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Newsletter Articles

BLM Revises Draft Regulations Governing Hydraulic Fracturing on Public and Tribal Lands: Comments Due August 23

July 15, 2013

The Bureau of Land Management is seeking comments on its revised proposal to regulate hydraulic fracturing (fracking) on federal and tribal lands.[1] The comment period runs through August 23, 201 More

Climate Change: U.S. Supreme Court Holds Federal Law Preempts Los Angeles Port Program, Signaling Close Scrutiny of State and Local Initiatives to Regulate Trucking

July 1, 2013

For the second time this term, on June 13, 2013, the U.S. Supreme Court addressed the scope of the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act of 1994 (“FAAAA” or “Act”), which largely deregulated trucking.[1] In American Trucking Associations, Inc. v. More

APA: The Scorecard So Far on the Supreme Court’s Sackett Decision

June 24, 2013

Just over a year ago, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Sackett v. EPA,[1] which struck down the ban on “pre-enforcement review” of EPA orders issued under the Clean Water Act (“CWA”). More

Clean Water Act: EPA Has After-The-Fact Veto Authority Over Corps of Engineers’ Water Quality Permit

June 21, 2013

A three-judge panel of the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals, reversing a lower court, has held for the first time that EPA has express authority under the Clean Water Act (CWA)[1] to veto a Section 404 dredge and fill permit that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) had issued years earlier. More

Clean Water Act: Sixth Circuit to Decide Whether NPDES General Permit Shields Wastewater Dischargers from Suits for Pollutants Not Specifically Identified

June 13, 2013

An appeal before the Sixth Circuit, Sierra Club v. ICG Hazard, addresses whether an entity in compliance with a general permit under the Clean Water Act’s (CWA) National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) program may yet be subject to a citizen suit or enforcement action for discharges of any pollutants that are not explicitly covered by the permit. More

Clean Air Act: EPA Proposes to Update Performance Standards for Kraft Pulp Mills

June 13, 2013

The Environmental Protection Agency has proposed an update to the new source performance standard (“NSPS”) applicable to the approximately 100 kraft pulp mills operating in the United States.[1] The proposed rule would set more stringent emissions standards for chemical recovery combustion sources at the mills that are constructed, modified or reconstructed More

Ninth Circuit Chides Agencies for Using Consent Decree to Circumvent Rulemaking

May 23, 2013

A recent Ninth Circuit decision calls into question the government’s practice of using consent decrees in a judicial proceeding to set policy for parties nationwide in environmental matters. In Conservation Northwest v. Sherman (Conservation Northwest II), No. 11-35729, 2013 WL 1760807 (9th Cir. Apr. More

Stricter Water Quality Standards for Temperature May Be Coming to Oregon

May 23, 2013

After rejecting revisions to Oregon’s water quality standards last year, a federal court has now approved two related settlements reached among EPA, the Oregon Department of Environmental Quality (ODEQ), and an environmental group that effectively amend the existing standards. More