Contamination

News & Analysis as of

Emerging Contaminants: PFOA and PFOS

On May 16, 2016, EPA issued final drinking water health advisories for PFOA (perfluorooctanoic acid) and PFOS (perfluorooctane sulfonate ) which set the acceptable life-time level for these chemicals in drinking water at 70...more

China Releases Ambitious Plan to Address Soil Pollution

On 28 May, the State Council, China’s highest administrative body, released the Action Plan on Prevention and Control of Soil Pollution (currently available only in Chinese) to address one of the nation’s most difficult and...more

Wyoming Federal Court Strikes Down BLM Fracking Rule

U.S. District Court Judge Scott Skavdahl in State of Wyoming et al v. U.S. Department if Interior et al. struck down Bureau of Land Management regulations applying to hydraulic fracking on federal and Indian lands. He...more

Murky Waters Following the Gold King Mine Spill

In the wake of actions taken on August 5, 2015 by contractors for the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that resulted in the Gold King Mine Spill, western states that rely on water from the Animas River, the...more

New York Court Holds Pollution Exclusion Applicable to Love Canal Claims

In its recent decision in Cincinnati Insurance Co. v. Roy’s Plumbing, Inc., 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 75958 (W.D.N.Y. June 10, 2016), the United States District Court for the Western District of New York had occasion to consider...more

“All Sums” Claims Another Victory, This Time In New York

In Viking Pump, Inc., et al. v. TIG Insurance Co., et al., 2016 N.Y. LEXIS 1018 (N.Y. May 3, 2016), policyholders scored a victory when New York’s highest court applied “all sums” allocation and vertical exhaustion. The...more

Vermont’s Generalized Injury Claims from MTBE Contamination Time-Barred

On May 27, 2016, Vermont’s Supreme Court, in State of Vermont v. Atlantic Richfield Company, et al., ruled that the State of Vermont’s “generalized injury” claims “to state waters as a whole due to groundwater contamination...more

China Announces Action Plan to Tackle Soil Pollution

On May 31, China’s State Council released a nationwide Action Plan for Soil Pollution Prevention and Control (“Action Plan”). The Action Plan, whose implementation will be led by the Ministry of Environmental Protection...more

Michigan Court Defers to Regulator’s Concurrent Jurisdiction in UST Cleanup

In a decision highlighting a practical challenge in pursuing tort claims against some underground storage tank (“UST”) owners and operators, the Michigan Court of Appeals held that a trial court could nix a lawsuit stemming...more

Tenth Circuit Bars Class Tort Claims for Failing to Plead Injury

Underscoring the importance of pleading actual injury in a toxic tort class action, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit dismissed Oklahoma class claims that were based only on “reasonable concern” of future injury...more

Toxic Tort and Environmental Litigation: Discharger of Petroleum Not Able to Maintain Suit Against Another Discharger (5/16)

Under Navigation Law § 181, a party injured by the intentional or inadvertent discharge of petroleum products may bring a claim for damages against the party responsible for the discharge. But what if the injured party also...more

Safety Troubles in Hospital Compounding Pharmacies

We wrote yesterday about contamination at the pharmacy of the NIH Clinical Center in Bethesda. Other big hospitals, judging by media reports, also may need to look at their pharmacy operations, especially when they compound...more

More Legal Action in the Wake of Flint Water Crisis

We blogged about the Flint water crisis when class action lawsuits were filed earlier this year. The crisis began when Flint switched its water supply from Lake Huron via Detroit’s water system to the Flint River in April...more

Environmental and Energy and Toxic Tort and Environmental Litigation: Do You Operate a Public Water Supply? Why You Need to Know...

Drinking water quality and water contamination are now high-profile topics of concern, with the discovery of unexpected contaminants in "public" water supplies across the country. Providers of "public water" are obligated to...more

Something in the Water: Flint Judge Disqualifies Himself and Staff as Theoretical Plaintiffs

In late April, U.S. District Court Judge Mark A. Goldsmith, in Concerned Pastors for Social Action, et al. v. Nick A. Kouri, et al., FlintRiverissued an interesting Order Regarding Disqualification. During an April 6, 2016...more

North Carolina Court Holds PCB Pollution Not Sudden and Accidental

In its recent decision in PCS Phosphate Co. v. Am. Home Assur. Co., 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 50389 (E.D.N.C. Apr. 14, 2016), the United States District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina had occasion to consider...more

We Are Just Getting Started: EPA Issues Much Anticipated Cleanup Plan for the Lower 8.3 Miles of the Lower Passaic River

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) recently issued the Record of Decision (“ROD”) for the lower 8.3 miles of the Lower Passaic River, which sets forth EPA’s $1.38 billion remedy. Potentially Responsible...more

News from the Vermont State House - An analysis from DRM's Government & Public Affairs Team

PFOA Contamination Likely to Spur Legislative Action - The discovery of Perfluorooctanoic Acid contamination in southern Vermont drinking water has prompted legislators to examine whether more action is necessary to...more

Expect Increased Environmental Regulatory Scrutiny in the Wake of the Flint Water Crisis

The regulated community should plan for an increased level of agency oversight, inspection and enforcement and increased public involvement. Although there has been much finger pointing as to which party or parties may...more

Options to Help Oklahoma Alleviate Its Emerging Oilfield Water Crisis

The Oklahoma Corporation Commission has restricted injection well activity over a combined zone of nearly 10,000 square miles—approximately the size of Massachusetts (Exhibit 1). In Central Oklahoma, the OCC seeks to reduce...more

Tenth Circuit holds that environmental contamination case doesn’t require remand under Class Action Fairness Act’s “local...

Although the Class Action Fairness Act of 2005 (CAFA) permits most significant class actions to be heard in federal court, the law requires district courts to remand so-called “local controversies” to state court. A “local...more

Pennsylvania Jury Awards $4.2 Million in Groundwater Contamination Case

On Thursday, a federal jury in Pennsylvania ordered Cabot Oil & Gas to pay more than $4.2 million in damages to two Pennsylvania families who sued in 2009 alleging that the Texas-based company’s drilling operations...more

EPA and Municipalities Respond to Increased Concerns About Lead in Drinking Water

Since the public discovery of widespread lead contamination of drinking water in Flint, Michigan, there has been increased scrutiny on the status of drinking water regulation and aging water infrastructure. While the crisis...more

Was Flint the Love Canal of our Water System?

Both “hard” and “soft” water can contain minerals that can be slightly corrosive and cause low or high pH resulting in lead in drinking water. Common sources of lead in household drinking water include: Lead Piping and...more

Drinking Water Contamination in Flint and Other Communities Reveals Much More Extensive Problems

Flint, Michigan’s problems with lead in its drinking water have been well documented, and this has prompted reports of similar problems detected in other communities, even though these are apparently not as extensive as the...more

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