr 20 - Three state and local officials involved in Flint’s water...more

Environmental Groups Sue Over Aircraft Emissions Rulemaking

The Center for Biological Diversity and Friends of the Earth have filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) seeking to compel the Agency to issue regulations limiting greenhouse gas emissions...more

EPA Continues to Dismantle Clean Air Act Affirmative Defenses — Blame It On the Judge(s)

On Wednesday, EPA published certain amendments to the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards in the Federal Register. EPA describes most of the changes as “technical corrections,” but there is one important substantive change. ...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - March 2016 #2

Environmental and Policy Focus - State Water Project allocation increased to 45 percent - Western Farm Press - Mar 17 - This year’s “miracle March” boosted water supply conditions well enough in California for...more

The EPA Reveals National Enforcement Initiatives Ahead of 2016 Election

If you thought you had to wait until after the 2016 election to learn about the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) next iteration of National Enforcement Initiatives—think again. The EPA has announced that, as of Oct. 1,...more

Court Places Aerospace Manufacturing/Rework Facility Air Pollution Control Technology (MACT) Challenge On Hold

On March 3, 2016, U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit placed on hold a lawsuit challenging revised toxic air pollutant emissions limits for the aerospace industry. A joint motion filed by the U.S....more

EPA Solicits Comments on Next Steps Toward Designating Regions Needing Stricter Controls of Sulfur Dioxide Air Emissions

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is requesting comment by March 31, 2016, on its intention to designate previously uncharacterized areas of the country with particularly large sources of sulfur dioxide (SO2)...more

The Fight to Stop the EPA’s “Clean Power Plan” Continues in the D.C. Circuit, Amid an Uncertain Future for Its Presumed Ultimate...

On February 19, 2016, 27 states, the United States Chamber of Commerce, and over 150 different organizations and entities (the “Petitioners”) filed their joint Opening Brief on Core Legal Issues (the “Opening Brief”), related...more

Proposed Rule Adding Vapor Intrusion Component to Hazard Ranking System Published in the Federal Register Today

Yesterday the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency published a proposed rule in the Federal Register which would add a vapor intrusion component to the Hazard Ranking System, the system EPA uses to evaluate sites for...more

EPA Announces Enforcement Initiatives

After several months, initial publication in the Federal Register, and after receiving comments, the EPA announced seven National Enforcement Initiatives for 2017-2019 on February 18, 2016. Four previous initiatives have...more

Pierce Atwood Environmental Regulatory Compliance Calendar (RCC)

NEW REGULATORY DEVELOPMENTS - Federal - Draft Environmental Assessment, Habitat Conservation Plan, and Application for an Incidental Take Permit for Piping Plover, Massachusetts Division of Fisheries and...more

High Court Grants Stay of Clean Power Plan

On February 9, 2016, in an historic and unprecedented decision, the U.S. Supreme Court blocked the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) from implementing the Clean Power Plan (“CPP”) while the rule is challenged in...more

The Beat Goes On: Pennsylvania Takes Aim at Reducing Methane Emissions from the Oil and Gas Industry

Pennsylvania is currently a hotbed of regulatory initiatives focused on the oil and gas industry. The Environmental Quality Board, for example, will decide on February 3 whether to adopt the Department of Environmental...more

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