Environmental

  • January 3, 2018

    Water Chemicals Exec Cops To Bid-Rigging Scheme In NJ

    A former water treatment chemicals executive on Wednesday admitted to his role in a bid-rigging scheme that eliminated competition for sales of a chemical used by municipalities and pulp and paper companies throughout the United States, according to federal prosecutors.

  • January 3, 2018

    Canada Court OKs US Resident Tribe Member's Right To Hunt

    The high court of British Columbia has upheld the acquittal of a Washington state tribal member on charges stemming from an elk he killed in the province in 2010. 

  • January 3, 2018

    No Basis For FERC Eminent Domain Fight, Pipeline Cos. Say

    Developers of two East Coast pipelines have urged a D.C. federal judge to nix a landowner coalition’s suit claiming the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s permitting process unconstitutionally allows developers to seize property through eminent domain, arguing the landowners are trying to short-circuit FERC’s authority to review pipelines.

  • January 3, 2018

    Jersey City Sues NJ, Developer Over Marina Plan

    A New Jersey state court judge on Tuesday granted Jersey City’s emergent request to halt a controversial proposal for the construction of a marina on state-owned land while the city proceeds with its lawsuit alleging the project would compromise the public purpose of a historic park.

  • January 3, 2018

    Ill. Nuclear Subsidy Row May Be Better For FERC: 7th Circ.

    A group of power producers challenging an Illinois law providing clean-energy subsidies to a pair of nuclear power plants in the state took their case to the Seventh Circuit on Wednesday, but at least one judge on the panel seemed skeptical that the court should decide the dispute.

  • January 3, 2018

    Alissa Starzak Talks Net Neutrality, US Army, Leap To Startup

    Cloudflare Inc.'s Alissa Starzak discusses her former role as general counsel for the U.S. Army and the lengthy confirmation process leading up to it, as well as her present work in the private sector and views of net neutrality.

  • January 3, 2018

    Duane Morris Nabs Former Sedgwick Trial Pros In Calif.

    Duane Morris LLP has hired a pair of former Sedgwick LLP trial lawyers to bolster its West Coast presence in its second batch of hires from the defunct firm, adding the new partners in its San Francisco and Los Angeles offices, according to a Wednesday announcement.

  • January 3, 2018

    Del. Tells EPA It Will Sue Over Stalling On CAA Enforcement

    Delaware said Wednesday that it would sue the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, alleging in four notices that the agency isn’t acting on the state’s requests for a determination about whether four out-of-state power plants are violating the Clean Air Act by emitting pollution that drifts into Delaware.

  • January 3, 2018

    Pa. DEP Slams Brakes On Sunoco Pipeline Construction

    The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection on Wednesday halted construction of the Mariner East 2 pipeline, dinging project developer Sunoco Pipeline LP for a slew of environmental law violations in the latest black eye for the controversial project.

  • January 2, 2018

    Justices Asked To Review Revival Of Flint Water Suits

    The city of Flint and a group of Michigan Department of Environmental Quality employees are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to review a Sixth Circuit decision reviving a pair of proposed class actions stemming from the city’s water contamination crisis, arguing that the suits are preempted by the Safe Drinking Water Act.

  • January 2, 2018

    Utility Co. Beats Enviros' Pollution Suit Over Ky. Plant

    A Kentucky federal judge has tossed the Sierra Club and Kentucky Waterways Alliance’s lawsuit against Kentucky Utilities Co., in which the groups alleged violations of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act and the Clean Water Act at the company’s coal-fired power plant on the banks of Herrington Lake.

  • January 2, 2018

    Travelers On Hook In $9M Enviro Deal, Ill. Appeals Court Says

    Although there are no existing copies of the policies in question, Travelers Indemnity Co. can’t dodge liability in a pair of environmental lawsuits against a trucking company that settled for $9 million, an Illinois state appellate court said Friday.

  • January 2, 2018

    No Holiday Break For The Energy Sector As 2017 Wrapped Up

    Moves by the Trump administration to roll back Obama-era oil and gas regulations as well as blue-state attorneys general launching a new legal salvo against the EPA helped puncture the usual Christmas holiday lull for the energy sector. Here's a recap of major energy-related developments from the final days of 2017.

  • January 2, 2018

    9th Circ. Tells EPA To Get To Work On Lead Paint Standard

    The Ninth Circuit has ordered the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to update lead-based paint and dust lead hazard standards, finding that the agency unreasonably delayed acting on environmentalists’ petition for a review.

  • January 2, 2018

    10th Circ. Won't Sanction Caddo Tribe In History Center Suit

    A Tenth Circuit panel on Tuesday refused to sanction the Caddo Nation of Oklahoma for allegedly making factual misstatements in an earlier filing in a dispute with the Wichita and Affiliated Tribes over the latter’s building of a history center on disputed land.

  • January 2, 2018

    Mass. Town Must Let Enbridge Unit Build Station, Judge Says

    A Massachusetts federal judge sided with an Enbridge Inc. unit on Friday by holding that federal energy law preempted the town of Weymouth's decision to deny Algonquin Gas Transmission LLC permission to build a compressor station there as part of the Atlantic Bridge natural gas pipeline project.

