Environmental

  • July 18, 2024

    6th Circ. Looks To Wash Hands Of WOTUS Appeal

    An exasperated Sixth Circuit panel on Thursday looked for an easy way to dispatch Kentucky's and industry groups' appeal of the dismissal of their challenges to a federal government rule defining the scope of the Clean Water Act.

  • July 18, 2024

    Democrats Float Prison Environmental Health Bill

    Congressional Democrats on Thursday proposed legislation that would fund programs to improve air quality, water quality, temperature, mold, contagious diseases and other issues in federal prisons.

  • July 18, 2024

    Refiner, Distributor To Pay $1M Fine In EPA Biofuel Case

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said on Thursday that it has slapped an Arizona-based petroleum products company and its affiliate with a more than $1 million civil penalty for violations of the Clean Air Act's conventional and renewable fuel requirements.

  • July 18, 2024

    Consumers Hit CenterPoint With 2nd Class Action Over Beryl

    CenterPoint Energy Inc. has been hit with a second proposed class action over widespread power outages in the Houston area following Hurricane Beryl, this time from consumers in the Houston-Galveston area who were impacted by the storm.

  • July 18, 2024

    Judge With Lake Property Exits $217M Dam Repair Tax Suit

    A Michigan federal judge said he would step aside in a fight over a $217 million tax assessment to fund dam reconstruction because he's part of the assessment district, though he warned that hundreds plaintiffs could have their own conflicts.

  • July 18, 2024

    King & Spalding Guides Quanta's $1.5B Cupertino Buy

    Houston-based Quanta Services Inc. said Thursday it has acquired fellow energy infrastructure provider Cupertino Electric Inc. for up to $1.54 billion, with King & Spalding LLP and Fenwick & West LLP providing legal counsel on the deal, respectively. 

  • July 18, 2024

    Rising Star: V&E's Corinne Snow

    Corinne Snow of Vinson & Elkins LLP has been at the forefront of the field of environmental regulation throughout her young career, serving in the U.S. Department of Justice and working with water associations in challenging recent regulatory mandates from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, and earning her a spot among the environmental practitioners under age 40 honored by Law360 as Rising Stars.

  • July 17, 2024

    EPA Disputes High Court Link To Texas Clean Air Act Case

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency argued that the U.S. Supreme Court's recent ruling blocking a federal plan to reduce cross-state pollution does not impact the EPA's decision to reject state plans submitted by Texas, Louisiana and Mississippi.

  • July 17, 2024

    MTA Sued For Bus Service Cuts After Congestion Plan Nixed

    New York City's Public Advocate hit the Metropolitan Transportation Authority with a proposed state court class action Wednesday aimed at reversing bus service cuts implemented after Gov. Kathy Hochul abruptly canceled plans for congestion pricing, slashing billions in anticipated revenue for the MTA.

  • July 17, 2024

    Lawmakers Say Bid To Toss Monument Suit Is A 'Red Herring'

    The Arizona Legislature is fighting a bid by the Biden administration to dismiss a challenge to a presidential proclamation that established an Indigenous site as a national monument in the Grand Canyon region, arguing that the state's constitution gives the lawmakers power over state trust lands.

  • July 17, 2024

    DOE Says Challenge Of $1.1B Diablo Canyon Award Must Fail

    The U.S. Department of Energy is urging a California federal judge to throw out a suit challenging its award of $1.1 billion of credits to help Pacific Gas & Electric Co. keep two generation units running for now at the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant.

  • July 17, 2024

    NC Must Use Smithfield Foods Funds For Schools, Judge Says

    North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein can no longer get his hands on $2 million a year from Smithfield Foods to give out environmental grants to private entities after a judge ruled the state constitution requires the money to be used in public schools.

  • July 17, 2024

    Rising Star: Kirkland's Jim Dolphin

    James Dolphin of Kirkland & Ellis LLP's success in helping clients navigate the nuances of environmental law and the energy industry in complex agreements, projects and transactions — including a first-of-its-kind agreement between Chestnut Carbon and Microsoft — has earned him a spot among the environmental law practitioners under age 40 honored by Law360 as Rising Stars.

  • July 17, 2024

    Monsanto Philly Roundup Victory Preserved After Trial

    A Philadelphia state judge declined to overturn a jury verdict in favor of Monsanto in a Pennsylvania cancer patient's lawsuit alleging he developed his illness after using the weed killer Roundup.

