Environmental

  • April 22, 2016

    With Regret, Volkswagen Holds Back Emission Probe Findings

    Volkswagen is delaying plans to release the preliminary results of an investigation into its diesel emissions scandal being conducted by Jones Day, the company announced Friday, saying releasing the findings too soon would present “unacceptable risks” for the company.

  • April 22, 2016

    Mining Co. Wants Judge To Revisit Cleanup Suit Fees Order

    A Canadian mining company on Thursday asked a federal judge to reconsider his finding ruling that a group of tribes in Washington state can seek to recover certain litigation fees and costs from its claim over pollutants dumped into the Columbia River.

  • April 22, 2016

    Timber Co.'s $1.9M Asbestos Claim Too Late, WR Grace Says

    Reorganized mining and material company W.R. Grace and Co. asked a Delaware bankruptcy judge Thursday to toss a $1.9 million asbestos damage claim by a logging company near its closed Montana mine because the claim came more than seven years after the bar date.

  • April 22, 2016

    House Dems Float Criminal Penalties For 'Defeat Devices'

    A number of House Democrats on Thursday backed a proposed amendment to the Clean Air Act that would establish criminal penalties for automakers like Volkswagen that knowingly create vehicles and parts designed to evade emissions standards.

  • April 22, 2016

    DOJ Asks Daimler AG To Probe Its US Diesel Emissions

    At the request of the U.S. Department of Justice, Daimler AG on Thursday said that it is carrying out an internal investigation of its emissions certification process, following proposed class actions alleging that the German automaker uses Volkswagen-style "defeat devices" to ace emissions inspections.

  • April 22, 2016

    Aussie Solar Panel Co. Asks Judge To Toss $1.3M Award

    An Australian solar panel company and its Nevada-based intermediary asked a New York federal court Thursday to set aside a more than $1.3 million award granted to China’s Trina Solar Ltd.’s U.S. subsidiary for the Australian company's alleged failure to pay for solar panels.

  • April 22, 2016

    WTO Dispute Roundup: Russia, Mexico Turn Up The Heat

    In Law360’s latest glimpse at the World Trade Organization’s Dispute Settlement Body, Mexico stymies a U.S. bid to settle the tuna labeling dispute, Russia forges ahead with its case against Ukrainian fertilizer duties, and countries inch close to selecting a new Appellate Body member.

  • April 22, 2016

    10th Circ. Says State Isn't Behind Resort's Snowboard Ban

    Snowboarders will not carve the slopes at Alta Ski Area alongside their skier counterparts anytime soon after a Tenth Circuit panel declined Tuesday to revive a suit alleging the famed resort’s snowboarding ban is unconstitutional, saying its lease with the U.S. Forest Service fails all four tests for establishing state action.

  • April 22, 2016

    SunEdison Gets Nod To Begin Tapping $300M Ch. 11 Financing

    SunEdison Inc. received a New York judge's interim approval Friday to begin tapping $300 million in bankruptcy financing intended to stabilize the renewable energy giant as it embarks on a court-monitored restructuring of its debts.

  • April 21, 2016

    VW Mea Culpa Paved Path To Lightning-Fast DOJ Settlement

    Volkswagen is proposing to settle civil claims by the U.S. Department of Justice and hundreds of consumers in multidistrict litigation over its fraudulent emissions software in just about three months since the DOJ's suit, a virtually unheard-of pace that attorneys say was likely the result of VW's admissions and eagerness to move past the scandal.

  • April 21, 2016

    High Court Unlikely To Wade Into 6th Circ. Water Row

    The Sixth Circuit’s refusal Thursday to revisit a shaky panel decision that asserted jurisdiction over challenges to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Water Rule gives the rule’s opponents a chance to seek high court review, but experts say the U.S. Supreme Court will likely avoid the case until the Sixth Circuit rules on its merits.

  • April 21, 2016

    Enviros Sue FWS To Take The Heat Off The Bull Trout

    The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service has not done enough to protect the bull trout’s cold-water habitat from global warming, two environmental groups alleged on Wednesday in their seventh lawsuit in a 20-year battle with the agency over the threatened species.

  • April 21, 2016

    NJ Takes Steps To Allow More Development In Protected Area

    The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection announced Thursday that it is working toward amending septic density rules that cap development in its protected Highlands region, saying recent scientific data suggests it can increase sewage capacity in forested and other protected areas and still maintain the region’s high water quality standards.

  • April 21, 2016

    Amid Suit, EPA Proposes New Rules For Maine's Tribal Waters

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency proposed new water quality standards Wednesday to regulate tribal waters in Maine, in the midst of an ongoing lawsuit in which Maine is accusing the federal agency of limiting its powers to monitor these waters.

  • April 21, 2016

    Recycler Tells 9th Circ. Insurer Waived Right To Cancel Policy

    A California-based recycling company urged the Ninth Circuit on Thursday to affirm that Star Insurance Co. wasn’t allowed to rescind its policy in an arson coverage dispute due to misrepresentations on its coverage application, saying the insurer knew of the discrepancies for two years yet failed to address them.

  • April 21, 2016

    Hall Estill Plants Flag In Denver With Ex-Energy Co. GCs

    Oklahoma-based Hall Estill Hardwick Gable Golden & Nelson PC is setting up shop in Denver, pulling in the principal of a Colorado corporate law firm and luring a former top-level executive for the Williams Cos. Inc. out of retirement, the firm announced Wednesday.

