Environmental

  • December 19, 2017

    Contractor Looks To Escape Suit Over Gold King Mine

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency contractor Environmental Restoration LLC urged a federal judge on Monday to let it out of Utah’s suit over the company’s role in the 2015 Gold King Mine spill, saying that the state’s claims under a federal Superfund law should get tossed.

  • December 19, 2017

    NY Times Sues DOI Over Utah Monument Doc Request

    The New York Times Co. hit the U.S. Department of the Interior with a Freedom of Information Act suit Monday in New York federal court, alleging that the agency has failed to fork over documents related to a national monument in Utah that the federal government plans to shrink dramatically.

  • December 18, 2017

    10th Circ. Lets Enviros Into Oil Group’s BLM Auction Suit

    A split Tenth Circuit panel overturned a lower court Monday and said environmental groups had the right to intervene in Western Energy Alliance’s suit alleging the Bureau of Land Management wasn’t conducting enough lease sales, ruling the Trump administration’s policy shifts showed it wouldn’t necessarily represent environmentalists’ views.

  • December 18, 2017

    The Biggest Pennsylvania Policy Developments Of 2017

    For the second time in three years, the fight over the state budget was the biggest battle in Harrisburg in 2017, revealing divisions not only between Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf and Republican majorities in the General Assembly but also between Republican leadership in the House and Senate. But the impasse was ultimately resolved with a significant expansion of gambling in the state.

  • December 18, 2017

    EPA Seeks Suggestions For Clean Power Plan Replacement

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said Monday that it will seek public input on the Trump administration’s replacement for Clean Power Plan regulations, which the White House put on the chopping block earlier this year.

  • December 18, 2017

    Ex-Pillsbury Enviro Partner Joins Holland & Knight In Calif.

    Holland & Knight LLP has picked up a former Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP attorney who has a history of focusing on environmental matters, the firm announced Monday.

  • December 18, 2017

    Tribal History Center's Completion Moots Appeal: 10th Circ.

    The Tenth Circuit tossed the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma’s challenge to a lower court’s ruling allowing the Wichita and Affiliated Tribes to continue building a history center on disputed land, holding in a Monday published decision that the appeal is moot because the facility has been completed.

  • December 18, 2017

    SoCalGas Off The Hook For Business Losses From Gas Leak

    A California appellate court ruled Friday that Southern California Gas Co. is not liable for economic losses suffered by businesses near the massive 2015 Aliso Canyon gas leak, finding the company did not have a relationship with those businesses under which it could be expected to protect them from harm.

  • December 18, 2017

    SunEdison Yieldco Settles Investor MDL For $57M

    A SunEdison yieldco on Friday said it had reached a $57 million settlement of multidistrict investor litigation claiming the renewable energy giant tried to stave off its bankruptcy with its yieldcos’ money.

  • December 18, 2017

    MVP: Blank Rome's Robert Scott

    Blank Rome LLP’s Robert Scott had a hand in a number of important environmental matters this year, including leading the defense of Eastman Chemical Co. in a West Virginia coal-processing chemical spill class action and helping secure the development of a $6 billion ethane gas complex in western Pennsylvania for a Royal Dutch Shell PLC unit, earning him a place as one of Law360’s 2017 Environmental MVPs.

  • December 18, 2017

    The Biggest​ NJ​​ Policy Developments Of 2017

    New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie signed off on legislative measures this year to combat the nation's opioid epidemic and legalize daily fantasy sports games while rejecting an initiative barring employers from asking job applicants about their salary history, as state environmental regulators revised standards affecting companies' soil cleanup costs.

  • December 18, 2017

    India Scraps Solar Energy Rules Following WTO Loss

    The Indian government has withdrawn a series of solar energy rules deemed to be illegal trade barriers by the World Trade Organization in an effort to fend off costly retaliation from the U.S., according to a brief notification circulated Monday.

  • December 15, 2017

    Brothers Will See Jail Time Over Turtle Trafficking

    Two brothers who admitted to trafficking alligator snapping turtles can’t escape without a bite, a Texas federal judge held Friday, ordering them to serve 21 months and 16 months in prison, respectively, for illegally taking and selling members of the threatened species.

  • December 15, 2017

    Texas Justices Keep Noble On The Hook For $63M Indemnity

    The Texas Supreme Court on Friday declined to revisit its decision that Noble Energy Inc. has to indemnify ConocoPhillips in connection with $63 million in environmental cleanup costs despite arguments that Noble’s predecessor wasn’t properly told about the indemnity agreement.

  • December 15, 2017

    Pearson Simon, Burns Charest To Lead German Auto MDL

    A California federal judge on Thursday picked attorneys from Pearson Simon & Warshaw LLP and Burns Charest LLP as co-lead counsel for plaintiffs in multidistrict litigation accusing Audi, BMW, Volkswagen and other German automakers of a decadeslong antitrust conspiracy covering car technology, costs, suppliers and emissions equipment.

  • December 15, 2017

    AGs Oppose EPA, Corps Proposal To Delay Clean Water Rule

    Attorneys general from states including New York, California and Massachusetts have told the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers that they “strongly oppose” the proposed postponement of an Obama-era rule defining the federal government’s jurisdiction under the Clean Water Act.

