Environmental

  • February 7, 2018

    Pa. Appeals Court Urged To Ax Sunoco Pipeline Challenge

    An attorney for Sunoco Inc. urged a Pennsylvania appeals court during oral arguments Wednesday to throw out a “bizarre” lawsuit from an environmental group challenging the company’s ability to use eminent domain to seize land for its controversial Mariner East pipeline.

  • February 7, 2018

    Bankrupt Solar Panel Installer Hit With WARN Suit

    A pair of ex-employees of bankrupt solar panel installer Level Solar Inc. on Wednesday took their claims that the company laid off them and hundreds of other workers without notice to New York bankruptcy court, filing an adversary claim alleging the company broke state labor law.

  • February 7, 2018

    EPA Has 60 Days To Respond To Conn. Pollution Petition

    A Connecticut federal judge on Wednesday gave the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency 60 days to remedy its failure to act on the state’s petition asking the agency to stop pollution from a Pennsylvania coal-fired power plant from blowing in the state’s direction.

  • February 7, 2018

    FirstEnergy Abandons Coal Plant Sale After FERC Rejection

    FirstEnergy has told a West Virginia regulator it would not move forward with plans for its merchant power unit to sell a coal-fired power plant to one of the company’s utilities, saying that in the wake of regulatory setbacks the $195 million deal was no longer worth pursuing.

  • February 7, 2018

    Fed Circ. Questions Army Corps’ Katrina Liability

    A Federal Circuit panel on Wednesday repeatedly challenged a Louisiana Parish and local landowners to explain in oral arguments how decades-old actions by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers create liability for the government for potentially billions of dollars’ worth of flooding damage from Hurricane Katrina.

  • February 7, 2018

    States Urge 11th Circ. To Quickly Remand Water Rule Case

    Ten states on Tuesday asked the Eleventh Circuit to hurry up and transfer a legal challenge to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Water Rule to federal district court so they can get a faster decision on their bid to halt the rule’s implementation.

  • February 7, 2018

    NRG Scores $2.8B From Renewable Unit, Energy Plant Sales

    NRG Energy Inc. on Wednesday said it will sell its renewables business and a handful of Southern energy assets in a pair of deals worth around $2.8 billion as part of a plan implemented last year to cut costs and create better shareholder value.

  • February 7, 2018

    Senate Panel Again Advances Trump's EPA Deputy Pick

    The U.S. Senate Committee on the Environment and Public Works on Wednesday again advanced President Donald Trump's pick for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's second-in-command post on a strict party-line vote, with Democrats grounding their opposition in the nominee's background as a coal industry lobbyist.

  • February 6, 2018

    NY Joins States Suing EPA Over Clean Water Rule Delay

    New York and several other states on Tuesday filed suit in New York federal court against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, accusing it of failing to consider the full consequences or receive the necessary public input before suspending an Obama-era rule defining the Clean Water Act’s reach.

  • February 6, 2018

    Chubb Needn't Fill Cleanup Coverage Gaps, NY Justices Hear

    A Chubb insurer told New York's highest court on Tuesday it shouldn't be required to pay a National Grid PLC unit's costs to clean up contamination at manufactured gas plants attributed to years when no pollution liability insurance was available in the marketplace, saying a ruling to the contrary would violate the clear terms of its policies.

  • February 6, 2018

    NJ Rejects PennEast's Right-Of-Way Bid For Pipeline

    New Jersey has told PennEast that it won’t sign off on a proposed right-of-way needed for the company to construct its controversial gas pipeline that would run through Pennsylvania and the Garden State.

  • February 6, 2018

    Northeast Cap-And-Trade Turns 10: A RGGI Report Card

    While federal climate change policy is now in full retreat under President Donald Trump, the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative has been a picture of policy stability since it began running in 2009. As the climate compact of northeastern states enters its 10th year of operation and welcomes a 10th member in New Jersey, climate experts draw up a RGGI report card.

  • February 6, 2018

    No Changes To Obama-Era Coal Dust Rule, MSHA Chief Says

    The head of the Mine Safety and Health Administration on Tuesday told congressional lawmakers that the agency will not roll back any portion of the Obama administration’s 2014 rule limiting coal dust exposure to mine workers.

  • February 6, 2018

    China Strikes Back Against US Safeguards At WTO

    The Chinese government demanded compensation for new U.S. safeguard tariffs on solar panel components and washing machines on Tuesday, alleging that the Trump administration violated a number of World Trade Organization rules in erecting the new restrictions.

  • February 6, 2018

    Morgan Lewis Adds Ex-BakerHostetler Attys As Partners

    Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP has announced it's snagged two more attorneys from BakerHostetler, including a partner with a history of working on mergers and acquisitions in the energy and health care spaces, who will be partners in its Washington, D.C., and Houston offices.

  • February 6, 2018

    PE-Backed Wood Pellet Co. Launches $120M Offering

    Canadian wood pellet manufacturer Pinnacle Renewable Holdings Inc. on Tuesday took in approximately CA$150 million ($119.7 million) from an initial public offering and a secondary offering involving private equity funds affiliated with Onex Corp., marking the first IPO of 2018 for the Toronto Stock Exchange.