  • April 21, 2016

    4 Clean Energy Takeaways From SunEdison's Collapse

    SunEdison Inc.'s Chapter 11 filing Thursday caps the stunning and rapid fall of a clean energy giant with a multibillion-dollar portfolio of renewable generation projects and developers. Experts weighed in on what the bankruptcy may mean for the future of clean energy development and identified four key takeaways.

  • April 21, 2016

    Pa. Oil, Gas Well Rules OK'd By Regulatory Review Board

    Controversial new rules governing surface operations at oil and gas wells in Pennsylvania were narrowly approved Thursday afternoon after a marathon hearing before the state’s Independent Regulatory Review Commission.

  • April 21, 2016

    SoCalGas Officers Slapped With Derivative Suit Over Gas Leak

    A shareholder of Southern California Gas Co.'s parent company, Sempra Energy, has launched a derivative suit in California state court accusing the companies' officers of breaching their fiduciary duty amid a natural gas leak at one of SoCalGas' storage facilities.

  • April 21, 2016

    Enviro Groups Sue Feds Over Navajo Coal Approvals

    The U.S. Department of the Interior broke the law by allowing a Navajo Nation-owned coal mine to expand and feed the Four Corners Power Plant for another 25 years despite the threat it poses to the ecosystem of the Southwest, according to a lawsuit filed by five environmental groups Wednesday in Arizona federal court.

Expert Analysis

  • When The Cost Of Inheriting Property Far Exceeds Its Value

    Manya Deva Natan

    Although real estate can be a worthwhile investment and a valuable inheritance, there are times when the cost of owning a property greatly eclipses what it's worth. In the case of toxic succession — when a contaminated piece of real estate is passed down — a beneficiary can be liable for the environmental contamination, no matter what the cost, says Manya Deva Natan of SSS Legal and Consultancy Services.

  • Changing Climate: What The Paris Accord Means For Australia

    Elisa de Wit

    As a result of the Paris agreement, we expect to see a more stable policy setting in Australia aimed at moving the economy to one with a lower-emissions profile. Businesses will be hoping that the time for short-term, unstable policy is over and that in due course, bipartisan agreement will be reached on what has been a fraught area of public policy, say Elisa de Wit and Hannah Gould of Norton Rose Fulbright.

  • Is Student Loan Stress The New Norm For Law School?

    Stephen Dash

    According to a recent study from the Indiana University Center for Postsecondary Research, more than half of 20,000 students surveyed reported high levels of stress related to landing a job and paying back student loans. Stephen Dash, founder and CEO of Credible Labs Inc., says the numbers show that this trend could be the new standard — especially at private law schools.

  • Changing Climate: What The Paris Accord Means For Canada

    Alex MacWilliam

    It is predicted that the climate action strategies under development in Canada will aim to substantially reduce national greenhouse gas emissions and achieve these reductions as quickly as possible. To most effectively engage with policymakers, business leaders should be aware of their own companies’ carbon risk exposure, say Dentons attorneys Alex MacWilliam, chairman of the Alberta Environmental Appeals Board, and Meredith James.

  • In Congress: Senate Off, House Tackles FAA Extension

    Richard A. Hertling

    With the Senate adjourned for two weeks and the House due to follow once legislative business concludes Wednesday, the schedule this week will be lighter than normal. But before recess, the House is expected to vote on the Senate-amended Airport and Airway Extension Act of 2016, which extends authorization for the Federal Aviation Administration, including air-traffic control operations, say Richard Hertling and Kaitlyn McClure of ... (continued)

  • 7 Best Practices For Managing An Associate's Personal Crisis

    Stacey Saada Schwartz

    Most lawyers receive little formal training in how to manage others under normal circumstances, let alone during a personal crisis. And the personal problems of associates can make law firms squirm. But when firms offer guidance for navigating intense and emotionally charged moments in an associate's life, everyone benefits — particularly the client, says lawyer and executive coach Stacey Saada Schwartz.

  • Changing Climate: What The Paris Accord Means For China

    Lester Ross

    Chinese President Xi Jinping has asserted a diplomatic policy approach to climate change and reportedly intends to inject more Chinese elements into international rules. This includes efforts to establish a “new type of great-power relationship” with the United States, says WilmerHale's Lester Ross, chairman of the policy committee of the American Chamber of Commerce in the People's Republic of China.

  • Examining The Scope Of Expanded 'Critical Habitat' Rules

    Elizabeth A. Lake

    New rules that went into effect recently provide both the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the National Marine Fisheries Service with a broader ability to designate and protect critical habitat. The revised regulations provide an immense amount of discretion and flexibility for the services, while creating a great deal of uncertainty for landowners, say attorneys at Holland & Knight LLP.

  • How California Streamlined Costly, Time-Consuming Litigation

    Van-Dzung Vu Nguyen

    For decades, complex lawsuits have been a challenge for state courts and litigants across the nation, often unnecessarily consuming time and money for all involved. These cases can clog court dockets and create uncertainty for the parties when different judges handle discovery, motion practice and ultimately trial. California's approach to the problem provides a good model for other regions, say members of Crowell & Moring LLP.

  • Changing Climate: What The Paris Accord Means For India

    Saionton Basu

    Some in India believe that the finance clause in the Paris agreement could be used to limit the flow of funds to developing countries seeking to expand thermal power production. If that were to happen, the agreement could indirectly breach the position achieved by developing nations such as India, says Saionton Basu of Duane Morris LLP.