LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Exclusive Analysis of Oil Spills from Matthew Bender - The Oil Pollution Act of 1990

The Oil Pollution Act of 1990 (OPA), passed by Congress and signed by the President on August 18, 1990, largely in reaction to the Exxon Valdez catastrophe, has literally revolutionized the area of oil pollution liability. The statute amends many of the laws described above. Most significantly, it expressly...

EPA Spanish Web Site to inform Spanish-speaking public about health, environmental impacts of Oil Spill

WASHINGTON – As part of the ongoing federal response to the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, EPA has launched a Spanish language Web site to inform the Spanish-speaking public about the spill’s impact on the environment and the health of nearby residents. The Web site – http://www...

Guest Blog of the Week: Prospects for Climate & Energy Legislation in Late 2010—Part III

By Meredith Irvin and Erin Book, Managing Directors, SNR Denton In a week-long blog series, Meredith Irvin and Erin Book will summarize the main climate and/or energy proposals that are currently being discussed as we head into the final working days of the 111th Congress. Today’s blog...

Dispersants used in Deepwater Horizon oil spill persisted longer than anticipated

Nearly 771 thousand gallons of chemical dispersants were injected into the oil and gas emitted by BP's Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Based on prior research, it was anticipated that the dispersants would biodegrade with modest rapidity. Instead, researchers found that the dispersants, which were studied...

Where is the methane from the BP Deepwater Horizon blowout?

Natural gas in various forms comprised approximately 2/3 of the hydrocarbons emitted from the Deepwater Horizon well blowout. Methane is believed to compose an estimated 87.5% of that natural gas. Sampling in June 2010 found no microbial breakdown of methane. [See http://www.sciencemag.org/content/330...

Ninth Circuit rules that owners of storm water systems (e.g., cities, counties, districts) are liable for discharges of polluted stormwater into rivers and ocean

It is well known that stormwater gathers a variety of pollutants as it flows across the landscape and even through stormwater drainage systems. See, for example, http://cfpub.epa.gov/npdes/home.cfm?program_id=6 and http://www.epa.gov/owow_keep/NPS/index.html . In NRDC v. County of Los Angeles, Ninth...

Coast Guard stumbles as it tries to preempt Massachusetts state law

The Massachusetts Oil Spill Prevention Act (OSPA) was enacted following an oil spill in Buzzards Bay. [As the appellate court notes, Buzzards Bay is a scenically beautiful body of water. See also http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Buzzards_Bay_map.png.] OSPA requires a tugboat escort for all tank vessels...

Under California's Polanco Act, owners of a right-of-way to property are not owners or operators for subsurface contamination they did not cause and had no duty to investigate

California's Polanco Act provides a powerful (some would say one sided) tool for Redevelopment Agencies to force the remediation of a site subject to redevelopment, or to cause PRP's to reimburse such agencies for the remedial cost outlays. [As an aside, it should be noted that Governor Brown...

Did Gulf surface bacteria not find Deepwater Horizon oil to be a complete diet?

Prior posts have discussed various aspects of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill and its impact on the biota of the Gulf. Bioremediation has several goals. First, one uses nature to remediate contamination, saving significant sums. Second, the "food" (contaminant) should cause the bacteria to...

Ecuador Oil Pollution Claim Can Try Again To Collect From Chevron In Canada

By Meredith James Indigenous Ecuadorian villagers can try again to enforce a controversial $18 billion environmental damage award against Texaco (now merged with Chevron Corp., one of the world’s largest corporations) in Canada. This is part of a worldwide legal battle between the villagers...