Environmental

  • July 31, 2015

    TerraForm Global Slashes Target, Raises $675M With IPO

    TerraForm Global Inc., a clean energy-focused yieldco and a unit of SunEdison, slashed its initial public offering expectations on Friday, raising $675 million instead of a targeted $1.13 billion, which would have been one of the largest U.S. public debuts so far this year.

  • July 31, 2015

    Farm Group Says EPA Should Nix Controversial Waters Rule

    The American Farm Bureau Federation called on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to withdraw its controversial Waters of the United States rule, alleging Friday that recently disclosed U.S. Army Corps of Engineers memos show “falsehood and dysfunction” reigned during the rule-making process.

  • July 31, 2015

    JPML Merges Clean Water Rule Cases In 6th Circ.

    The U.S. Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation has merged before the Sixth Circuit a dozen lawsuits challenging the controversial new U.S. Environmental Protection Agency rule clarifying which U.S. waterways are subject to federal jurisdiction.

  • July 31, 2015

    Planned Florida Black Bear Hunt Called Unconstitutional

    A Florida conservation group filed suit Friday in state court against the Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission challenging the constitutionality of its new rules regarding bear hunting, including a hunt the agency plans to allow this October.

  • July 31, 2015

    Calif. Truckers Ask High Court To Hear Diesel Rule Row

    The California Construction Trucking Association has asked the U.S. Supreme Court to weigh in on whether a federal court can oversee its challenge to a state regulation requiring certain diesel trucks to undergo emissions upgrades, saying that the suit has no bearing on the state's federally approved air quality plan.

  • July 31, 2015

    Mitsubishi Fuso Can't Shake Truck Engine Defect Claims

    A Florida grocery store chain’s putative class action alleging emission controllers in Mitsubishi Fuso Truck of America’s truck engines were defective survived Thursday when a New Jersey federal judge denied most of the truck makers’ motions to strike class allegations and breach of warranty claims.

  • July 31, 2015

    10 IPOs Targeting $1.4B Ready To Rock 1st Week Of August

    A total of 10 companies — two energy companies, two health-conscious private equity-backed companies, four life sciences companies and two holdovers — are ready to go public during the first week of August, together targeting $1.4 billion before an end-of-summer slowdown.

  • July 31, 2015

    5th Circ. Upholds $25M Judgment In Katrina Coverage Row

    The Fifth Circuit preserved a $25.4 million win for oilfield operator Cox Operating LLC in a coverage suit for damage from Hurricane Katrina on Thursday, rejecting an insurer's argument that the lower court misread Texas insurance law when it calculated interest.

  • July 31, 2015

    6th Circ. Won't Revive Goodyear's $2M Cleanup Fee Bid

    The Sixth Circuit ruled Thursday that Goodyear Tire and Rubber Co. cannot recoup approximately $2 million in legal expenses related to defending an environmental cleanup suit brought by Lockheed Martin Corp., saying they’re outside the scope of an indemnification agreement.

  • July 31, 2015

    Makah Say Neighboring Tribes Exaggerating Fishing Area

    The Makah Indian Tribe told a Washington federal judge Thursday that fishing zones proposed by the Quinault and Quileute tribes in the Pacific Ocean go too far beyond the area adjudicated by the court in keeping with their ancestral fishing grounds.

  • July 30, 2015

    San Francisco Can't Sue DOT Over Gas Blast, 9th Circ. Says

    San Francisco is not authorized to sue the U.S. Department of Transportation on claims the agency failed to enforce natural gas pipeline safety rules that led to a deadly 2010 explosion, the Ninth Circuit said Thursday, affirming a lower court.

  • July 30, 2015

    Judge To Rule On $225M NJ Exxon Mobil Deal In August

    The decision to approve or reject New Jersey's proposed $225 million payout from Exxon Mobil Corp. to settle natural resource damage claims will wait another month because there's “a lot to consider,” a judge said Thursday after six hours of testimony by the deal's advocates and opponents.

  • July 30, 2015

    Mont. High Court Nixes Crow Members' Water Rights Row

    The Montana Supreme Court on Wednesday upheld a lower court decision tossing a suit by members of the Crow Nation over water rights on their reservation, saying the lower court had rightly decided not to stay the case while the members’ federal complaint was pending.

  • July 30, 2015

    Cecil The Lion's Death Spurs Talk Of Game Trophy Airport Ban

    A New Jersey lawmaker on Wednesday responded to the “tragic demise” of Cecil — a beloved African lion hunted down in Zimbabwe by a Minnesota man in early July — by proposing legislation to ban the transport of game trophies of threatened or endangered species through New York and New Jersey's major airports.

  • July 30, 2015

    Polluted Site's Owner Can Reboot Suit Against NJDEP

    A New Jersey appeals court Thursday gave CD&L Realty LLC another shot at suing the state Department of Environmental Protection to take action against the previous owner of a contaminated industrial property that CD&L purchased in 2000.

  • July 30, 2015

    Greenpeace Must Pay While Activists Suspend Shell Operation

    An Alaska federal judge said Thursday that Greenpeace Inc. is in civil contempt and will be fined thousands for every hour its activists hang off the St. John's Bridge in Portland, Oregon, preventing Royal Dutch Shell PLC's ship from leaving.

