Environmental Protection Agency Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is an agency of the United States federal government established in 1970 at the proposal of President Richard Nixon to combat environmental degradation and protect human... more +
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is an agency of the United States federal government established in 1970 at the proposal of President Richard Nixon to combat environmental degradation and protect human health. As part of its mission, the EPA enforces regulations affecting a variety of environmental issues, including air and water quality, pesticide-use, fuel economy standards, and nuclear contamination.  less -
News & Analysis as of

An Air of Change in CERCLA Liability? Pakootas v. Teck Cominco and CERCLA’s Federal Permit Shield

A case recently argued before the Ninth Circuit, Pakootas v. Teck Cominco Metals, Ltd., 9th Cir., No. 15-35228, could pave the way for a new theory of liability for parties who release air emissions during the course of...more

Insurers Take Notice: Ninth Circuit Rules that EPA Request Letter Triggers Duty to Defend

On May 11, 2016, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that a general liability insurer owed a duty to defend an environmental matter even though no suit had technically been filed. Ash Grove Cement Co v. Liberty Mutual...more

EPA Proposes to Amend the Site Remediation NESHAP to Remove the Exemption for Site Remediation Activities Performed under CERCLA...

On May 13, 2016, EPA proposed to amend several provisions of the National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAPs): Site Remediation. The Site Remediation Rule currently exempts from hazardous air pollutant...more

More Than Chickens, Lizards and Polar Bears – Environmental Case Law Update (Dec. 2015 – Mar. 2016)

This blog, although not brief, is a brief report on some of the significant environmental law and administrative cases decided in late December and the first quarter of 2016. U.S. SUPREME COURT - FERC Final Rule re...more

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

EPA Issues SNUR For TCE: On April 8, 2016, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a final Significant New Use Rule (SNUR) under the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) for trichloroethylene (TCE). 81 Fed. Reg....more

Williams Mullen Construction Industry Newsletter - Spring 2016

2016 begins with the issuance of this Construction Industry Newsletter, our fifth. In this issue, we have articles on vapor intrusion, liability for project design, enforcement of mechanic’s lien and bond waiver clauses, and...more

Environmental Notes - March 2016

U.S. Supreme Court to Decide Whether Jurisdictional Determinations May be Appealed - The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers determines the presence or absence of wetlands and other “waters of the United States” on a...more

EPA Seeks to Add Subsurface Intrusion to CERCLA Hazard Ranking System

The National Priorities List (“NPL”) is EPA’s list of the most contaminated sites in the country that warrant cleanup under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act of 1980, (“CERCLA” a/k/a...more

Environmental Notes - February 2016

The U.S. Supreme Court has blocked implementation of President Obama’s signature plan to address climate change pending a decision by the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals on the plan’s legality. The Clean Power Plan is being...more

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

NAS Hosts Workshop On Low Dose Toxicity: On February 3, 2016, the National Academies of Sciences (NAS), Engineering, and Medicine Low Dose Committee heard presentations on several chemicals and the potential effect each may...more

Stop the Presses. Superfund is Stupid.

I know that pointing out CERCLA’s stupidity has something of a dog bites man quality, but sometimes Superfund’s stupidity bears repeating. Today’s exhibit? New York v. Next Millenium Realty, in which Judge Feuerstein held –...more

Proposed Rule Adding Vapor Intrusion Component to Hazard Ranking System Will Likely Appear in Federal Register This Month

A proposed rule that would add a vapor intrusion component to the Hazard Ranking System (“HRS”), the primary screening tool for the CERCLA National Priorities List (“NPL”), is scheduled for publication in the Federal...more

Financial Assurance Requirements are on the Horizon for Hard Rock Miners

On January 29, 2016, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit ordered the Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) to finalize the long-awaited “financial assurance” regulations under section 108(b) of...more

Environment 2016: Waste Management and Contamination Issues

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized and proposed a number of rules and guidance in 2015 - changes the regulated community will need to monitor closely in 2016, including how many states may implement...more

Environmental, Health & Safety – What to Watch in 2016

To round out our series on industry and legal outlooks for 2016, I have compiled some of the many things for manufacturers to be aware of in the Environmental Health & Safety world for 2016....more

Environmental Notes - January 2016

Dominion Virginia Power (Dominion) operates a coalfired power plant in Chesapeake, Virginia. It maintains permits for its operations, including a Virginia solid waste management permit and a Virginia Pollutant Discharge...more

How Should You Respond to EPA Information Requests? Very Carefully.

You're looking through your mail one morning when you see it: a certified letter from EPA. The letter requests information about your company's operations over the last 20 years. It includes paragraph-after-paragraph of...more

EPA Opens Door to Electronic Audit Policy Self-Disclosures

Last month, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) launched its new eDisclosure Portal for electronic self-disclosures of violations made under the Audit Policy and the Small Business Compliance Policy...more

EPA Launches eDisclosure Portal to Modernize Self-Reporting

Under EPA’s long-standing Audit Policy and Small Business Compliance Policy, companies that discover, disclose, and correct environmental violations may be entitled to penalty mitigation and other benefits. On December 9,...more

EPA Launches Modernized eDisclosure Portal for Self-Disclosed Civil Violations

On December 9, 2015, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published a Federal Register Notice announcing the launch of the eDisclosure portal, a centralized web-based system for receiving and automatically...more

Wrap-Up of Federal and State Chemical Regulatory Developments, December 2015.

EPA Issues Final Rule Adding 1-Bromopropane To EPCRA Section 313 List: On November 23, 2015, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a final rule adding 1-bromopropane to the list of toxic chemicals subject to...more

EPA Modernizes the Audit Policy

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is modernizing its self-disclosure policy, commonly known as the Audit Policy, through a centralized “eDisclosure Portal” to receive and automatically process self-disclosed civil...more

Determining An Intent To Dispose Under CERCLA Remains a Puzzlement

Determining when a person has “arranged” for the disposal of a hazardous substance has long been difficult. The Supreme Court brought some clarity to the issue in Burlington Northern, when it said that...more

CERCLA Divisibility: Two Strikes and Bases are Loaded

Joint and several liability means one defendant can be liable for all of the damages in a case, even where other defendants are at fault. In the CERCLA arena, this means a potentially responsible party can be forced to pay...more

Environmental Notes - October 2015

In a significant setback for the Obama Administration, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit has temporarily blocked implementation of the Clean Water Rule issued jointly by EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers...more

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