  • February 6, 2018

    BLM Fights Effort To Undo 10th Circ. Fracking Rule Decision

    The federal government and environmental groups on Monday urged the Tenth Circuit not to grant North Dakota’s bid to leave in place a lower court ruling that the government didn’t have the authority to apply a 2015 fracking rule to tribal and federal land.

  • February 6, 2018

    EPA Gets Enviros' Stormwater Challenge Pared Down

    A Maryland federal judge on Monday trimmed claims brought by a coalition of environmental groups against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency after it denied a request to look into alleged water quality violations, deciding the standards the groups thought were obligatory were actually discretionary.

  • February 5, 2018

    Ill. Man Sentenced To 3 Years For Violating Clean Air Act

    An Illinois man will serve 37 months in federal prison for violating the Clean Air Act by failing to adequately remove and dispose of asbestos material from a former wheat mill facility-turned-Superfund, an Illinois federal judge ruled Monday. 

  • February 5, 2018

    Winery Settles Feds' Enviro Claims Over Fatal Ammonia Leak

    A California winery has agreed to pay a $330,000 civil penalty and make $300,000 in improvements to its facility to resolve allegations that it flouted environmental laws in connection to a 2012 accidental release of anhydrous ammonia that caused the death of a worker, the federal government announced Monday.

Expert Analysis

  • Spoliation Scrutiny: Disparate Standards For Distinct Mediums

    Robin Shah

    Two years ago, Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 37(e) was amended to provide a clearer road map for courts analyzing whether to permit sanctions for the spoliation of evidence. Yet there is still no specific guidance for when a sanctions request relates to electronically stored and nonelectronically stored information, says Skadden associate Robin Shah.

  • 3 Takeaways Squeezed Out Of Juicer's Insurance Battle

    Walter Andrews

    Last month, a Washington district court rejected an insurer's attempt to escape insurance coverage for a Proposition 65 lawsuit filed against juice maker Tree Top Inc. Companies dealing with toxic or environmental claims can distill at least three important lessons from this case, say attorneys with Hunton & Williams LLP.

  • Getting Creative With Approaches To Removal

    Gregg Weiner

    When a lawsuit filed in state court is removed to federal court, it is usually either because the suit alleges a claim under federal law, or because the parties are residents of different states. But sometimes actions can be removed that do not clearly fit either of these grounds, say Gregg Weiner and Andrew Todres of Ropes & Gray LLP.

  • Hearing The Need For More Women’s Voices In The Courtroom

    Carrie Cohen

    For many female attorneys, the results revealed in the New York State Bar Association’s recently adopted report on female litigators in the courtroom were not encouraging but not terribly surprising. Each stakeholder in the litigation process — judges, law firms and corporate clients — should contribute toward increasing female voices in the courtroom, says Carrie Cohen of Morrison & Foerster LLP.

  • 5th Circ. Broadens Oil Pollution Act Liability

    Christopher Hannan

    In U.S. v. American Commercial Lines, the Fifth Circuit offered only narrow limitations to liability under the Oil Pollution Act. Based on this recent ruling, full liability may be triggered by any act or omission that occurs as a result of a contractual relationship, say Christopher Hannan and Kat Statman of Baker Donelson Bearman Caldwell & Berkowitz PC.

  • Roundup

    My Strangest Day In Court

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    Every seasoned litigator has his or her fair share of courtroom stories. Check out the strange experiences that captured reader interest in this popular 2017 series.

  • Catching Our Balance: Opportunities For ESA Reform

    Kerry McGrath

    When Congress enacted the Endangered Species Act, it emphasized the need to strike the proper balance between protecting species and allowing productive human activities. Now, the Trump administration has the opportunity — and seemingly, the appetite — to do more to refine the ESA program, says Kerry McGrath of Hunton & Williams LLP.

  • Ohio's New Practical Approach To Waste Management

    David Edelstein

    Ohio will soon join Texas and New Jersey as the only states to regulate “paint and paint-related waste” as universal waste under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. The move is a positive change for Ohio industries from both an economic and “practicality of handling waste” perspective, says David Edelstein of Vorys Sater Seymour and Pease LLP.

  • How 2 Devices And 1 Domain Changed My Practice In 2017

    Paul Kiesel

    The question I ask about new technology is how can it improve the quality of my practice — and my life? This year, the iPhone X, the Apple Watch Series 3 and a .LAW domain have proven to be great investments, for professional and personal reasons, says attorney Paul Kiesel of Kiesel Law LLP.

  • Alternative Fees: My Experience At Bartlit Beck

    J.B. Heaton

    Bartlit Beck was a wonderful place to work for 18 years, and the lawyers there are not only excellent attorneys but also great people. That said, I can look analytically at the Bartlit Beck fee model and make some observations on its pros and cons, says J.B. Heaton, founder of investment analytics company Conjecture LLC.