Environmental

  • September 30, 2016

    Horse Racing Co. Settles Feds' Polluted Wastewater Claims

    The company that operates Aqueduct Racetrack reached a deal on Friday to settle the federal government’s claims that it violated the Clean Water Act by discharging millions of gallons of polluted wastewater from the horse racing track into both New York state and city’s storm sewer systems.

  • September 30, 2016

    Feds, Tribes Say 9th Circ. Needn't Rethink Culvert Ruling

    The federal government and several tribes pressed the Ninth Circuit on Thursday to stay firm on its decision holding that the state of Washington must replace roughly 1,000 culverts to protect tribal salmon fishing rights, saying the ruling is in line with precedent and needn’t be reviewed.

  • September 30, 2016

    Red Wolf Killing Permits Blocked By N.C. Judge

    A North Carolina judge on Thursday told the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service it may not issue permits for the killing of red wolves without first proving they are a threat to the safety of humans, livestock or pets, a victory for environmentalists who had sought to stop the practice.

  • September 30, 2016

    Army Corps To Take 2nd Look At Sacred-Lake Gully Crossings

    The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers needs to look into whether the gully crossings it allowed near a lake sacred to the Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate tribe could affect historic places, a South Dakota federal judge ruled Thursday.

  • September 30, 2016

    Erie Coke Inks Second Emissions Settlement

    Six years after agreeing to pay $6 million in fines due to air quality violations, Erie Coke Corp. is again inking a deal with federal regulators that includes a half-million dollars in civil penalties and renewed promises to address emissions problems at the company’s northwestern Pennsylvania facility.

  • September 29, 2016

    API Says Biodiesel Groups Can't Weigh In On EPA Fuel Row

    The American Petroleum Institute said Wednesday a swath of biodiesel industry groups shouldn't be able to chime in on a set of consolidated appeals in the D.C. Circuit challenging the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's volume obligations under the Renewable Fuel Standard Program.

  • September 29, 2016

    Chemoil Agrees To $98M Deal To End Renewable Fuel Claims

    Chemoil Corp. agreed on Thursday to retire $71 million in renewable fuel credits and pay a $27 million civil penalty — the largest ever in the history of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s fuel program — to settle allegations that it artificially inflated the estimated amount of biodiesel in the country.

  • September 29, 2016

    Flint Complaint Still Too Long, Engineering Firm Says

    Engineering firm Veolia North America LLC further urged a Michigan federal judge Thursday to throw out a proposed class action trying to peg it with liability for Flint’s lead contamination crisis, saying it shouldn’t have to “swim through” the prolix complaint to piece together what, exactly, make up the accusations against it.

  • September 29, 2016

    Duke Energy Pays $2M To Cover Fire On NC Tribe's Land

    A Duke Energy unit will pay $1.7 million under a deal related to a weeklong fire that burned thousands of acres of Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians forest in North Carolina.

  • September 29, 2016

    Enviros Sue USFS Over California Spotted Owl Habitat

    Environmentalists on Thursday sued the U.S. Forest Service for authorizing logging that is allegedly harmful to critical California spotted owl habitat in California’s Tahoe National Forest.

  • September 29, 2016

    DOT Speed-Limiter Rule Could Cut Emissions, Report Says

    The U.S. Department of Transportation's proposed rule requiring speed-limiting devices on heavy-duty trucks won't impact water, farmland or biological resources but will help reduce carbon dioxide equivalent emissions, according to a draft report released Thursday.

  • September 29, 2016

    Monsanto Shakes San Diego City, But Not Port In PCB Case

    A California federal judge on Wednesday denied Monsanto's bid to escape the Port of San Diego's suit alleging the agricultural giant is responsible for polychlorinated biphenyls contaminating the harbor, rejecting San Diego city's claims but ruling the port's power over the harbor gives it standing.

  • September 29, 2016

    Paradigm Says No Need To Speed Up Tribes' Pipeline Appeal

    Paradigm Energy Partners LLC told the Eighth Circuit on Wednesday that there is no reason to speed up the Three Affiliated Tribes' appeal of a decision that blocked the tribes from interfering with the construction of a pair of pipelines underneath a lake on their reservation because the construction is already complete.

  • September 29, 2016

    Judge Signs Off On EPA's $14M Cleanup Deal With Railcar Co.

    A federal judge gave the green light on Wednesday to a $14 million settlement that resolves the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s suit seeking costs for cleaning up hazardous substances at a site once operated by a defunct railcar maintenance company in suburban Philadelphia.

  • September 29, 2016

    House Science Chair Asks SEC Head To Explain Exxon Probe

    The House Science Committee’s leader said Thursday he’s concerned that a U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission investigation into Exxon Mobil Corp.’s accounting practices may be linked to the New York attorney general’s probe into the company’s actions regarding climate change.

  • September 29, 2016

    Investors Split On SunEdison Venue At JPML

    SunEdison Inc. investors sparred Thursday before the U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation over whether various lawsuits alleging the investors were misled about the bankrupt renewable energy company’s liquidity should be consolidated in New York, with some arguing it would unnecessarily disrupt cases on appeal.

