Environmental

  • October 31, 2017

    Dynegy, Calpine Deals Signal Power Producer M&A Surge

    A pair of recent megadeals that will see Dynegy Inc. and Calpine Corp. exit the independent power producer stage signals a wave of consolidation about to hit a sector struggling with flat electricity prices and the growing impact of state clean energy policies on regional wholesale electricity markets, experts say.

  • October 31, 2017

    Fla. City Blasts Enviros' Evidence In Sewage Discharge Row

    The city of Gulfport, Florida, urged a Florida federal court Monday to strike evidence environmental groups and citizens presented in their suit claiming the city discharged untreated sewage into Tampa Bay and the Gulf of Mexico, arguing the statements are merely hearsay.

  • October 31, 2017

    How They Won It: Morgan Lewis Scores 9th Circ. CERCLA Win

    After a trial court said that TDY Industries Inc. had to shoulder all the costs of cleaning up chemicals at a San Diego site where the company had built military equipment, Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP stepped in as TDY’s counsel and convinced the Ninth Circuit to reverse the lower court and make the government pay a share of an $11 million cleanup tab.

  • October 31, 2017

    Insurers Say Cooper's NJ Cleanup Suit Violated 1989 Deal

    Three insurance companies told a Michigan federal court Monday that Cooper Industries’ recently successful New Jersey suit against them over environmental cleanup costs was a violation of a 1989 settlement.

  • October 31, 2017

    Proposed Delaware River Fracking Ban Slammed At Hearing

    Members of Pennsylvania’s business and agricultural communities told Republican lawmakers during a hearing on Tuesday that a proposed ban on hydraulic fracturing inside the Delaware River basin threatens to rob landowners of their rights and close the door on much-needed economic growth in the region.

  • October 31, 2017

    Enviros Want DC Circ. To Halt FERC Certification Of Pipeline

    Environmental groups on Monday urged the D.C. Circuit to halt a Federal Energy Regulatory Commission order granting a certificate for the Atlantic Sunrise pipeline aimed at delivering natural gas from northern Pennsylvania to markets farther south, saying the environment has already been harmed by construction.

  • October 30, 2017

    Sheriff's Captain Pleads Not Guilty To 'Codfather' Scheme

    Federal prosecutors’ latest catch in the case of a notorious Massachusetts fisherman pled not guilty on Monday to smuggling cash to Portugal for “The Codfather,” maintaining he was an innocent bystander when the industry magnate allegedly took advantage of a Thanksgiving charity trip abroad.

  • October 30, 2017

    MoFo Resolves Fee Dispute In Sungevity Ch. 11

    Morrison & Foerster LLP on Monday resolved its fee dispute with bankrupt rooftop solar firm Sungevity Inc.’s buyer and post-petition lender, agreeing to reduce its bid by $25,000 and clearing the way for its total request of about $2.5 million for the roughly six-month-long case.

  • October 30, 2017

    FERC Greenlights NY Pipeline Amid Permit Denial Fight

    The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission on Friday said Millennium Pipeline Co. LLC may start building a natural gas pipeline feeding a New York power plant, over the objections of the state's Department of Environmental Conservation.

  • October 30, 2017

    Yurok Says Fellow Calif. Tribe Must Face Fishing Rights Suit

    The Yurok Tribe told a California federal court on Friday that the Resighini Rancheria can't escape a suit claiming one of its members was fishing in a portion of the Klamath River reserved to the Yurok, because the litigation has gone too far for the tribe to claim sovereign immunity now.

  • October 30, 2017

    Bosch Can’t Nix Suit Claiming Role In VW Emissions Scandal

    Auto parts maker Robert Bosch GmbH Inc. on Monday lost its bid to dodge a suit over its alleged role in the Volkswagen diesel emissions scandal, as a California federal judge found certain dealerships showed they have suffered concrete injuries due to Bosch’s role in developing engine components that helped certain cars fool emissions regulators.

  • October 30, 2017

    Tribe Hits Back At BP Bid To Get Out Of Tribal Court Suit

    The Yerington Paiute Tribe, its chair and its tribal court pushed back in Nevada federal court Friday against a bid by two BP units to bar the tribe from suing them in the tribal court over environmental damage at an abandoned copper mine.

  • October 30, 2017

    BP, Exxon, Others Dodge Revival Of La. Coastal Damage Suit

    The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear a Louisiana flood protection board's bid to revive its multibillion-dollar suit alleging the oil and gas drilling activities of 80 energy companies, including BP PLC, Exxon Mobil Corp. and Chevron Corp., had damaged the state's coastal ecosystems.

  • October 30, 2017

    FBI Probing Nixed $300M Puerto Rico Power Contract

    The FBI is investigating a now-canceled $300 million contract to restore power in Puerto Rico that was granted to a fledgling power company from U.S. Secretary of Interior Ryan Zinke's hometown, after lawmakers raised concerns over how the deal was procured, according to media reports Monday.

  • October 30, 2017

    Ill. Nuke Plant Subsidy Plan Is Sound, 7th Circ. Told

    Illinois' plan to subsidize struggling nuclear power plants is a legitimate exercise of its authority over environmental and electricity policy and doesn't usurp the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's exclusive authority over wholesale power markets, the state told the Seventh Circuit on Friday.

