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Environmental Updates

Read need-to-know updates, commentary, and analysis on Environmental issues written by leading professionals.

Ninth Circuit Rejects Challenges to Arizona Highway Project

by Nossaman LLP on

On December 8, 2017, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals unanimously rejected two challenges to the 20-mile South Mountain Freeway Project in Phoenix, Arizona. The decision is the latest in a series of court decisions...more

First Amendment Rights of California Public Agencies Affirmed by Appellate Court - Anti-SLAPP Motion Successful in Dispute

by Best Best & Krieger LLP on

A court of appeal dismissed a challenge to a county’s characterization of stored chemicals as hazardous waste, holding that by making that determination and forwarding it to the district attorney, the county had engaged in...more

New Amendments to Proposition 65 Provide Clarity and Guidance to Clear and Reasonable Warning Requirements

by Reed Smith on

The California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (“OEHHA”) announced the approval of new amendments to regulations implementing the Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986, more commonly known as...more

Latin American Environmental Regulatory Tracker

by Beveridge & Diamond PC on

This month’s tracker reflects key initiatives from October 16, 2017 – November 15, 2017. This month brings us a heavy environmental regulatory agenda in Latin America. Brazil aimed to close loopholes on take-back...more

ISO Publishes Standard on Aquatic Toxicity Assessment of Manufactured Nanomaterials in Saltwater Lakes

by Bergeson & Campbell, P.C. on

In November 2017, the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) published standard ISO/TS 20787:2017, “Nanotechnologies — Aquatic toxicity assessment of manufactured nanomaterials in saltwater lakes using Artemia...more

EPA Enforcement Is Down During First Nine Months Under Scott Pruitt

by Freeborn & Peters LLP on

The New York Times published a report over the weekend detailing a fall-off in the EPA’s enforcement activities during Scott Pruitt’s tenure as EPA Administrator.  The changes are driven by top down directives from Washington...more

Alberta Unveils Changes to Its Credit and Offset Regime: What’s in Store for Large Industrial Emitters

On December 6, 2017, the Government of Alberta released guidance documents regarding the new Carbon Competitiveness Incentives (CCI) Regulation, which will come into force on January 1, 2018 and replace the existing Specified...more

E-Manifests Are Coming in 2018: Will You Be Ready?

by Freeborn & Peters LLP on

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) e-Manifest system is anticipated to officially launch in June 2018. The e-Manifest is a nationwide system for tracking hazardous waste shipments electronically and will...more

House and Senate Tax Bills Target Renewable Energy Projects

by Holland & Knight LLP on

The U.S. Senate passed its version of a bill to overhaul the U.S. tax code on Dec. 2, 2017, and is now working with the House of Representatives to reconcile its bill with the House's version, passed in November. The goal of...more

Battery Development in the Auto Industry Leads to Electrification of Ships and Planes

by Foley & Lardner LLP on

With the release of the new Tesla semi-truck in November, the public’s attention was captured with the idea of emission-free movement of freight. In the United States, over 70% of freight is carried at some point by truck,...more

CERCLA/Superfund: U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Announces 21 Sites Targeted for "Immediate/Intense Action"

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) issued a December 8th news release identifying 21 sites that it has targeted for what it describes as “immediate and intense action.” No Arkansas sites are found on...more

Air Enforcement: Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality and Pulaski County, Arkansas Plastic Piping Systems Manufacturer...

The Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality (“ADEQ”) and Tubo-FGS, L.L.C., d/b/a Fiber Glass Systems (“Tubo”) entered into a November 15th Consent Administrative Order (“CAO”) addressing alleged violations of an air...more

Floodplains and Flood Risk: A Brief Overview of Changing Management Responsibilities

by Downey Brand LLP on

When it comes to how our communities address flood risk and protect populations and economies from flooding, no one government agency is in charge. Instead, there are multiple agencies at the federal, state, and local levels,...more

Covenant Not to Compete/Landfill Gas Services: Federal Court Addresses Request for Preliminary Injunction

Like many service industries, conflicts sometimes arise between competitors in the environmental service industry segments. A federal district court, Western District, North Carolina (“Court”) addressed in a September 29th...more

EPA Will NOT Second-Guess Generators’ Projections of Future Emissions Under the NSR Program

I’ve noted numerous times that the NSR program is incomprehensible gibberish. These are scientific and objective comments. The most recent example of this is the DTE litigation, in which a one-judge minority somehow ended...more

CEQA Remedies Statute Authorizes Writ Partially Decertifying EIR and Leaving Project Approvals In Place

by Miller Starr Regalia on

In a partially published opinion filed December 4, 2017, the Second District Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court’s post-remand judgment and held that CEQA’s remedies statute – Public Resources Code § 21168.9 – allows a...more

Trump Track: Polluters Play?

by Davis Wright Tremaine LLP on

On December 11, 2017, the NY Times’ headline read: Under Trump, E.P.A. Has Slowed Actions Against Polluters, and Put Limits on Enforcement Officers. The article reviews EPA enforcement during the first nine months of the...more

Hazardous Waste Enforcement: Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality and Hot Springs, Arkansas Boat Manufacturing Facility...

The Arkansas Department of Environmental Quality (“ADEQ”) and Aluma-Weld, Inc. (“AWI”) entered a Consent Administrative Order addressing alleged violations of Arkansas Pollution Control and Ecology Commission (“APC&EC”)...more

Renewable Energy Update - December 2017

by Allen Matkins on

PG&E goes for 165MW of energy storage towards 2024 mandate - Energy Storage News - Dec 6 Investor-owned utility Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) has furthered its commitment towards the state’s mandated target for energy...more

Western Governors Determined To Strengthen Relationships Under Trump Administration

by Snell & Wilmer on

The Western Governors’ Association (“WGA”) convened for its 2017 Winter Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona on December 1-2 to discuss western policy and announce its Policy Resolutions for 2018. While discussions focused on...more

Waters of the United States/Clean Water Act: Association of State Wetland Managers Comments on Jurisdictional Definition

The Association of State Wetland Managers (“ASWM”) submitted November 28th comments on the Clean Water Act definition of “waters of the United States” (“WOTUS”). The November 28th comments were submitted in response to the...more

Bonn Climate Talks Discuss Litigation Trend Linking Climate Change and Human Rights

by King & Spalding on

Climate change has been in the news recently in the wake of the Bonn Climate Talks, which took place between November 6 and 17, 2017. One key take away from the Talks: energy companies must seriously consider potential...more

Congressional Review Act: Allan Gates (Mitchell Williams Law Firm) American College of Environmental Lawyers Blog Post

My law firm partner, Allan Gates, authored a December 7th post on the American College of Environmental Lawyers (“ACOEL”) blog titled: It Ain’t Over ‘til It’s Over - - The Congressional Review Act & the Search for Zombie...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - December 2017 #2

by Allen Matkins on

Lawsuit challenges President’s authority to shrink Bears Ears National Monument - The Salt Lake Tribune - Dec 7 A coalition of American Indian tribes, recreation interests including the outdoor clothing manufacturer...more

Attention NSR Geeks: EPA Clarifies Applicability Approach

by Stoel Rives LLP on

On December 7, 2017, EPA administrator Scott Pruitt announced an approach to New Source Review (NSR) applicability that supports presidential priorities for streamlining permit requirements: “New Source Review Preconstruction...more

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