  • July 17, 2024

    New Mexico Adds Superfund Claims To PFAS Suit Against US

    New Mexico is expanding its lawsuit against the federal government over costs related to cleaning up forever chemicals near military sites by utilizing a new rule listing the substances as hazardous under the Superfund law.

  • July 16, 2024

    Colombia Ducks Damages In Eco Oro's $700M Mining Claim

    An international tribunal has declined to order Colombia to pay damages to a Canadian precious metals company despite its finding three years ago that the country had breached an underlying treaty, issuing an award Monday that appended a scathing criticism of third-party funding in investor-state cases by arbitrator Philippe Sands.

  • July 16, 2024

    Calif. Tribe Awarded $8.2M Over Destruction Of Cultural Site

    A California district court judge has granted the Quechan Indian Tribe's request for approximately $8.2 million in damages after finding that a federal government construction project damaged cultural and archaeological sites on the tribe's reservation.

  • July 16, 2024

    DC Circ. Knocks La. Site FERC Order, Tosses LNG Export Row

    Two D.C. Circuit panels on Tuesday ruled the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission inadequately explained a failure to assess the significance of greenhouse gas emissions for proposed liquefied natural gas facilities in Louisiana, dismissing a challenge of approvals allowing a Texas project to send more of its LNG exports to nonfree trade agreement countries.

  • July 16, 2024

    Enbridge Seeks 6th Circ. Rehearing In Venue Dispute

    Enbridge Energy LP has asked the full Sixth Circuit to rehear an appellate panel's decision to send the company's pipeline dispute with Michigan's attorney general back to state court, arguing that the opinion creates a conflict within the circuit over when the removal clock starts running.

  • July 16, 2024

    Solar Co. Cites Macquarie In Fight Against Investor Suit

    SolarEdge Technologies Inc. has moved to dismiss a proposed class action accusing it of misrepresenting the demand for its solar energy products in Europe, arguing that investors' claims that it had to make a detailed accounting of its inventory levels and sales practices do not meet the standard set out by the U.S. Supreme Court's recent Macquarie ruling.

  • July 16, 2024

    Influencer's Forest Pics Not 'Work Activity,' 10th Circ. Rules

    A Tenth Circuit panel on Tuesday reversed a social media influencer's conviction for unauthorized work on National Forest Service property after he posted Instagram photos of himself snowmobiling on closed NFS land, finding that the influencer didn't have fair warning that what he was doing might be considered a federal crime.

  • July 16, 2024

    Texas Says Maritime Expert Shouldn't Testify In Barrier Fight

    Texas moved to exclude a maritime expert witness for the U.S. government in its case challenging the state's barrier installed on the Rio Grande aimed at countering increasing migration, arguing on Tuesday the proposed witness, who plans to testify the barrier obstructs navigability, isn't an expert on buoys, booms or floats.

  • July 16, 2024

    Pollution Settlement Will Work To Restore Wash. River Habitat

    An agreement between the federal government, Washington state and two tribes, on one side, and a pair of recycling companies and a metal fabricator on the other will put in place a three-acre habitat restoration project along the Lower Duwamish River in Seattle, resolving claims that oil and hazardous were released into the waters for a decade.

  • July 16, 2024

    Pentagon, GSA Seek 'Record-Setting' Clean Energy Projects

    The U.S. Department of Defense and the U.S. General Services Administration say they are going for "record-setting federal purchases of clean energy" in a joint statement seeking contractors who will be able to get multiple federal facilities running entirely on carbon-pollution-free power by 2030.

  • July 16, 2024

    Puerto Rico Launches Climate Suit Against Fossil Fuel Cos.

    The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico has accused Exxon Mobil Corp., BP PLC, Chevron Corp. and other petrochemical companies of deceiving the public about the effects associated with the use and burning of fossil fuels on the island, resulting in severe damage to Puerto Rico's natural resources.

Expert Analysis

  • Despite Calif. Delays, Climate Disclosure Rules Are Coming

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    Progress continues on state, federal and international climate disclosure regimes, making compliance a key concern for companies — but the timeline for implementation of California's disclosure laws remains unclear due to funding and timing disputes, says David Smith at Manatt Phelps.

  • Decoding Arbitral Disputes: Intra-EU Enforcement Trends

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    Hungary recently declared a distinct stance on the European Court of Justice's 2021 ruling in Moldavia v. Komstroy on intra-EU arbitration under the Energy Charter Treaty, highlighting a critical divergence in the bloc on enforcing investment awards and the complexities of balancing regional uniformity with international obligations, says Josep Galvez at 4-5 Gray's Inn.