  • December 15, 2017

    Toss Of Duke Energy Investor Suit Upheld By Del. Justices

    The Delaware Supreme Court affirmed the dismissal of an investor breach of duty suit against the directors of Duke Energy on Friday, saying in a 4-1 split opinion that the Court of Chancery was correct in tossing the suit because the plaintiffs hadn't shown that a litigation demand on the board was futile.

  • December 15, 2017

    The Biggest Environmental Rulings Of 2017

    Courts answered several important environmental law questions in 2017, including how the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency may regulate recycling and hydrofluorocarbons, and how the effects of greenhouse gases must be factored into project analyses. Here are the biggest rulings in environmental cases from 2017.

  • December 15, 2017

    EPA Stalling On Good Neighbor Enforcement, Delaware Says

    Delaware on Thursday said that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's bid to nix a suit claiming it failed to act on petitions seeking to force it to curb pollution seeping across Delaware's border from power plants in neighboring states is merely another unlawful delay tactic.

  • December 15, 2017

    A Chat With Orrick COO Laura Saklad

    In this new monthly series, legal recruiting experts Amanda Brady and Amy Mallow of Major Lindsey & Africa interview law firm management from Am Law 200 firms about how they are navigating an increasingly competitive business environment. The first conversation is with Laura Saklad, chief operations officer for Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP.

Expert Analysis

  • What Companies Should Know About TSCA Consent Orders

    Martha Marrapese

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's use of consent orders under the Toxic Substances Control Act and the significant new use rules that follow are catching companies off guard as they cascade through the supply chain. Martha Marrapese of Wiley Rein LLP explains considerations that go into negotiating consent orders for new chemicals and the requirements that flow from them.

  • Recipe For Legal Project Management: Look To BBQ Champs

    Anthony Rospert

    As a master certified barbecue judge with the Kansas City Barbeque Society, I have noticed that the top pitmasters follow a consistent process in approaching each and every competition. Their "secret sauce" — employing project management principles — can also help lawyers achieve success, says Anthony Rospert of Thompson Hine LLP.

  • Massachusetts Online Permitting Increases Transparency

    Jeanine Grachuk

    Finally catching up with many states that have made it possible to apply for and review permits online, Massachusetts’ Energy and Environmental Information Public Access System went online last month. The system promises improved accessibility to the permitting process, but still shows growing pains and limitations, says Jeanine Grachuk of Beveridge & Diamond PC.

  • Series

    Making Pro Bono Work: Can You Practice In Your State?

    Eve Runyon

    The justice gap is a well-documented problem and over the past two decades, law firms have mobilized attorneys to provide millions of hours of pro bono every year. But for many in-house counsel, there remains a big hurdle — restrictive multijurisdictional practice rules, says Eve Runyon, president and CEO of Pro Bono Institute.

  • Opinion

    Representing Women At The Intersection Of Law And Finance

    Andrea Mitchell

    To the extent that companies have tolerated predominantly male leadership in the past because it was deemed necessary for growth and prosperity, or viewed diversity and the underrepresentation of women strictly as human resources issues, a growing body of research suggests otherwise, say Andrea Mitchell and Valerie Hletko of Buckley Sandler LLP.

  • Series

    Making Pro Bono Work: Building Sponsorship Relationships

    Michael Scudder

    Within their first year, associates should make it a priority to take on a pro bono matter and approach a partner about supervising the project. By collaborating with a partner on a pro bono case, young associates can cultivate sponsorship relationships while simultaneously contributing to the public good, say Michael Scudder and Jay Mitchell of Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP.

  • Insurance Advice For Recovery After The Smoke Settles

    Peter Gillon

    As businesses begin to recover following the Sonoma County fires, they will be confronted by a number of critical issues when trying to mitigate their losses. Early attention to these issues and key guiding principles will help maximize insurance recovery, say Peter Gillon and Ashley Cowgill of Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP.

  • Clean Water Act Challenges To Pipeline Projects: Part 2

    Joel Beauvais

    A slew of recent court rulings have addressed challenges to state pipeline permitting decisions under the Clean Water Act. The cases include industry appeals of high-profile permit denials by the state of New York, and environmental groups' objections to project certifications by other states. These rulings set important precedents, say Joel Beauvais and Janna Chesno of Latham & Watkins LLP.

  • Series

    What I Learned In My 1st Year: Be A Sponge

    Patrick Mendes

    As a new attorney, it was astonishing to realize how little I knew. I soon began to appreciate that everyone I met had a unique take or way of doing something. Many things I learned during that first year from my colleagues are still incorporated into my practice today, says Patrick Mendes of Tyson & Mendes LLP.

  • Series

    Making Pro Bono Work: Beyond The Hurdles

    Ann Warren

    There are various barriers to corporate pro bono work, including lack of malpractice insurance coverage, limited resources, and the transactional nature of the majority of in-house legal work. But at the end of the day, we’ve overcome many of these barriers, says Ann Warren, associate general counsel of Duke Energy Corp.