  • October 30, 2017

    DC Circ. Pauses Heavy-Duty Truck Trailer Emissions Rule

    The D.C. Circuit on Friday granted a request by a truck-trailer manufacturers trade association to delay the implementation of a federal rule meant to limit greenhouse gas emissions from heavy-duty truck trailers.

  • October 29, 2017

    Trump Taps FedEx Safety Exec To Head OSHA

    President Donald Trump has picked a top FedEx safety official to serve as the next head of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the White House announced Friday.

  • October 27, 2017

    Enviros Slam Trump's Promise To Hatch To Shrink Bears Ears

    In the wake of reports that President Donald Trump promised Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, that he would shrink Bears Ears National Monument, environmental groups criticized the move and said they would sue if the president took action.

  • October 27, 2017

    Class Counsel In Dow Pollution Suit Slam Attys' Fee Bid

    Lead class counsel representing residents in a $375 million settlement with Dow Chemicals Co. in a nuclear pollution suit have told the Tenth Circuit that three individual attorneys who say they were denied a share of $150 million in fees have filed a frivolous claim.

  • October 27, 2017

    Lawmakers Probe Mont. Energy Firm's Deal With Puerto Rico

    Congressional leaders made their suspicions known Thursday about a $300 million contract to restore Puerto Rico's power in the aftermath of Hurricane Maria, work that was awarded to a fledgling company from U.S. Secretary of Interior Ryan Zinke's hometown.

Expert Analysis

  • Opinion

    For More Value And Diversity In Outside Counsel, Go Small

    Sara Kropf

    Albert Einstein famously said, “The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.” That maxim applies to large companies that seek more value and diversity from their outside counsel by expecting big firms to change. There’s a simple solution to this problem, according to attorneys Margaret Cassidy, Sara Kropf and Ellen D. Marcus.

  • How Plaintiffs And Defense Counsel Misperceive Each Other

    Daniel Karon

    What makes the practice of law so stressful? Our thesis is that it comes from being terrible to each other. As a plaintiffs lawyer and a defense lawyer, we asked what we believed our opposition thought about us and how our opposition judged us — and then we compared notes, say Daniel Karon of Karon LLC and Philip Calabrese of Porter Wright Morris & Arthur LLP.

  • Storm-Damaged Businesses Need Environmental 'Baselines'

    Kevin Daehnke

    What if, after a storm like Hurricane Harvey or Irma, a small business finds itself liable for hundreds of thousands (or even millions) of dollars of environmental contamination that spilled out during the storm? This is a very real concern for businesses that store and use chemicals, but there are ways to establish protections, says Kevin Daehnke of Daehnke Cruz Law Group LLC.

  • The Role Legal Finance Can Play In Firm Year-End Collections

    Travis Lenkner

    Payment collection delays have caused law firms to seek new options, one of which is litigation finance. In this context, litigation finance can offer alternative avenues to firms as they approach the end of a fiscal year or partnership distribution dates, says Travis Lenkner of Burford Capital LLC.

  • GAO Report May Impact PHMSA Pipeline Safety Inspections

    Laura LaValle

    The U.S. Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration uses its Risk Ranking Index Model to determine the frequency with which pipelines must be inspected. But a new report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office, questioning the assumptions behind the model, seems likely to lead to changes in pipeline inspection procedures, say Laura LaValle and Hana Vizcarra of Beveridge & Diamond PC.

  • 'Per-Doc' Pricing Can Improve Document Review

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    Imagine going to a restaurant and ordering your steak medium-rare. The steak arrives burned. You expect the kitchen to bring you another one properly done, right? And you don’t expect to pay for two steaks, do you? Paying a vendor for document review should be no different, says Lisa Prowse, an attorney and vice president at e-discovery firm BIA Inc.

  • Extreme Weather Fuels New Climate Change Litigation Trend

    Michael McDonough

    As federal efforts to roll back environmental regulations from the Obama era continue, environmental groups have been increasingly filing lawsuits against industry alleging damages related to climate change impacts. The most recent lawsuits show that extreme weather events such as Hurricanes Harvey and Irma likely will intensify this trend, say Michael McDonough and Stephanie Amaru of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP.

  • Mass. Clean Energy Standard Reshapes Energy Landscape

    Eric Runge

    With the regulations it issued last month, Massachusetts maintains its leadership position among states seeking to achieve ambitious clean and renewable energy goals. The Clean Energy Standard will create major new investment opportunities and impact the wholesale power markets in significant ways, says Eric Runge of Day Pitney LLP.

  • Opinion

    Time Limit On Asbestos Depositions Threatens Due Process

    Freddy Fonseca

    California’s Senate Bill 632 seeks to impose a seven-hour limit on depositions in asbestos cases at the expense of defendants’ due process rights. All defendants maintain an interest in properly and fairly preparing their defense, and no party should be required to jeopardize that right, says Freddy Fonseca of Manion Gaynor & Manning LLP.

  • A Guide To The Executive Branch Official Nomination Process

    Adam Raviv

    Although the Trump administration has completed the vetting and confirmation of a cabinet and White House staff, thousands of senior positions remain unfilled throughout the executive branch. More than ever, people selected for those posts find themselves under close scrutiny, say Adam Raviv and Reginald Brown of WilmerHale.