  • Opinion

    Now More Than Ever, Lawyers Must Exhibit Professionalism

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    As society becomes increasingly fractured and workplace incivility is on the rise, attorneys must champion professionalism and lead by example, demonstrating how lawyers can respectfully disagree without being disagreeable, says Edward Casmere at Norton Rose.

  • What Happens After Hawaii Kids' Historic Climate Deal

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    Implications of the Hawaii Department of Transportation's first-of-its-kind settlement with youth plaintiffs over constitutional climate claims may be limited, but it could incite similar claims, says J. Michael Showalter and Robert Middleton at ArentFox Schiff.

  • Series

    Serving In The National Guard Makes Me A Better Lawyer

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    My ongoing military experience as a judge advocate general in the National Guard has shaped me as a person and a lawyer, teaching me the importance of embracing confidence, balance and teamwork in both my Army and civilian roles, says Danielle Aymond at Baker Donelson.

  • Big Business May Come To Rue The Post-Administrative State

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    Many have framed the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent decisions overturning Chevron deference and extending the window to challenge regulations as big wins for big business, but sand in the gears of agency rulemaking may be a double-edged sword, creating prolonged uncertainty that impedes businesses’ ability to plan for the future, says Todd Baker at Columbia University.

  • Series

    After Chevron: A Sea Change For Maritime Sector

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    The shipping industry has often looked to the courts for key agency decisions affecting maritime interests, but after the U.S. Supreme Court's Loper Bright ruling, stakeholders may revisit important industry questions and coordinate to bring appropriate challenges and shape rulemaking, say attorneys at Holland & Knight.

  • A Midyear Forecast: Tailwinds Expected For Atty Hourly Rates

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    Hourly rates for partners, associates and support staff continued to rise in the first half of this year, and this growth shows no signs of slowing for the rest of 2024 and into next year, driven in part by the return of mergers and acquisitions and the widespread adoption of artificial intelligence, says Chuck Chandler at Valeo Partners.

  • Tips For Implementing EU Sustainability Reporting Guidance

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    Lawyers at Sullivan & Cromwell discuss the European Financial Reporting Advisory Group’s recently published guidance on double materiality assessments and offer takeaways on achieving a sustainability directive-compliant process that could enhance clarity and consistency among multinational stakeholders.

  • Series

    After Chevron: Creating New Hurdles For ESG Rulemaking

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    The U.S. Supreme Court's Loper Bright decision, limiting court deference to agencies' statutory interpretations, could have significant impacts on the future of ESG regulation, creating new hurdles for agency rulemaking around these emerging issues, and calling into question current administrative actions, says Leah Malone at Simpson Thacher.

  • California Adds A Novel Twist To State Suits Against Big Oil

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    California’s suit against Exxon Mobil Corp., one of several state suits that seek to hold oil and gas companies accountable for climate-related harms, is unique both in the magnitude of the alleged claims and its use of a consumer protection statute to seek disgorgement of industry profits, says Julia Stein at UCLA School of Law.

  • Criminal Enforcement Considerations For Gov't Contractors

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    Government contractors increasingly exposed to criminal liability risks should establish programs that enable detection and remediation of employee misconduct, consider voluntary disclosure, and be aware of the potentially disastrous consequences of failing to make a mandatory disclosure where the government concludes it was required, say attorneys at Crowell & Moring.

  • Opinion

    States Should Loosen Law Firm Ownership Restrictions

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    Despite growing buzz, normalized nonlawyer ownership of law firms is a distant prospect, so the legal community should focus first on liberalizing state restrictions on attorney and firm purchases of practices, which would bolster succession planning and improve access to justice, says Michael Di Gennaro at The Law Practice Exchange.

  • How Attorneys Can Reduce Bad Behavior At Deposition

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    To minimize unprofessional behavior by opposing counsel and witnesses, and take charge of the room at deposition, attorneys should lay out some key ground rules at the outset — and be sure to model good behavior themselves, says John Farrell at Fish & Richardson.

  • FERC Rule Is A Big Step Forward For Transmission Planning

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    The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's recent electric transmission system overhaul marks significant progress to ensure the grid can deliver electricity at reasonable prices, with a 20-year planning requirement and other criteria going further than prior attempted reforms, say Tom Millar and Gwendolyn Hicks at Winston & Strawn.

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