Environmental

  • May 22, 2018

    Class Can't Get Quick Win In TCPA Suit Against Solar Co.

    A California federal judge on Monday refused to grant a quick win to a certified class seeking to hold a solar company liable for allegedly bombarding consumers with unwanted robocalls on their cellphones, ruling that questions remained about how many offending calls had been placed and whether class members are entitled to enhanced damages.

  • May 22, 2018

    City's Paper Bag Fee Not A Tax, Colo. High Court Says

    The Colorado Supreme Court has ruled a city’s charge on paper bags is not a tax, meaning the city can enact it without seeking voter approval otherwise required for new taxes under the state taxpayers’ bill of rights.

  • May 22, 2018

    9th Circ. Removes Judge In Tribes Water Rights Dispute

    The Ninth Circuit on Tuesday said that a Nevada federal court judge should no longer preside over a water rights case after he dismissed counterclaims by the federal government and the Walker River Paiute tribe, saying there was evidence he was biased against federal government attorneys.

  • May 22, 2018

    Okla. Judge Greenlights Class Action In Fracking Quake Suit

    An Oklahoma state judge on Friday certified a class action accusing an oil and gas company of contributing to earthquakes near a city in the state through its use of hydraulic fracturing wastewater disposal wells, one of several suits lodged against drillers over links between fracking and increased earthquake activity in the state.

  • May 22, 2018

    Stay Corps' $3.5B Pipeline Permit, Enviros Tell 4th Circ.

    Environmentalists urged the Fourth Circuit on Tuesday to suspend a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers permit for the $3.5 billion Mountain Valley gas pipeline while they challenge its legality, arguing that the developers have admitted they can't satisfy the permit's conditions.

  • May 22, 2018

    Chemicals Maker Inks $3.4M Upgrades, Penalty Deal With EPA

    A Georgia-based specialty chemicals manufacturer has agreed to spend roughly $3 million upgrading its facilities and to pay a $400,000 civil penalty to settle the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s claims that it flouted the Clean Air Act in connection to a 2012 explosion, the federal government announced Tuesday.

  • May 22, 2018

    Water Infrastructure Bill Sails Through Senate Panel

    The Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works on Tuesday unanimously passed a bipartisan water infrastructure bill that is meant, among other things, to slash red tape, boost state and local input on projects, increase water storage, deepen key ports and extend funding for Native American irrigation initiatives.

  • May 22, 2018

    Feds, Wyo. Urge Justices To Spurn Tribes' Land Suits

    The federal government and the state of Wyoming have urged the U.S. Supreme Court to reject challenges to a Tenth Circuit ruling that the Eastern Shoshone and Northern Arapaho tribes' shared reservation was shrunk by a 1905 law, saying the case doesn't present a circuit split or conflict with high court precedent.

  • May 22, 2018

    Olin, Insurer Ask Rakoff To Explain Ruling On $130M Award

    Lamorak Insurance Co. and Olin Corp. are haggling over the meaning of a ruling last month that directed the insurer to pay the chemical producer $130 million to cover clean-up costs at contaminated sites, with both parties asking the court what exactly it meant by “final order.”

  • May 22, 2018

    Navajo Back Mine Owner In 9th Circ. Fight Over Coal Plant

    The Navajo Nation says the Navajo Transitional Energy Co. should be able to advocate for the nation’s interests in a Ninth Circuit case hinging on sovereign immunity, as environmentalists challenge approval for a coal-fired power plant and a nearby mine on tribal land.

  • May 22, 2018

    Minn. Gov. Vetoes Bill To Greenlight Pipeline Project

    Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party Gov. Mark Dayton has refused to sign a bill that would authorize the company behind a pipeline replacement project to go ahead with construction across the northern part of the state, saying the legislation would nullify a process to see if the project is necessary for the state.

  • May 22, 2018

    Construction Industry Anxious For Water Rule Saga To Dry Up

    The construction industry spends huge amounts of time and money on all kinds of permits to complete a project, and few pose bigger headaches than those triggered when the federal government determines that a project affects water bodies protected by the Clean Water Act — making the Trump administration’s attempt to clear up the issue a top concern.

  • May 21, 2018

    Justices To Review Scope Of Immunity For Int'l Orgs

    The U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to review a D.C. Circuit decision holding that international organizations enjoy even more immunity from lawsuits than do foreign governments, taking up a case Monday from a group of Indian nationals suing the International Finance Corp. over a power plant project they say has wreaked havoc on the surrounding environment.

  • May 21, 2018

    NJ Asks DC Circuit To Undo PennEast Pipeline Approval

    New Jersey launched a challenge in the D.C. Circuit on Monday to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's recent decision to greenlight construction of the controversial $1 billion PennEast gas pipeline.

  • May 21, 2018

    National Park Service Sea Level Report Cites Climate Change

    The U.S. National Park Service on Friday released a report on sea level rise and its implications for the agency that focused on human-caused climate change, something the Trump administration had reportedly been considering avoiding.

