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Environmental

  • August 14, 2018

    Ill. AG Takes On Trump Tower Over Wastewater Permit

    The Illinois attorney general has accused the owners of Trump International Hotel and Tower in Chicago of violating state law by discharging heated wastewater into the Chicago River after its permits expired in August.

  • August 14, 2018

    Tesla's Latham-Guided Panel To Study Take-Private Scenarios

    Tesla Inc. said Tuesday that its board of directors has formed a special committee, advised by Latham & Watkins LLP, that will evaluate any going-private proposals for the electric carmaker in the wake of a recent tweet by CEO Elon Musk that signaled his desire to take the company private.

  • August 14, 2018

    Horticultural Biz Broke Preservation Rules, NJ Justices Say

    The New Jersey Supreme Court found Tuesday that a family-owned horticultural business violated the state’s Agriculture Retention and Development Act by removing premier soil on preserved farmland to build greenhouses, reversing a ruling that said further findings were needed to determine if the company ruined the land.

  • August 13, 2018

    David Boies On How Dyslexia Shaped His Practice

    One of the country’s highest-profile litigators, the Boies Schiller Flexner LLP chairman was diagnosed with dyslexia when he was in his 30s. In an interview with Law360, he talks about practicing law with the learning disability.

  • August 13, 2018

    BigLaw’s Mental Health Stigma Shows Signs Of Fading

    Sometimes viewed as an “invisible” disability, mental illness has long been forced under wraps because of the risk attorneys could face bias and stigma. Here’s how lawyers, law firms and other groups are starting to take on the status quo.

  • August 13, 2018

    Suniva Creditor Sues To Halt Removal Of Solar Cell Equipment

    The largest unsecured creditor of bankrupt solar cell maker Suniva Inc. filed an adversary complaint late Friday in Delaware seeking to prevent the debtor from having the creditor remove manufacturing equipment it recently purchased at auction from the debtor’s Norcross, Georgia, factory.

  • August 13, 2018

    Energy Cos. Win Nix Of Suit On Okla. Quake Insurance Costs

    A federal judge on Monday threw out a proposed class action asserting that a slew of oil and gas companies should be forced to pay for Oklahomans’ earthquake insurance premiums given that their use of hydraulic fracturing wastewater disposal wells has allegedly caused a rise in man-made earthquakes in the state.

  • August 13, 2018

    Dentons Grows In Latin America With New Chilean Office

    Dentons announced Monday that it is combining with a Chilean firm, a move the firm's leadership boasted will further shore up its presence in Latin America and enable it to provide legal services to clients around the globe.

  • August 13, 2018

    Dominion Seeks OK For Some Atlantic Coast Pipeline Work

    Dominion Energy Transmission Inc. on Monday said it would quickly address issues that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission identified when it stopped construction along the length of the $5 billion Atlantic Coast gas pipeline, arguing that work on parts of the project should be allowed to resume immediately.

  • August 13, 2018

    Japanese Utilities Buy Stakes In $2.6B Innogy Wind Farm

    German energy company Innogy SE said Monday it has agreed to sell a 41 percent stake in a £2 billion ($2.6 billion) planned English wind farm to a pair of Japanese electric utilities for an undisclosed amount.

  • August 13, 2018

    Enviros Can't Stop Calif. Housing Permit Over Density Worries

    A California appeals court rejected a conservation group’s challenge to a plan to build six single-family homes on an approximately 11-acre piece of land in the city of Riverside, deciding that there was no basis for the group’s assertion that a further environmental assessment was needed.

  • August 13, 2018

    DHS Says Enviro Challenge To Border Wall Waiver Is Moot

    The Trump administration on Friday once again urged a D.C. federal judge to toss a suit accusing it of violating numerous federal laws by waiving environmental oversight regulations to accelerate construction of approximately 20 miles of a wall along the border between eastern New Mexico and Mexico, telling the court it lacks the authority to review the claims.

  • August 13, 2018

    San Diego Beats Monsanto Water Pollution Counterclaims

    Monsanto Co. lost a bid to flip a lawsuit over its alleged pollution of the San Diego Bay by blaming it on the city’s stormwater system when a California federal judge found that the company didn’t have standing to bring counterclaims because it suffered no direct injury from the contamination.

  • August 13, 2018

    Texas Enviro Agency Can't Escape Age And Race Bias Suit

    A Texas federal judge ruled Monday that the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality must face a suit accusing one of its department directors of age and race discrimination, writing that a former hydrologist presented enough questions of fact for the case to survive summary judgment.

  • August 13, 2018

    Enviros To Fight FERC's PennEast Pipeline Approval In Court

    Environmental groups on Monday said they plan to challenge the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's approval of the planned $1 billion PennEast gas pipeline, claiming the agency failed to show a need for the project and didn’t consider its potential climate change impacts.

  • August 13, 2018

    NYC Restaurant Group Fights Foam Ban At Appeals Court

    A trade group representing restaurants and foam manufacturers has taken its opposition to New York City's ban on styrofoam, effective Jan. 1, to state appellate court, saying Mayor Bill de Blasio is unfairly resisting the city council's mandate to recycle polystyrene and that recycling is both economically feasible and environmentally effective.

