LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
WV Aboveground Storage Tank Act – Interpretative Rule Regarding Initial Inspection, Certification and Spill Prevention Response Plan Requirements

By William E Chambers The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection (WVDEP) filed an interpretive rule with the WV Secretary of State’s office providing direction for the initial inspection and certification requirements set forth under the Aboveground Storage Tank Act. The legislation...

Congress Tries to Reign in US EPA Rulemaking on Waters of the United States

By Katerina E. Milenkovski On September 9, 2014, the United States House of Representatives passed H.R. 5078 , a bill that would prohibit EPA and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from finalizing the Waters of the United States rulemaking that was proposed earlier this year. The bill, which was...

Planning For Drought and Drinking Water In Ontario

By Meredith James Climate change is worsening flooding but it will also bring faster spring runoffs, hotter summers, more evaporation and droughts. What will that mean for Ontario’s drinking water supply? Source water protection committees are trying to plan ahead. According to the Minister...

Public Comment Period on PA Department of Environmental Protection's Oil and Gas Rulemaking Closes May 19

Environmental Client Alert The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection’s (DEP’s) rulemaking regarding surface activities for oil and gas wells, Environmental Protection Performance Standards at Oil and Gas Well Sites (Chapters 78 and 78a), has received a significant amount...

Permit Shield Extended to General Permits by Sixth Circuit

In January 2015, the Sixth Circuit held that a defendant’s compliance with the terms of its National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (“NPDES”) general permit would effectively “shield” that defendant from claims filed under the citizen suit enforcement provisions...

Creative Sentence For Ontario Concrete Company

A Sudbury ready mix concrete company, Rainbow Concrete Industries Ltd ., pleaded guilty to one count under s. 30 of the Ontario Water Resources Act , for discharging concrete waste water into a Sudbury creek, and received a creative sentence plus a fine. This is good news. Creative sentences, i.e...

U.S. EPA and the Army Corps Finalize Much-Anticipated “Waters of the United States” Definition

On May 27, 2015, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (U.S. EPA) and the United States Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) issued a highly anticipated revision to the federal definition of “waters of the United States.” By expanding the application of various regulations under multiple...

Clean Water Rule Opens Litigation Floodgates

By A. Keith "Kip" McAlister, Jr. With much fanfare, EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers (“Corps”) recently issued a final rule clarifying which bodies of water are “waters of the United States” protected under the Clean Water Act (“CWA”). Coming in...

EPA Revises Its Regulatory Agenda, A Flurry of Activity Expected in the Next Few Months

Last week, the EPA-specific listing on the website of the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs was updated with timelines on the EPA’s regulatory efforts. Of potential interest, in chronological order of expected release, are the following rules: • May 2015 (Final Rule). Clean Water...

EPA and Corps Define “Waters of The United States”

By: Channing J. Martin EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers have promulgated a final rule defining the scope of federal jurisdiction over wetlands and other “waters of the United States” under the Clean Water Act. Dubbed the “Clean Water Rule” by EPA, the 297-page document...

Clean Water Act Jurisdiction Under the Newly Issued Clean Water Rule

More than 40 years after Congress passed the landmark Clean Water Act, the jurisdictional reach of that statute remains a contentious legal and political issue. By prohibiting the discharge of pollutants to “navigable waters” without a permit, the Act expressly limits its protections to “navigable...

Final Version of Controversial Clean Water Rule Announced: Does EPA Have Jurisdiction Over Your Ditch?

On May 29, 2015, the Obama administration released the final version of its highly controversial Clean Water Rule. President Obama declared that the new rule “will provide the clarity and certainty businesses and industry need about which waters are protected by the Clean Water Act, and it will...

EPA Report Finds No Evidence That Hydraulic Fracturing Causes Widespread Impacts On Drinking Water

By Robert J. Alessi and Jeffrey D. Kuhn This client alert is part of an ongoing series by DLA Piper attorneys on the legal, regulatory and policy issues related to hydraulic fracturing and shale gas production in the US and internationally. The US Environmental Protection Agency has issued a...

Waters of the United States – D.C. Circuit Home Builders II Opinion

Persistence is a good trait in the arena of appellate advocacy, but sometimes it is difficult to know when to keep pushing or when to stop. It may be that a signal was sent in the concurrence written by Senior Circuit Judge Silberman, with whom Senior Circuit Judge Sentelle joined, to keep pushing. Judge...

Proposal to Revise Aluminum and Selenium Water Quality Criteria

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection’s (“WVDEP”) proposed rule revisions for consideration during the 2016 regular legislative session are now available on the WVDEP website, including long-awaited revisions being proposed to the state’s existing aluminum and...

Federal Court Preliminarily Enjoins EPA and Army Corp Waters of the United States Final Rule

On August 27, 2015, a federal district judge in North Dakota, [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], preliminarily enjoined the final rule of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (ACOE), titled "Clean Water...

Oil Spills At Sea: Better Prevention and Cleanup

Some rare good news. Oil tanker spills into world oceans: there aren’t as many as there used to be, and they do not do as much damage as they used to do. According to the excellent newsletter of the International Tanker Owners Pollution Federation , both the number of oil spills and the quantity...

US EPA Publishes Proposed List of National Enforcement Initiatives for FY2017–19

On September 15, 2015, US EPA’s Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance published a proposed list of national enforcement initiatives (NEIs) for fiscal years 2017–19. This latest NEI list includes NEIs from the last round (FY2014–16) as well as three new potential NEIs that US...

Is that Wetland Jurisdictional? A Practical Guide to the New Clean Water Rule

By Channing J. Martin , Partner, Williams Mullen The Clean Water Rule recently issued by EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers defines the scope of federal jurisdiction over wetlands and other “waters of the United States.” It became effective on August 28, 2015, so you need to understand...

U.S. EPA Ordered to Pay Attorneys' Fee Sanction In Clean Water Act Lawsuit

A federal district court judge in Texas has granted a developer’s motion for summary judgment against the United States, [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], and ordered the Government to reimburse the developer’s legal fees incurred in...

EPA Enforcement Initiative

EPA is currently pursuing six National Enforcement Initiatives. One of these initiatives is entitled, “Keeping Raw Sewage and Contaminated Stormwater Out of Our Nation’s Waters.” Over the past three years, civil penalties in cases settled under this initiative have ranged from zero...

Clean Water Rule – Inconsistent Application

The final Clean Water Rule redefining “Waters of the United States” was scheduled to go into effect August 28, 2015, [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this rule: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ]. There have been several suits challenging the rule filed since the rule was finalized...

EPA Floats Proposed New Enforcement Initiatives for 2017 – 2019

The US EPA has proposed its National Enforcement Initiatives (“NEI”) for calendar years 2017 through 2019. US EPA develops a set of NEI every three years, focusing federal resources on industries with noncompliance issues on a regional or national scale, where federal attention can make a...

EPA Enjoined From Enforcing New WOTUS Rules

Last month, the United States Circuit Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, [subscribers can access an enhanced version of this opinion: lexis.com | Lexis Advance ], pushed aside jurisdictional questions and issued a stay, effective nationwide, blocking implementation of the “Waters of the United...

Proposal to Eliminate CSO Discharges in the Great Lakes Region

Municipalities, public service districts and other operators of publicly-owned treatment works (“POTWs”) are closely monitoring a controversial and ill conceived provision in U.S. Senate’s Fiscal Year 2016 spending package for the Environmental Protection Agency. Section 428 of the...