  • May 21, 2018

    NJ Justices Won't Review BASF, Shell Win Over Polluted Site

    The New Jersey Supreme Court on Monday declined to review an appellate decision upholding a settlement that forced the former owner of a landfill site to turn over the facility to BASF Corp., Shell Oil Co. and others in exchange for their handling of cleanup costs.

  • May 21, 2018

    Dentons Nabs Selman Breitman's Product Liability Partner

    Dentons has hired a Selman Breitman LLP partner with more than 20 years of experience representing building contractors and developers in disputes arising out of alleged exposure to asbestos and other toxic substances, according to the firm.

  • May 21, 2018

    Pa. Budget Illegally Uses Oil, Gas Lease Funds, Enviros Say

    Pennsylvania has been hit with a lawsuit accusing it of unconstitutionally padding its general fund with money from oil and gas leases, despite a 2017 ruling from the state’s high court that such funds must be used for conservation.

  • May 21, 2018

    CIT Sends Chinese Solar-Cell Case Back To Commerce

    The U.S. Court of International Trade on Friday asked the U.S. Department of Commerce to either reconsider or better explain some of the value choices it used in reviewing the anti-dumping duties it is seeking to impose on several Chinese companies that allegedly dumped solar cells on the U.S. market.

  • May 21, 2018

    Gov't Gets It Wrong On Climate Suits, Calif. Cities Say

    The cites of San Francisco and Oakland on Friday blasted the U.S. government's assertions that their suits seeking to hold oil giants liable for climate change-related infrastructure damage have no place in the courtroom, arguing that the feds are relying on a mistaken view of federal common law.

Expert Analysis

  • Kinross Settlement Highlights FCPA Risks For Mining Cos.

    Collmann Griffin

    In March, a Canadian gold and silver mining company agreed to pay nearly $1 million to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission over alleged violations of the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. The case shows the risks faced by companies that fail to implement appropriate controls post-acquisition, particularly in the mining industry, says Collmann Griffin of Miller and Chevalier Chtd.

  • Introducing The Legal Industry To Millennial Business Owners

    Yaima Seigley

    ​The current business climate has produced vast opportunities for seasoned lawyers to create valuable connections with millennial business owners, but first lawyers must cleanse their palate of misconceptions regarding millennials, says Yaima Seigley of Isaac Wiles Burkholder & Teetor LLC.

  • Policy Language Can Curtail Long-Tail Insurance Claims

    Paul Ferland

    The New York Court of Appeals' recent decision in Keyspan v. Munich shows that the most effective tool an insurer has in cases involving long-tail claims is its specific policy language limiting coverage to losses that occur during the policy period, says Paul Ferland of Foran Glennon Palandech Ponzi & Rudloff PC.

  • What's Next For EPA's Scientific Review Process?

    Elise Scott

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Scott Pruitt recently issued a proposed rule titled "Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science," with the goal of ensuring that data and models underlying scientific studies pivotal to regulatory action are available to the public. However, if finalized, it's expected the rule would face legal challenges, say attorneys with Winston & Strawn LLP.

  • Opinion

    Why Won't Judicial Nominees Affirm Brown V. Board Of Ed?

    Franita Tolson

    On May 17, 1954, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Brown v. Board of Education, recognizing a moral and legal truth that should be beyond question in American society. The refusal by some of President Donald Trump's judicial nominees to say whether they believe the case was decided correctly is indicative of the narrow-minded elitism they would bring to the bench, says professor Franita Tolson of the University of Southern California's Gould School of Law.

  • The Lawyers' Guide To Cloud Computing

    Daniel Garrie

    In deciding whether cloud computing is right for the organization or firm, an attorney must consider cloud computing’s significant impact on the electronic discovery process, say Daniel Garrie, managing partner at Law & Forensics LLC, and David Cass, chief information security officer at IBM Cloud.

  • Opinion

    Recovering Lawyers' Lost Position Of Independence

    Samuel Samaro

    In these politically divisive times, many ask whether our institutions and traditions can help us return to a greater consensus. In days long past, the legal profession could have been counted on to serve just such a function. But lawyers are now just as polarized as everyone else, says Samuel Samaro of Pashman Stein Walder Hayden PC.

  • 8 Reasons To Take A Fresh Look At Your Law Office Lease

    Tiffany Winne

    After moving into a new law office, tenants often file their signed leases away, figuring that the terms are set for a few years at least. However, leases can be very flexible instruments, and should be reviewed annually even if nothing seems amiss, says Tiffany Winne of Savills Studley Inc.

  • Congressional Forecast: May

    Layth Elhassani

    Congress returned to Washington, D.C., this week for a three-week work period before the Memorial Day recess. The Republican majority is aiming to meet deadlines on several priority items, including fiscal year 2019 appropriations bills and renewed program authorizations for agriculture, defense and the Federal Aviation Administration, say Layth Elhassani and Kaitlyn McClure of Covington & Burling LLP.

  • A General Counsel's Tips For Succeeding As A New Associate

    Jason Idilbi

    Based on his experience as a BigLaw associate for six years and now as general counsel for a tech startup, Jason Idilbi of Passport Labs offers some best practices for newer associates — whether they are serving external clients or senior attorneys within their firms.