Environmental Liability

News & Analysis as of

East Hampton Considers New Laws Mandating Nitrogen-Reducing Sanitary Systems and Offering Rebates to Replace Existing Systems

The Town Board of the Town East Hampton (“Town Board”) is considering progressive new legislation that will require advanced nitrogen-reducing sanitary systems for all new commercial and residential construction and major...more

CERCLA’s Statute Of Limitations Doesn’t Preempt State Law Claims Based Largely On Negligence, Nuisance And Trespass

On March 9, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit issued a ruling affirming the District Court’s rejection of Virginia common law property damage claims based largely on negligence, nuisance, trespass, and argument...more

No English jurisdiction over Nigerian oil pollution claims against Shell

In a highly mediatised ruling, the English High Court refused jurisdiction over claims brought against Royal Dutch Shell and its Nigerian subsidiary, Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Ltd, by over 42,000...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

Lawsuit Proceeds Against Monsanto for Manufacture of PCBs

Last year, we told you about a lawsuit brought by three California cities against Monsanto Company, alleging that Monsanto is liable for PCB (polychlorinated biphenyl) contamination in San Francisco Bay. The cities—San Jose,...more

Fourth Circuit Upends NPDES Permit Shield

The United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit recently upheld a lower court’s determination that a West Virginia mining company was not shielded from liability by its NPDES permit. The mining company’s permit...more

What Will 2017 Bring For Manufacturers: Environmental, Health & Safety Edition

This post is the last in our three-part series about what manufacturers can expect in 2017. In my humble opinion, we saved the best for last – Environmental, Health & Safety. Citizen Science - With increasing...more

Transfer Act for Lenders

A previous blog post addressed lender liability for environmental conditions on property a lender might acquire as a result of foreclosure. Another issue lenders in Connecticut must consider prior to foreclosing on a property...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

DOAH Strikes Proposed Rule Requiring Public Notification of "Reportable Releases"

On December 30, the Division of Administrative Hearings (DOAH) entered a final order invalidating the Department of Environmental Protection’s (DEP) proposed rule expanding notification requirements for every release of any...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

Final D.C. Groundwater Well Requirements Will Impact Many Property Owners

The District of Columbia Department of Energy and Environment (DOEE) on Oct. 28, 2016, published final rules governing the construction, maintenance and abandonment of wells. The new regulations became effective immediately...more

Just Compensation for Contaminated Land

When a government agency or private party involuntarily takes your property (a proceeding called eminent domain or condemnation), you are entitled to receive "just compensation" for the property. In North Carolina, "just...more

Protecting Lenders from Environmental Liability for Foreclosed Properties

Readers may recall an earlier blog post regarding a bank’s potential liability for damage to private property caused by a tree falling onto a neighbor’s property. In addition to property damage from obvious unsafe...more

Due Process Required for Environmental Remedy Selection: Appellate Division Rules NYSDEC Must Afford Responsible Parties an...

Hodgson Russ LLP and Greenberg Traurig LLP successfully challenged the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s (NYSDEC) ability to implement a remedy without first providing a party an opportunity for a...more

Montana Court Enforces Oil and Gas Exploration Exclusion

In its recent decision in Palmer v. Northland Cas. Co., 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 138556 (D. Mont. Oct. 5, 2016), the United States District Court for the District of Montana had occasion to consider the application of an oil and...more

Nuclear Liability in the UK: Implementation of the 2004 Protocols

On May 4, 2016, the Nuclear Installations (Liability for Damage) Order 2016 (the “2016 Order”) entered into force in the United Kingdom. The 2016 Order, which implements the 2004 Protocols1 to the Paris Convention and...more

New Jersey Court Confirms a PRP Letter Constitutes a “Suit” Triggering an Insurer’s Duty to Defend

A New Jersey Superior Court recently put to rest a tenuous coverage defense to which insurers stubbornly have clung in environmental coverage cases. The court held in Cooper Industries, LLC v. Employers Ins. of Wausau a...more

Court Dismisses Public Nuisance Claims Against Monsanto for Manufacture of PCBs

Last week, a federal court dismissed claims brought by three California cities against Monsanto that were aimed at forcing Monsanto to pay for polychlorinated biphenyl (“PCB”) contamination in San Francisco Bay. The...more

Significant Changes to Washington State’s Voluntary Cleanup Program

The Washington State Department of Ecology (Ecology) recently rolled out significant changes to its Voluntary Cleanup Program (VCP). The VCP covers the largest number of cleanup sites in Washington and is a key part of many...more

Foreclosing Residential Lenders Ignore Environmental Issues at Their Own Risk

Several years ago, we assisted a lender who foreclosed on rural residential property and then discovered that vandals had removed metal pipes from the basement of the house. That was bad enough, but the removed piping had...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

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

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

Safety, Health and Environment Matters - Spring/Summer 2016

Following the outcome of a so-called Brexit referendum it is clear that a significant period of uncertainty will follow while this country works out its new trading arrangements with fellow European countries and the rest of...more

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