Hazardous Substances

News & Analysis as of

September 2015: Product Liability Litigation Update

Ninth Circuit Restricts Scope of CAFA’s “Local Single Event” Exception. In Allen v. Boeing Co., 784 F.3d 625 (9th Cir. 2015), the Ninth Circuit recently held that a case did not fall within the Class Action Fairness Act’s...more

Better Late Than Never: The California Supreme Court Reverses Itself, Holding That Corporate Policyholders May Assign Insurance...

Asset purchase and sale transactions are a preferred structure for many corporate deals. For a variety of reasons, it may be prudent for businesses or product lines to be transferred through these transactions, and an asset...more

EPA Poised to Elevate Clean Air Act 112(r) Enforcement

Overview - In the wake of the United States Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) recent $5.6 million settlement with Bayer CropScience under Clean Air Act Section 112(r), companies should expect more from EPA in the...more

New Jersey’s Appellate Division Holds State May Be Liable for Cleanup Costs under New Jersey’s Spill Act

Action Item: On August 26, 2015, in a case of first impression, the Appellate Division of the New Jersey Superior Court in NL Indus., Inc. v. State of New Jersey, No. A0869-14T3, 2015 N.J. Super. LEXIS 161 (N.J. Super. Ct....more

Cancel My Reservation! Pennsylvania Sows Confusion Over Consent-to-Settle Clauses

This summer, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania addressed an important question that has divided other courts: if an insurer defends a claim subject to a reservation of rights, may the insured settle the claim without the...more

Long-awaited overhaul of FDA food safety rules arrives – Part I: Introducing HARPC, changes to cGMP

Since the passage of the Food Safety Modernization Act in 2011, the FDA has promulgated proposed rules that overhaul the old Good Manufacturing Practice (cGMP) rule and create new Hazard Analysis and Risk-Based Preventative...more

Miners and States take Notice, the EPA is Updating its CERCLA Financial Responsibility Requirements

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) has recently announced that it would take steps to finalize rules establishing financial responsibility requirements for hard rock mines under section 108(b) of the...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - September 2015 #2

Environmental and Policy Focus - Gov. Brown and Democratic legislators drop plan for 50 percent cut in petroleum use in state: New York Times - Sep 9 - Gov. Jerry Brown and Senate Democrats abandoned a proposal for a 50...more

European Court rules on controversial REACH ‘substances in articles’ case, extending aspects of EU chemical law compliance to the...

In what is a salutary reminder that published European Chemicals Agency (“ECHA”) guidance cannot necessarily always be relied upon to provide an authoritative interpretation of the requirements of the EU’s REACH chemicals...more

EPA Proposes New Standards for Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its proposed Management Standards for Hazardous Waste Pharmaceuticals Rule. If finalized, it will create an entirely new subpart in the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act...more

Emerging Trends in Tort Litigation Alleging Health Injuries Caused by Neighboring Oil and Gas Activities

Last year's $2.9 million verdict in Parr v. Aruba Petroleum, the so-called "first fracking trial," garnered attention in Texas and beyond. The significance laid not only in that the plaintiffs had succeeded on their private...more

You Really Need to be Keeping Up With Developments With the NFPA Combustible Dust Standards

My friend and outstanding combustible dust (and more) expert Tim Myers of Exponent shared the following: The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) is set to publish the first edition of NFPA 652 Standard on...more

Major Pipeline Safety Rulemakings Coming in 2015

Authorization of the federal pipeline safety programs will expire on September 30th of this year. With this looming deadline, the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) is scrambling to finish the 42...more

EPA Issues Final Amendments to Cement Kiln NESHAP

Effective July 27, 2015, EPA amended key components of the National Emission Standard for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) for new and existing portland cement kilns. The changes, in part, were necessary to comply with a...more

Supreme Court Tells EPA Cost Does Matter

The Environmental Protection Agency's Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS) placed national limits on mercury and other toxic emissions from power plants. The agency projected MATS to prevent 11,000 premature deaths, 4,700...more

FRA Issues New Hazmat Train Securement Rule and Sunsets Emergency Order 28

The Federal Railroad Administration ("FRA") has issued new train securement rules for trains left unattended on a mainline, siding, or rail yard carrying 20 or more crude or ethanol cars or trains carrying poison by...more

RMP and General Duty Clause Enforcement Continues at EPA Region 1

As we reported last year, the U.S. EPA has stepped up its enforcement activity under the risk management provisions of the Clean Air Act (“CAA”), Section 112(r), focusing on both the Risk Management Plan (“RMP”) program rules...more

Ninth Circuit Interprets CAFA Exception Narrowly, Facilitating Removal in Environmental Tort Cases

Creating a Circuit split, the Ninth Circuit held that a tort case against a Washington corporation did not fall under the so-called “local event” exception to the Class Action Fairness Act (“CAFA”) and, therefore, had been...more

A little good news: OSHA Grants Some Reprieve For Compliance with Its New Construction Industry Confined Space Rules

On May 4, 2015, OSHA issued a final rule setting new standards for workers in confined spaces on construction sites. The new rule requires coordination for multiple employers at the worksite, a competent person to evaluate...more

Canada Begins Mandatory Survey with Respect to Certain Nanomaterials in Canadian Commerce

The July 25, 2015, Canada Gazette includes a notice announcing that the Minister of the Environment requires, for the purpose of assessing whether the substances described in the notice are toxic or are capable of becoming...more

HCS: OSHA Issues Inspection Procedures for Hazard Communication Standard (HCS 2012)

On July 20, 2015, the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) issued OSHA Directive Number CPL 02-02-079. The Directive is intended to establish "policies and procedures to ensure...more

OSHA Directive on Inspection Procedures for the Hazard Communication Standard

OSHA has just announced a compliance Directive on “Inspection Procedures for the Hazard Communication Standard,” CPL 02-02-079 (July 9, 2015)....more

OSHA Enforcement Memo and Interim Policy on the Process Safety Management Retail Exemption

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration issued yesterday an enforcement memo (Memo) and an interim policy (Policy) on the PSM retail exemption. Tho Memo revised OSHA’s interpretation of the exemption of retail...more

Airplane cabin cleaners often exposed to dangerous substances

According to the Federal Aviation Administration, more than 85,000 flights take off and land in America every day. Commercial airplanes often fly multiple times per day, carrying many loads of passengers. Like hotel rooms,...more

Major Expansion of EPA Rules for Underground Storage Tanks

On July 15, 2015, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published a final rule significantly expanding its program for underground storage tank (UST) systems that store petroleum or hazardous substances....more

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