News & Analysis as of

Eight Is Not Enough: CEQA Challenge To Eighth Addendum To San Jose International Airport Master Plan EIR Is Rejected By Sixth...

In a decision filed June 6, but not certified for publication until July 2, 2014, the Sixth District Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court’s judgment upholding the City of San Jose’s eighth addendum to its Airport Master...more

California Environmental Law and Policy Update - June 2014 #3

Environmental and Policy Focus: Long-term money a big boost for California's high-speed rail - Contra Costa Times - Jun 17: Gov. Jerry Brown scored a win for California's $68 billion high-speed rail project by...more

Is A 16% Reduction in GHG Emissions From "Business-As-Usual" Enough Under CEQA?

Our previous post on the Second District Court of Appeal’s decision in Center for Biological Diversity v. Department of Fish & Wildlife, No. B245141 (Mar. 20, 2014), highlighted the court’s holdings on California...more

Second District Addresses Interesting CEQA and CESA Species Mitigation Issues in Lengthy Partially Published Opinion Upholding...

In a lengthy, mostly published opinion filed on March 20, 2014, the Second District Court of Appeal reversed the trial court’s judgment granting a writ of mandate, and upheld – as against state law challenges brought by a...more

Court of Appeal Confirms AB 32 Target Is Proper CEQA Significance Threshold

The strongly worded opinion in Center for Biological Diversity v. California Department of Fish and Wildlife (Case Number B245131)(CBD v. CDFW) by the Court of Appeal of California, Second Appellate District has confirmed...more

Recent CEQA Developments In The Legislature And Courts

As we move past summer, into fall, the “back-to-school,” and football seasons, and toward daylight savings time – and a possible shutdown of the federal government – it is time to reflect and take stock of the really...more

Environmental Impact Report Must Compare Existing Greenhouse Gas Emissions to Those of the Proposed Project

A city approved relocation and expansion of an existing Wal-Mart into a 24-hour Wal-Mart Supercenter. Opponents of the expansion sued, claiming the project approval violated the California Environmental Quality Act (“CEQA”)...more

California Supreme Court Update: Air Quality Emissions Reduction Credits May Be Considered in Assessing Unit Value of Power Plant,...

A power plant operator was required to purchase emission reduction credits (“ERCs”) to comply with the permitting process to build a power plant. Over the course of several years, the State Board of Equalization (“Board”)...more

Third District Holds CEQA Analysis of GHG Emissions Was Inadequately Quantified To Support EIR’s Mitigation Conclusion in Friends...

In a partially published opinion filed August 19, 2013, the Third District Court of Appeal reversed a judgment denying a writ petition challenging a Wal-Mart Supercenter that would replace an existing Wal-Mart store....more

Appellate Court Requires Calculation of Current Emissions in GHG Analysis Under CEQA

In Friends of Oroville, et al. v. City of Oroville, et al. (“Friends of Oroville”) (filed and published in part on August 19, 2013), the Third District Court of Appeal partially reversed the trial court in finding that the...more

They’re Back? First District Court of Appeal Paves the Way for Possible Reinstatement of Controversial Air Quality Thresholds

California’s First District Court of Appeal issued a decision on August 13 in California Building Industry Association v. Bay Area Air Quality Management District (“CBIA”) (Case No. A135335 (Cal. Ct. App. 1st, August 13,...more

Appellate Court Finds BAAQMD CEQA Significance Thresholds Did Not Violate CEQA

Greenhouse Gas and Toxic Air Contaminant CEQA Thresholds May Soon Be Reinstated - In California Building Industry Association v. Bay Area Air Quality Management District (filed August 13, 2013) (“CBIA”) , the First...more

Bay Area Air District’s Significance Thresholds Reinstated: No CEQA Review for CEQA Review Thresholds

A new appellate decision reinstates the Bay Area Air Quality Management District’s controversial “significance thresholds” for evaluating air quality impacts under the California Environmental Quality Act. ...more

Court of Appeal Rules Setting Thresholds is Not a "Project" Under CEQA - Air District’s CEQA Thresholds for Greenhouse Gases...

Yesterday, the Court of Appeal for the First District issued its ruling in California Building Industry Association v. Bay Area Air Quality Management District. In a win for public agencies, the court held that establishing...more

Court of Appeal Reinstates Regional Air Quality Thresholds for Greenhouse Gas Emissions

On August 13, 2013, the First District Court of Appeal reinstated controversial air quality guidelines adopted by the Bay Area Air Quality Management District (the District), including numeric greenhouse gas (GHG) thresholds...more

CEQA Review Of Regulatory Program Must be Completed Before Approval Of Regulations

A state agency’s board approved new environmental regulations on fuels contributing to greenhouse gas emissions and at the same time delegated completion of environmental review and response to public comments to the agency’s...more

CARB Violated CEQA In Adopting GHG Regulations, But Fifth District Holds Regulations May Remain Operative Pending Compliance

In a mostly-published 95-page opinion filed July 15, 2013, the Fifth District Court of Appeal reversed a trial court’s judgment and directed issuance of a writ of mandate setting aside Resolution 09-31 and two executive...more

California Appeals Court: Air Resources Board Low Carbon Fuel Standards Regulations Violate CEQA

In Poet, LLC et al. v. California Air Resources Board et al., the Fifth Appellate District held the Air Resources Board (“ARB”) violated CEQA and the APA with its approval of the Low Carbon Fuel Standards (“LCFS”)...more

Court of Appeal Reverses Trial Court’s Disapproval Of Environmental Impact Report For Seawater Desalination Plant

A municipal water district proposed a project to build a seawater desalination plant to avoid predicted future water supply shortages. After the water district certified an environmental impact report (“EIR”) for the...more

California Environmental Law and Policy Update - April 25, 2013

Environmental and Policy Focus - ..Bills to create CEQA courts hinge on funding question: California lawmakers are considering legislation that would assign specialized judges to hear California Environmental...more

Residential Project Exempt From CEQA Review Under Government Code Section 65457 As Consistent With Specific Plan For Which Program...

In a recently published opinion construing Government Code § 65457’s exemption from environmental review for a residential development consistent with a specific plan for which an EIR was previously certified, the First...more

Certain Residential Developments Exempt from CEQA Review: Greenhouse Gas Emission Issues Do Not Constitute New Information

The recent California appellate court decision in Concerned Dublin Citizens v. City of Dublin, Cal: Court of Appeal, 1st Appellate Dist., 3rd Div. 2013, upheld a City's affirmation that residential developments are exempt...more

Court Upholds CEQA Exemption for Residential Development - Minor Project Tweaks and New Greenhouse Gas Thresholds Don’t Trigger...

In a recent case involving the California Environmental Quality Act, a state appellate court upheld a city’s decision to exempt from environmental review a residential development because it was consistent with a broader...more

New Significance Standard For Greenhouse Gas Emissions Is Not New Information Triggering Supplemental CEQA Review

In an opinion published on March 28, 2013, a California court of appeal answered three questions under the California Environmental Quality Act that the published decisions have not yet addressed...more

CEQA Year In Review 2012

In This Issue: - Project Approvals Triggering CEQA ..Chung v City of Monterey Park (2012) 210 CA4th 394 ..Tuolumne Jobs and Small Business Alliance v Superior Court) 210 CA4th 1006 (petition for review pending,...more

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