Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act

News & Analysis as of

Wrap-Up of Federal and State Chemical Regulatory Developments, September 2016

TSCA/FIFRA/IRIS/NTP/TRI - EPA Extends Comment Period On PIPs: On August 17, 2016, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) extended the comment period on its White Paper describing how EPA intends to modify its...more

CWA: EPA Settlement Telegraphs Changes to General Permit Coverage for Facilities with Coal Tar Sealed Pavement

On August 16, 2016, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) reached a settlement in Clean Water Act (CWA) lawsuits filed over its 2015 Multi-Sector General Permit (MSGP) for Stormwater Discharges from Industrial...more

Stormwater Forecast: Prepare for More Aggressive Benchmark Monitoring and Corrective Action Requirements under the Next Proposed...

EPA is expected to propose a revised system of benchmark monitoring and corrective action requirements to replace those of the current 2015 Multi-Sector General Permit for Stormwater Associated with Industrial Activities...more

Air Dud: Emitters of Hazardous Substances Not Liable Under CERCLA

In a case of first impression, the Ninth Circuit recently ruled that facilities with air emissions that included hazardous substances could not be liable for remediating other properties contaminated by those hazardous...more

Unique Ruling Regarding Joint CERCLA Liability and Government Contracting Law and Practices

Lockheed Martin Corporation, one of the largest defense contractors in the United States, operated three California facilities that manufactured solid-propellant rockets for the United States Department of Defense pursuant to...more

Ninth Circuit Rejects CERCLA Liability for Air Emissions

Do air emissions of hazardous substances create a cleanup liability under the Superfund? In the closely watched case of Pakootas, et al. v. Teck Cominco Metals, Ltd., the Ninth Circuit said, “no,” becoming the highest court...more

Recent Environmental and Administrative Law Decisions by Federal and State Courts

The state and federal appellate courts have issued a surprising number of significant rulings in a variety of environmental and administrative law controversies in late July and early August: - On August 8, the U.S....more

Pierce Atwood Environmental Regulatory Compliance Calendar

Federal - Notice of Availability of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Two Updated Chapters in the EPA Air Pollution Control Cost Manual - EPA is making two finalized chapters of the EPA Air Pollution Control...more

Aerial Emissions Are Not “Disposal” Under CERCLA

Last year, we told you about a district court case in which air emissions from a lead smelter that ultimately settled on the land and in a water body gave rise to liability under the Comprehensive Environmental Response,...more

Toxic Tort and Environmental Litigation: New Hoosick Falls Law: Was it Necessary? (8/16)

On Thursday, July 21, 2016, New York State Governor Andrew Cuomo signed legislation modifying the statute of limitations for personal injury claims arising from exposure to hazardous substances.1 Commonly known as the...more

Lesson of Ninth Circuit CERCLA Decision: Prepare to Prove Recoverable Costs

On June 13, 2016, the Ninth Circuit held that a party which has settled its liability pursuant to a CERCLA section 1071 cost recovery claim may recover any response costs not covered by the settlement under CERCLA section...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - July 2016 #5

Environmental and Policy Focus - State Supreme Court rules in state’s favor on Delta property rights - Sacramento Bee - Jul 21 - The California Supreme Court ruled last Thursday that the state has the right to...more

Environmental Liabilities in Oil & Gas Sales Under Bankruptcy Code Section 363

Since the beginning of 2015, at least 77 companies in the oil and gas industry have sought bankruptcy relief in the United States. The flow of oil and gas company bankruptcies shows no sign of slowing down and, based on the...more

Ninth Circuit Holds Air Emissions Not Covered by CERCLA

Decision finds operator of a lead and zinc smelter not liable as an “arranger” under CERCLA for aerial deposition of heavy metals. On July 27, a panel of the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit unanimously held...more

Clearing the CERCLA Air: Ninth Circuit Holds Air Emissions Are Not Disposal

In a case of first impression, this week, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals held that the owner of a Canadian smelter was not liable as a person who “arranged for disposal” of hazardous substances when it emitted those...more

New Ninth Circuit Decision Precluding CERCLA Liability for Airborne Emissions

Yesterday, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals issued in the long-running Pakootas v. Teck Cominco Metals, Ltd. litigation another important decision further defining the scope of liability under the federal Comprehensive...more

Ninth Circuit Rejects Application of CERCLA to Aerial Emissions

In the long-running saga of efforts by the State of Washington and the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation to attach CERCLA liability to a smelter in British Columbia, the smelter owner, Teck Industries, won a...more

Be Prepared: Civil Penalties to Rise Starting August 1

Effective August 1, OSHA, EPA and the Department of the Interior, among other federal agencies, are raising the ranges of civil penalties assessed under their respective programs. The Federal Civil Penalties Inflation...more

No Deference to State Settlements Under CERCLA? No Problem!

I will confess that I do enjoy being correct. In 2014, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals refused to defer to a state agency determination of the procedural and substantive fairness of a CERCLA consent decree. Various parties...more

Wrap-Up of Federal and State Chemical Regulatory Developments, July 2016

TSCA/FIFRA/IRIS/NTP/TRI - EPA Launches Advisory Panels: On June 15, 2016, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) launched two advisory panels designed to facilitate small businesses to provide feedback to EPA...more

OSHA, EPA and DOI Increase Maximum Civil Penalties

This summer, many federal agencies increased civil monetary penalties as much as 150 percent in response to new legislation mandating that federal agencies "catch up" with inflation and remedy past government failures to...more

EPA Raises Statutory Civil Penalty Amounts

If the cost of doing business includes responding to and resolving periodic environmental and worker safety enforcement matters, the price goes up on August 1. The EPA is raising statutory civil penalty amounts for the many...more

Gasoline with Lead is not Subject to the Petroleum Exemption in Massachusetts Clean-Up Statute Says Top Mass. Court

In a decision that has broad implications, gasoline with additives such as lead is not included in the exemption under the Massachusetts remediation statute, Chapter 21E, for oil releases located in certain drinking water...more

Regulatory Enforcement for Food and Beverage Industry Heats Up

Mid-to-late June 2016, federal and state authorities brought a variety of enforcement actions against food and beverage companies under environmental, health, and safety statutes, suggesting increased governmental oversight...more

Maximum Civil Penalties for Violations of Environmental Statutes are now Significantly Higher After Inflation Adjustment

Seyfarth Synopsis: EPA finalized its new per violation penalty rules that in some cases now increase by substantial amounts. In a federal rulemaking published last week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)...more

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