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Maritime Environmental

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

Don’t Fall Asleep at the Helm- 5th Circuit Goes Broad on OPA Interpretation

by Baker Donelson on

In two issues of first impression, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals read the complete defense provisions for oil spills under the Oil Pollution Act (“OPA”) to strictly construe the defenses and make them only very narrowly...more

U.S. Fifth Circuit Affirms $20 Million Judgment Against Barge Owner as Responsible Party Under the Oil Pollution Act of 1990

by Liskow & Lewis on

In July of 2008, nearly 300,000 gallons of oil spilled into the Mississippi River in New Orleans when a tugboat towing an oil-filled barge veered across the river into the path of an ocean-going tanker. American Commercial...more

Hurricane Waivers and Infrastructure Funding [Maritime and Infrastructure Federal Update]

by Cozen O'Connor on

This edition of the Cozen O’Connor Maritime and Infrastructure Federal Update highlights: (i) the unprecedented nature of the recent Jones Act waiver, (ii) available infrastructure funding through the TIGER program, (iii)...more

U.S. Dodges OPA Claim But Must Defend Against Insurer’s Negligence Claims

On September 15, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the First Circuit released a significant Oil Pollution Act (OPA) ruling. The case is Ironshore Specialty Insurance Company v. U.S., et al. The Court of Appeals affirmed the...more

Fifth Circuit: Responsible Party Has Right to Recover Contribution from Others at Fault in Oil Spills

by Holland & Knight LLP on

In a recent ruling dated June 9, 2017, In re: Complaint of Settoon Towing LLC, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit interpreted the statutory language of the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (OPA) to grant the responsible...more

Proposed Oil Tanker Moratorium Act—Defining Canada's Pacific Gateway

by Bennett Jones LLP on

On 12 May 2017, the Government of Canada introduced Bill C-48, the proposed Oil Tanker Moratorium Act, in Parliament. This initiative follows up on the launch of the national Oceans Protection Plan in November 2016, and...more

Hydrocarbons Win One and Lose One in Battles With Crawfish

by Gray Reed & McGraw on

In re: Louisiana Crawfish Producers arises out of the collision between two of Louisiana’s favored enterprises: crawfish and hydrocarbons....more

EU Threatens to Bring Shipping Within Its Emissions Trading Scheme Unless the IMO Sets a Target for Reduction of Greenhouse Gas...

by Reed Smith on

Last week the top EU climate official, Jos Delbeke, issued a challenge to the International Maritime Organization (the IMO) to adopt an ambitious target for reduction of emissions as part of the IMO’s planned 2018 strategy on...more

Mainbrace: March 2017 (No. 2)

by Blank Rome LLP on

What’s different about “change” in 2017? It certainly seems that we need to redefine what we mean when we consider the term itself. Shipping historically has been a conservative industry, but its adaptability over the...more

EPA's Focus on Boatyards and Marinas Continues

by Pierce Atwood LLP on

Earlier this year, EPA Region 1 identified shipyards/boatyards and marinas as the continuing focus of the Agency’s Clean Air Act regulatory compliance and enforcement efforts. Storm water compliance is also a continuing...more

New Draft Guidance Issued On Marine District Permits

by Farrell Fritz, P.C. on

One of the most cherished and an important environmental feature of New York is its shoreline. Not only do people live near, swim and fish in the marine and coastal waters of New York, from the Hudson River near the Tappan...more

District Court Reviews Definition of “Gross Negligence” in Oil Pollution Act Reimbursement Action

On December 22, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia issued an opinion in Water Quality Insurance Syndicate v. U.S., which reversed the Coast Guard’s National Pollution Funds Center’s (NPFC) finding of gross...more

Maritime Greenhouse Gas Emissions – Legal Update

by Reed Smith on

In our April update on this subject, we reported on the outcome of the sixty-ninth meeting of the Marine Environmental Protection Committee (MEPC) of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) (MEPC 69) and on what to...more

Sulphur emissions to be further capped by 2020

by Reed Smith on

The International Maritime Organisation (IMO) has confirmed that new a global cap on the sulphur content in shipping fuel will be introduced on 1 January 2020. Since 1 January 2012, the global limit has been 3.5% mass/mass...more

EPA Announces Timeline for VGP 3.0

by K&L Gates LLP on

The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) primary method of regulating ballast water and other discharges is the Vessel General Permit (VGP). Under its Clean Water Act authority, the EPA established the VGP to impose...more

EPA Report Addresses Voluntary Strategies for Reducing Air Pollution at U.S. Ports

by Robinson & Cole LLP on

As part of its initiative to reduce air pollution and greenhouse gases at U.S. ports, the EPA recently released a report that assesses strategies for pollution control and sustainable growth. The “National Port Strategy...more

Developments in aircraft and marine finance for 2016

by Thompson Coburn LLP on

As is the case with other transportation assets, the legal considerations for aircraft and vessel finance providers (FPs) include an amalgam of state, federal and international laws. Summarized below are some of the more...more

EPA Issues “National Port Strategy Assessment: Reducing Air Pollution and Greenhouse Gases at U.S. Ports”

by Beveridge & Diamond PC on

On September 22, 2016, EPA issued a report titled “National Port Strategy Assessment: Reducing Air Pollution and Greenhouse Gases at U.S. Ports” (the “Assessment”).[1] According to EPA, the Assessment supports the goal of...more

Both Chambers Pass WRDA Bills: Race Is on to Complete WRDA Work in 2016

by K&L Gates LLP on

The Senate and House both passed Water Resources Development Act (“WRDA”) bills in September, bringing Congress two major steps closer to returning to a regular, biannual process of authorizing projects and activities related...more

China Loses Claims to the South China Sea in Landmark Decision

by Cozen O'Connor on

On Tuesday, China received a binding decision from the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague, Netherlands, regarding territorial claims in the South China Sea. The international tribunal ruled unanimously that China’s...more

The Second Circuit Requires Insureds To Be Truthful With Its Insurers

by Cozen O'Connor on

In a twist on the old adage, “bad facts make bad law”, the Second Circuit’s recent decision in Fireman’s Fund Insurance Company v. Great American Insurance Company of New York, Civil Action No. 14-1346-cv, 2016 WL 2943139 (2d...more

Congress Working Aggressively to Pass a Bipartisan WRDA in 2016

by K&L Gates LLP on

Both chambers in Congress are working aggressively to pass bipartisan Water Resources Development Act of 2016 (“WRDA 2016”) legislation this year. Now is the time for entities interested in U.S. Army Corps of Engineers...more

Pierce Atwood Environmental Regulatory Compliance Calendar (RCC)

by Pierce Atwood LLP on

NEW REGULATORY DEVELOPMENTS - Federal - Draft National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) General Permit for Stormwater Discharges - All 10 EPA regions are seeking public comment on the draft 2017...more

Maritime greenhouse gas emissions – update on the outcome of MEPC 69

by Reed Smith on

In our March alert on this subject, we looked ahead to the 69th meeting in London of the Marine Environmental Protection Committee (MEPC) of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) (MEPC 69). MEPC 69 has now taken...more

Effect of Energy Policy Bills on Natural Gas Exports

Legislative Update. On April 20, the U.S. Senate passed broad legislation that covers many different aspects of the energy and environmental sectors, including changes to streamline the approval process for the export of...more

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