Hazardous Substances

News & Analysis as of

“Oh The Times . . . They are A-Changing:” EPA & DOJ Follow Through on Worker Endangerment Initiative

On October 12, 2016, the U.S. Department of Justice (“DOJ”) announced that four Texas companies agreed to plead guilty to criminal violations of the Clean Air Act at oil and chemical processing facilities, and to collectively...more

Hot Pocket: Samsung Galaxy Note 7 Recall Highlights Risk of Lithium Batteries During Air Transportation

Air transportation of lithium ion batteries recently garnered significant attention due to events following reports of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7’s batteries overheating, catching fire, and even exploding. See Samsung Recalls...more

State Administration of Work Safety Drafting New Chemical Safety Law in Wake of Tianjin Explosions

The State Administration of Work Safety is currently working with the Ministry of Environment to draft a new chemical safety law in response to the Tianjin explosion. The law, currently referred to as the Toxic and Hazardous...more

Should You Litigate In Court or Arbitrate the Dispute?

Faced with the rising costs of doing business in our increasingly litigious society, today's employers are looking at any way to manage fees and costs associated with resolving disputes over employment decisions. Some of the...more

Pipeline Safety: PHMSA Releases New Rule on Emergency Authority

On Monday, October 3, 2016, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) released an interim final rule (IFR) establishing procedures to implement new imminent hazard authority created by the PIPES Act...more

PHMSA Implements Authority to Issue Emergency Orders

Interim Final Rule allows the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) to respond immediately to unsafe conditions or practices that pose an imminent hazard to public health and safety or to the...more

Workplace Policy Institute Insider Report - October 2016

Littler's Workplace Policy Institute Insider Report details key labor, employment, and benefits news and events at the federal, state, local, and global levels. The October edition of the Insider Report examines what Congress...more

Worker entitled to asbestos records for government building he worked in, but not list of employees in building

A worker was entitled to asbestos records for the government building he worked in. However, he was not entitled to a list of government employees who worked in the building and therefore who may have been exposed to...more

Florida Department of Environmental Protection Adopts Emergency Rule Imposing New Notice Requirements

In response to the storm-related sewage and sinkhole-related discharges at the Mosaic facility in Mulberry, Florida, the Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) published two rulemaking notices on September 27, both...more

California Prevailing Wage Law Expanded to Cover Private Projects

PREVAILING WAGE LAW is California's "other" minimum wage. It requires workers to be paid union wages on publicly funded construction projects. But in recent years, the law in California has EXPANDED well beyond its initial...more

"Take-Home" Asbestos Case Decision Could have Ripple Effect

Companies facing "take-home" asbestos or other toxic tort exposure claims in Arizona, or in other jurisdictions applying Arizona law, now have a new case to cite in dispositive motions. With the Sept. 20 Arizona Court of...more

Regulated Industry Successfully Challenges New OSHA Process Safety Management Enforcement Policies

On September 23, 2016, the D.C. Court of Appeals ruled that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) wrongfully adopted new safety requirements for fertilizer dealers who have to comply with the Process Safety...more

DOT/PHMSA Proposes to Harmonize U.S. Lithium Battery Transport Requirements With International Standards

The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration issued a proposed rule that would harmonize U.S. hazardous materials regulations with international hazardous materials transport...more

September 2016 Update on Significant DOT, FAA and Other Federal Agencies’ Aviation-Related Regulatory Actions

This edition of the Cozen O’Connor Aviation Regulatory Update discusses DOT’s selection of carriers to operate U.S.-Havana and U.S.-Tokyo (Haneda) air services, the FAA’s implementation of its small unmanned aircraft...more

Canada Consultation on Prioritization for Nanoscale Forms of DSL Substances

A consultation period for a proposed prioritization approach for nanoscale forms of Domestic Substance List (DSL) substances was initiated by Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) and Health Canada (HC) on July 27,...more

OSHA’s Final Rule on Crystalline Silica Standards

Earlier this year, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) published its long-awaited final rule (https://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2016-03-25/pdf/2016-04800.pdf) setting new workplace permissible exposure...more

Ban on Plastic Microbeads in UK’s future?

Members of Parliament are calling for a ban on plastic microbeads, preferably at the EU level, but if not, then nationally. Plastic microbeads found in cosmetic products such as face rinses and toothpaste, end up polluting...more

Singapore Publishes RoHS-Like Amendments to its Environmental Protection and Management Act

The Ministry of the Environment and Water Resources has published amendments to the Environmental Protection and Management Act, broadening its control of hazardous substances by adding Restrictions on Hazardous Substances...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

I-Spy in the Sky. Feds Enact Drone Regulations

This week, the Federal Aviation Administration (“FAA”) enacted regulations for routine non-recreational use of small Unmanned Aircraft Systems weighing less than 55 pounds or “drone” laws (Part 7 of Federal Aviation...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

All or Nothing: Regulators Strictly Define Pipeline Abandonment

On August 16th, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (“PHMSA”) issued an advisory bulletin to clarify the regulatory requirements that may vary depending on the operational status of a pipeline under 49...more

D.C. Circuit Upholds Boiler MACT

If there’s any good news for industry in the recent 162-page decision issued by the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit on the Boiler MACT, we can’t find it. The court rejected all challenges by industry...more

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