  • July 30, 2015

    GOP, Dems Duel Over EPA's Ozone Standards Plan

    U.S. House lawmakers on both sides of the aisle are weighing in on the Obama administration's plan to tighten national ozone standards, with Republicans claiming a tougher standard would be economically crippling and Democrats pushing for the strictest standard possible to protect public health.

  • July 30, 2015

    Nevada Power, Tribe Strike $4.3M Deal Over Plant's Waste

    A Native American tribe and the Sierra Club on Tuesday asked a Nevada federal judge to approve a $4.3 million settlement with Nevada Power Co. and a co-owner of the coal-fired energy plant, which the tribe said leaked toxic materials into its land and drinking water.

  • July 30, 2015

    Calif. Officials Ignored Fracking Effects Study, Enviros Say

    The Center for Biological Diversity on Thursday urged a state judge to block California oil and gas regulators from issuing hydraulic fracturing permits, claiming they ignored a state-ordered study that found some chemicals used in the controversial drilling technique may be harmful.

  • July 30, 2015

    Gov't Not Liable For Cleanup Costs At Defense Superfund Site

    A California federal judge on Wednesday let the government off the hook for cleanup costs at a site in San Diego where defense products were built for 60 years, holding that TDY Industries Inc. would have to fully cover the costs of clearing harmful chemicals out of the soil.

Expert Analysis

  • 7 Keys To Improving Your Direct Examination

    James Murray

    Trial lawyers should approach direct examination with the same excitement as cross-examination. If you do not, the jury will notice and your case will suffer. An effective direct examination backs the lawyer out of the action and puts the witness front and center to tell the story in a conversational, comforting, interesting fashion, says James Murray of Dickstein Shapiro LLP.

  • DC Circ.'s Rule Remand Won't Stop EPA On Air Emissions

    Thomas A. Lorenzen

    After the D.C. Circuit's recent ruling in EME Homer City Generation LP v. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the EPA can continue to implement its Cross-State Air Pollution Rule for the foreseeable future, including imposing state emission budgets for sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxide that have now been ruled invalid, say Thomas Lorenzen and Robert Meyers of Crowell & Moring LLP.

  • UPenn Fracking Study Can't Give Plaintiffs Causation

    Harry Weiss

    Despite the media attention surrounding a recent University of Pennsylvania study linking increased hospital visits for cardiac and neurological complaints with hydraulic fracturing, it is unlikely to significantly help plaintiffs looking to establish causation, say Harry Weiss and Philip Yannella of Ballard Spahr LLP.

  • Managing A Company's Internal Environmental Investigation

    Rob Van Walleghem

    Unless corporate policy is absolute, in-house counsel should advocate for use of the work-product privilege when conducting U.S.-based internal investigations. A company can always choose to waive the privilege if it decides to disclose its finding to the government — but it loses that option if it never invokes the privilege in the first place, say attorneys at Alston & Bird LLP and Tervita Corp.

  • 3rd Circ. Gives EPA Broad Discretion In Chesapeake Bay

    Laura Wolff

    By ruling in favor of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in American Farm Bureau Federation v. EPA, the Third Circuit gave the agency wide latitude in using the Total Maximum Daily Load process to regulate nonpoint sources of pollution, which typically are regulated by the states, say Laura Wolff and Marc Bruner of Perkins Coie LLP.

  • 9th Circ. Confirms FCA Relator's Conviction Bars Recovery

    Suzanne Jaffe Bloom

    U.S. v. CH2M Hill was a matter of first impression in the Ninth Circuit, and the court’s recent holding is consistent with prior decisions from the Sixth and Eighth Circuits that have noted that relators who have been convicted for their participation in the fraud are not entitled to any recovery, say Suzanne Jaffe Bloom and Mollie Richardson of Winston & Strawn LLP.

  • FERC Finds No Cause For Change In Its GHG Analysis

    Howard L. Nelson

    The Sabine Pass Liquefaction LLC rehearing order suggests that the Council on Environmental Quality's draft guidance concerning climate change analysis from federal agencies will not change the calculus of environmental impact analyses from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission under the National Environmental Policy Act, insofar as it concerns greenhouse gases, say Gus Howard and Howard Nelson of Greenberg Traurig LLP.

  • An Oft-Forgotten Detail In Infrastructure Deals

    Burt Braverman

    The fallout from overlooking telecommunications licenses — an essential element of infrastructure deals — can be at best inconvenient and at worst very costly, says Burt Braverman of Davis Wright Tremaine LLP.

  • Texas Takes Firm Stance Toward Local Environmental Fines

    Gerald J. Pels

    Texas' cap on local fines and penalties from environmental litigation is one of the first in the country. While H.B. 1794 does not limit the state’s authority to bring actions, recover penalties or limit any authority — state or local — to pursue criminal actions for environmental infractions, it will provide predictability in enforcement and will often lead to greater compliance, says Gerald Pels of Locke Lord LLP.

  • REBUTTAL: The Problem With 3rd-Party Litigation Financing

    Lisa Rickard

    Manipulating gender disparity in the service of hawking a flawed investment product does nothing but trivialize a serious and important issue. The tortured logic in Burford Capital LLC’s recent plug for third-party litigation financing is nothing more than a marketing ploy to boost revenues, says Lisa Rickard, president of the U.S. Chamber Institute for Legal Reform.