  • August 13, 2018

    Phillips 66 Refinery Hit With $475K Penalty Over Modifications

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the state of Illinois filed a proposed consent decree Friday in federal court against Phillips 66 and WRB Refining LP, requiring the companies to reduce emissions at the Wood River Refinery under the Clean Air Act, spend at least $500,000 on lead-paint abatement and pay a penalty of $475,000.

  • August 13, 2018

    Ariz. Agency Wants Quick Win In Water Rights Row

    An Arizona water district has moved for a quick win in a dispute over the district's alleged obligations to deliver excess water supply to the Ak-Chin Indian Community, urging a federal court to reject quick win bids filed by the tribe itself and the federal government.

  • August 13, 2018

    KKR Gets Stake In Indian Enviro Engineering Co. for $530M

    Private equity firm KKR & Co. LP said Monday that it has agreed to acquire 60 percent of India-based Ramky Enviro Engineers Ltd. for approximately $530 million, in a deal that was guided by Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP and Cyril Amarchand Mangaldas.

  • August 10, 2018

    How The Legal Industry Lets Down Lawyers With Disabilities

    The dissolution of a five-year-old bar group marks the latest setback for disabled attorneys, who often find little support while navigating an inhospitable industry.

Expert Analysis

  • Will Blood Testing Revive Medical Monitoring Claims?

    Tony Hopp

    In Burdick v. Tonoga, a New York state trial court recently certified what appears to be the first medical monitoring class defined by the level of a particular chemical measured in class members’ blood serum, signaling a potential revival of interest in medical monitoring class actions, say attorneys with Steptoe & Johnson LLP.

  • A 'Broad' Approach To Toxic Tort Class Cert. At 6th Circ.

    Carol Wood

    Last week, in Martin v. Behr Dayton Thermal Products, the Sixth Circuit affirmed an Ohio federal court’s certification of a so-called “issue class” under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 23(c)(4). The ruling may serve as persuasive authority for future toxic tort plaintiffs who seek to certify a class without establishing a defendant’s liability to any individual class member with common proof, say attorneys with King & Spalding LLP.

  • Suddenly, ALJs Become Political Appointees

    Brian Casey

    Less than three weeks after the U.S. Supreme Court decided Lucia v. Securities and Exchange Commission, President Donald Trump signed an executive order applying the court’s rationale in Lucia to the hiring — and firing — of all administrative law judges in the federal government, making them entirely beholden to the heads of their agencies or the president for their jobs, says Brian Casey of Barnes & Thornburg LLP.

  • A Lawyer's Guide To Genomics In Toxic Tort Cases: Part 3

    Kirk Hartley

    Genetic data and techniques are becoming ever more powerful tools for explaining when and how diseases arise. They can also have very strong evidentiary value, and in some toxic tort cases, genetic findings can provide conclusive answers for a judge or jury, say Kirk Hartley and David Schwartz of ToxicoGenomica.

  • DC Circ. Set A Higher Bar For Hydro License Renewal

    Walker Stanovsky

    On July 6, the D.C. Circuit torpedoed a hydroelectric license renewal issued in 2013 because the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service did not consider environmental damage already caused by the project. In doing so, the court rejected FERC’s long-standing practice of using existing conditions and operations as an environmental baseline, say attorneys at Davis Wright Tremaine LLP.

  • A Lawyer's Guide To Genomics In Toxic Tort Cases: Part 2

    Kirk Hartley

    The use of genetic testing in tort litigation is relatively new. Such testing may uncover one or more gene variants that help identify individuals at an increased risk of developing a disease. Whole genome sequencing can be the best and most appropriate approach for toxic tort civil litigation, say Kirk Hartley and David Schwartz of ToxicoGenomica.

  • Congressional Forecast: July

    Layth Elhassani

    While Senate hearings on the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court will draw much attention during July, Congress remains very busy with fiscal year 2019 appropriations bills. The chambers may go to conference this month on the first of several appropriations "minibuses," says Layth Elhassani of Covington & Burling LLP.

  • What Kavanaugh's Writing Tells Us About His Personality

    Matthew Hall

    People with certain personality traits tend to use certain words. A computer analysis of Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s D.C. Circuit opinions reveals that he is highly extraverted, which means that he would be a prominent voice on the U.S. Supreme Court, says Matthew Hall, a professor at the University of Notre Dame.

  • Opinion

    3 Pros, 3 Cons Of Litigation Finance

    Ralph Sutton

    An educated guess puts the number of new litigation funders launched in the past 18 months at 30 — an astonishing number, with more to come. Is this a blessing to our legal system or something more akin to tulip mania? Maybe both, says Ralph Sutton, founder and CEO of litigation funding firm Validity Finance LLC.

  • A Lawyer's Guide To Genomics In Toxic Tort Cases: Part 1

    Kirk Hartley

    Genomic data and technologies can assist both plaintiffs and defendants in toxic tort and personal injury cases in uncovering the underlying causes of disease. In coming years, the influence of genomics in civil law will be even broader than its influence in criminal law, say attorney Kirk Hartley and scientific consultant David Schwartz of ToxicoGenomica.