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William A. Ruskin: No Unanimity As To What New ASTM E1527-13 Standard Requires

By William A. Ruskin Some environmental practitioners contend that Phase I site assessments, commonly used in real estate transactions, will now be more costly and time consuming due to the new standard. Seyfarth Shaw counsels in its Client Alert that the new standard requires that, “if the...

William A. Ruskin: How Environmental Lawyers Can Avoid Getting Sued For Legal Malpractice

By Wi lliam A. Ruskin No matter how conscientious, environmental lawyers, like other attorneys, are regularly sued for legal malpractice. It is not difficult to imagine some of the dicey situations where the environmental practitioner may fall prey to such claims: (1) a municipality sues...

Texas Federal Judge Imposes Maximum $2 Million Fine On Felony Pollution Counts

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — (Mealey’s) A Texas federal judge on Feb. 5 imposed fines totaling more than $2 million on convictions stemming from oil/water separation tanks that had been operated without the required covers for nearly 10 years, polluting the air and causing the deaths of migratory...

William A. Ruskin: Environmentalists Support Fracking But With Important Reservations

By William A. Ruskin It is necessary that natural gas be substituted for coal and oil as an energy source if the world is to have any chance of avoiding runaway greenhouse gas (“GHG”) emissions, particularly from the developing world. At present, it is unrealistic to expect renewable...

Babst Calland: Permitting for Using Diesel in Hydraulic Fracturing Revised by EPA

By Scott McKernan The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently released revised permitting guidance for underground injection control (UIC) under the Safe Drinking Water Act for wells using diesel fuels during hydraulic fracturing activities, reports The State Journal . EPA has...

Babst Calland: Proposed Bill to Allow Unlimited Drilling Waste in West Virginia Landfills

By W. Brian Nickerson As reported in the Spirit of Jefferson newspaper, Senate Bill 474 , introduced in the West Virginia Senate on Monday, February 3, would amend W. Va. Code § 22-15-8 to allow commercial waste facilities to accept drill cuttings and associated hydraulic fracturing waste above...

High Court Hears Arguments On EPA’s Ability To Regulate Greenhouse Gases

WASHINGTON, D.C. — (Mealey’s) The U.S. Supreme Court on Feb. 24 heard oral arguments on whether the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency overstepped its bounds by regulating greenhouse gas emissions from stationary sources such as power plants ( Utility Air Regulatory Group v. U.S. Environmental...

DLA Piper Product Liability Alert: California Green Chemistry Initiative’s Coming Priority Products List, And The DTSC Strategic Plan

The highly anticipated next step in California’s Green Chemistry Initiative (GCI) is the planned April 2014 release of the list of Priority Products that will be first in the spotlight for chemical regulatory scrutiny, triggering compliance requirements with a 180-day deadline for any manufacturer...

Company, Government Tell High Court That Landowners’ Claims Are Time-Barred

WASHINGTON, D.C. — (Mealey’s) Attorneys for CTS Corp. and the U.S. Department of Justice told the U.S. Supreme Court April 23 that a Fourth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruling reinstating a lawsuit brought by landowners asserting claims under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation...

Supreme Court Reverses Ruling Giving States Second Chances At Emissions Plans

WASHINGTON, D.C. — (Mealey’s) In a 6-2 ruling, the U.S. Supreme Court on April 29 reversed a District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals decision that states are excused from adopting implementation plans prohibiting emissions that “contribute significantly” to air pollution...

U.S. Supreme Court Holds That The Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation And Liability Act Does Not Preempt A State’s Statute Of Repose

Monday, June 9, 2014, the United States Supreme Court released the decision in the case of CTS Corporation v. Peter Waldburger, et al . The case involved a tort action brought for damages that arose from the release of a hazardous substance, pollutant, or contaminant into the environment. CTS sold...

DLA Piper Climate Change Alert: EPA Announces Carbon Regulations For Existing Power Plants

By Deborah E. Jennings , Andrew B. Schatz and Catherine B. Campbell The Environmental Protection Agency has announced long-awaited regulations to reduce carbon-dioxide (CO 2 ) emissions from existing power plants pursuant to the Clean Air Act. EPA's Clean Power Plan would for the first time establish...

Norton Rose Fulbright: CERCLA's Federal Discovery Rule Does Not Preempt State Statutes Of Repose

By Janet L. McQuaid , Michael P. Gaetani , Joshua Snyder , and Jennifer Blair Caplan . . . [T]he United States Supreme Court held in CTS Corp. v. Waldburger 1 that Section 9658 of CERCLA 2 does not preempt state statutes of repose that set a time frame after which a potential defendant is no longer...

U.S. High Court Denies Appeal In Suit Over Sept. 11 Toxic Dust Cleanup Costs

WASHINGTON, DC. — (Mealey’s) The U.S. Supreme Court on Dec. 1 rejected a petition challenging the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals’ finding that defendants in a Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) lawsuit can raise an “act of war”...

BP Agrees To Pay $18.7 Billion To Resolve Claims Over Gulf Oil Spill

NEW ORLEANS — (Mealey’s) BP Exploration & Production Inc. will pay $18.7 billion over the course of 18 years to resolve Clean Water Act (CWA) and natural resource damages claims from the federal government and states of Alabama, Florida, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas stemming from...