  • January 2, 2018

    NJ Justices Mull Breadth Of Farmland Preservation Rules

    The New Jersey Supreme Court on Tuesday questioned the broadness of the state’s environmental regulations for earth-moving activities on preserved farmland, suggesting that more specifics could have guided a farmer accused of destroying land by stripping it of topsoil to build greenhouses.

  • January 2, 2018

    Industry Groups Urge Justices To Hear Right-Of-Way Case

    Electric utility, oil and gas industry groups have told the U.S. Supreme Court that the Tenth Circuit got it wrong when it ruled in May that a New Mexico utility couldn’t condemn land for a power line because the Navajo Nation held an interest there.

  • January 2, 2018

    Solar Panel Imports Took US By Surprise, ITC Finds

    The U.S. International Trade Commission has concluded that the sudden surge in solar cell imports from China was an “unforeseen development,” a crucial finding in its investigation on behalf of two domestic manufacturers seeking the application of a rarely used global safeguard tariff.

  • January 1, 2018

    Environmental Regulation And Legislation To Watch In 2018

    The Trump administration started off 2017 promising rescissions and rollbacks of Obama-era rules and has already nixed some and launched agency reviews of others. That deregulatory push will likely gain momentum in 2018 as key agency posts are filled and leaders focus on revisiting climate change, water, fossil fuel and automotive regulations.

Expert Analysis

  • Opinion

    We Need A Green Amendment

    Maya van Rossum

    Instead of pleading with lawmakers to do the right thing, constitutional amendments would elevate environmental rights to the status of our most cherished liberties, says Maya van Rossum, leader of the Delaware Riverkeeper Network and director of the Environmental Law Clinic at Temple’s Beasley School of Law.

  • FERC Passive Interest Order May Streamline Approvals

    Seth Lucia

    The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission recently clarified that it will not treat certain passive tax equity interests in public utilities as voting securities that require transaction approval pursuant to the Federal Power Act. But firms may continue to file for approval out of an abundance of caution, say attorneys with Bracewell LLP.

  • The Billing Evolution: How Far Along Is Your Firm?

    Sharon Quaintance

    In a recent study, 20 out of 25 law firms surveyed have made billing process improvement a top priority for 2018. Firms can foster consistency and increase efficiency at all stages of their billing cycle by focusing on a few specific procedures, say Sharon Quaintance and Christine Indiano at HBR Consulting.

  • 10 Tips For Effective Practice Before The 5th Circ.

    Justin Woodard

    The Fifth Circuit is among the busiest federal circuit courts in the country. What can you do to increase your chances of reaching oral argument? And if given the opportunity, how can you present a persuasive argument? Former Fifth Circuit clerk Justin Woodard, an associate at Jones Walker LLP, shares some advice.

  • Clarifying CERCLA Allocation For Gov't Contractors

    Thomas Dimond

    Following the Ninth Circuit's recent decision in TDY Holdings v. U.S., government contractors and others whose property and equipment was used to support wartime production should be aware of several factors that could determine whether you obtain significant Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act contribution from the federal government, say Thomas Dimond and Kelsey Weyhing of Ice Miller LLP.

  • Series

    Judging A Book: Saris Reviews 'Locking Up Our Own'

    Judge Patti Saris

    Having just completed a six-year term as chair of the U.S. Sentencing Commission, I read Yale Law School professor James Forman's new book, "Locking Up Our Own: Crime and Punishment in Black America," with particular interest, says Judge Patti Saris, chief judge for the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts.

  • Examining End Of EPA's 'Sue And Settle' Practice

    Maureen Mitchell

    With the stated intention of promoting transparency and public participation in the process of resolving lawsuits brought against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Administrator Scott Pruitt recently issued a directive to end the “sue and settle” practices within the agency. But whether the directive will provide relief for the EPA from the policy is debatable, says Maureen Mitchell of Fox Rothschild LLP.

  • Remaining Questions About US Paris Agreement Withdrawal

    Silvia Maciunas

    Last week’s annual meeting of the 23rd Conference of the Parties addressed, among other issues, implementation of the Paris climate change agreement. The U.S. has already submitted a notification of its intention to withdraw from the agreement, but because it has been submitted early, it is unclear whether it will satisfy the withdrawal requirements, says Silvia Maciunas of The Centre for International Governance Innovation.

  • Roundup

    Judging A Book

    Gorsuch: The Judge Who Speaks For Himself

    Are the latest books on the judicial system worth reading? Federal judges share their thoughts in this series of book reviews.

  • Don't Waste This Planning Cycle: Year-End Strategies

    Hugh A. Simons

    Law firms are businesses where partners operate with significant autonomy. To see their priorities translate into individual partner action, firm leaders should use a few collaborative strategies, suggests Hugh A. Simons, former senior partner of The Boston Consulting Group and former COO of Ropes & Gray LLP.