  • September 29, 2016

    Enviros Sue Exxon Over Climate Risks To Mass. Terminal

    Exxon Mobil Corp. put Boston-area communities in jeopardy by not adequately safeguarding hazardous materials at a petroleum storage facility from rising seas and more storms due to climate change, an environmental group alleged Thursday in what it calls a first-of-its-kind lawsuit.

  • September 29, 2016

    Nixon Peabody Snags Ex-Manatt Real Estate Partner In LA

    A former Manatt Phelps & Phillips LLP partner who specializes in real estate, land use and environmental compliance has joined Nixon Peabody LLP in its Los Angeles office, the firm announced.

  • September 29, 2016

    Boxer Presses EPA To Beef Up Chemical Safety Rule

    Senate Environment and Public Works Committee ranking member Barbara Boxer called on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to fortify a proposed rule with requirements that chemical facilities develop and implement risk management programs, saying Thursday that the proposal insufficiently enhances security at the country’s hazardous chemical facilities.

  • September 29, 2016

    Ariz. Highway Foes Fear Harm 'A Certainty' Without Injunction

    Environmental and community groups on Wednesday defended their bid to halt a Phoenix-area highway project while the Ninth Circuit reviews the ruling that said federal and state agencies didn’t take shortcuts on environmental reviews when greenlighting the project, saying they would be irreversibly harmed if the project is allowed to move forward.

Expert Analysis

  • Burden Of Proof At PTAB: Will Magnum Oil And Aqua Mix?

    Bob Steinberg

    The Federal Circuit is focusing much of its attention lately on procedural issues that go beyond particular patents and prior art analysis, and affect the relative procedural burdens placed on either petitioners and patent owners. Cases like Magnum Oil Tools and Aqua Products give guidance and consistency to such issues that may arise in all PTAB proceedings, say attorneys with Latham & Watkins LLP.

  • Oral Advocacy And 'Vocal Fry'

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    In a sneak preview of the fall edition of Legal Communication & Rhetoric, Professor Michael Higdon of the University of Tennessee College of Law explores the negative reactions to "vocal fry," the accusations of sexism those reactions have engendered, and what all this means for female attorneys.

  • The Courtroom Where It Happened: Hamilton As A Lawyer

    Randy Maniloff

    Often lost in discussions about Alexander Hamilton is that he was an extremely important New York lawyer. He had an extensive law practice until his death in 1804 and he wrote what is considered to be the first treatise in the field of private law. Ultimately, Hamilton certainly did get "a lot farther by working a lot harder, by being a lot smarter, by being a self-starter," says Randy Maniloff of White and Williams LLP.

  • Why Have Lawyers Forgotten About The Middle Class?

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    Sorry, fellow lawyers, judges and legislators, but the jig is up. It’s time to show the public the cards up our sleeves and give them a chance to weigh in on the fairness of a system that touches so many aspects of their everyday lives, says Chas Rampenthal, general counsel of LegalZoom.

  • EPA Signals Intent To Exercise TSCA Section 6 Authority

    Lawrence E. Culleen

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is poised to begin exercising its expanded regulatory authority over the makers and users of chemical substances pursuant to recent amendments to the Toxic Substances Control Act. In addition to other proposals, the EPA may soon publish proposed rules regulating uses of specific chemical substances under Section 6 of the TSCA, says Lawrence Culleen of Arnold & Porter LLP.

  • EPA Offers Insights For Retailer Waste Management

    Joseph S. Kakesh

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently published what it has termed a strategy for dealing with the management of hazardous wastes in the retail sector. Although the devil is in the details, the plan is potentially a promising step by the agency to provide the regulated community with greater clarity regarding its obligations in this complicated and confusing area, says Joseph Kakesh of Wiley Rein LLP.

  • In Congress: Ticktock

    Richard Hertling

    With five days to go before a government shutdown, the parties are not that far apart, but those differences have proven difficult to resolve, say Richard Hertling and Kaitlyn McClure of Covington & Burling LLP.

  • The DAPL And The Corps' Latest Clean Water Act Conundrum

    Kimberly Leue Bick

    The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has been defending itself on two fronts recently, arguing its right to limit its jurisdiction in the Dakota Access Pipeline case, while simultaneously arguing to cast a wide jurisdictional net in another case. Meanwhile, Dakota Access LLC is caught in limbo due to the United States' request for it to voluntarily halt its pipeline construction, say Kimberly Bick and Allison Ross of Bick Law LLP.

  • Gas Demand Response Programs Are Alluring But Impractical

    Gordon A. Coffee

    As a solution to the shortage of gas for power generation during the winter some industry analysts have suggested creating demand response programs for natural gas, which would be far less capital-intensive than other options. Unfortunately, several practical problems hinder their implementation, says Gordon Coffee of Winston & Strawn LLP.

  • The Yates Memo And Parallel Products Liability Litigation

    Geoffrey M. Drake

    There has been little discussion of the potential impact of the Yates Memo on parallel civil litigation — particularly product liability and other types of mass tort litigation — or of the reactionary measures that companies and their executives and other employees may be taking in response, says Geoffrey Drake of King & Spalding LLP.