Environment, Land & Resources

Category Archives: Air Quality and Climate Change

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Webcast: Wildfire Implications on California Development

Developers and municipalities must continue to evaluate potential wildfire impacts on projects under CEQA and consider recent legislative changes. By Marc T. Campopiano and Shivaun A. Cooney Wildfires have posed increasing risks in recent years to the public and environment in California. The importance of understanding how wildfires may impact new development and infrastructure is … Continue Reading

UK Government Launches Hydrogen Strategy and Business Model Consultation

Strategy positions UK as a world leader in the hydrogen space, supporting 9,000 plus jobs and unlocking £4 billion in investment by 2030. By Paul Davies, John-Patrick Sweny, and James Bee On 17 August 2021, the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) published the UK’s first Hydrogen Strategy (the Strategy). The Strategy sets … Continue Reading

China’s National ETS Launches Trading

The start of trading represents a significant opportunity for businesses able to achieve meaningful reductions. By Paul A. Davies and R. Andrew Westgate Nearly four years after China’s national emissions trading scheme (ETS) was announced in late 2017, trading of emissions quotas officially commenced on July 16. The start of trading represents a significant step … Continue Reading

TCI Program Established to Reduce Carbon Emissions From Transportation

The program will include a multi-jurisdictional cap-and-invest program and aims to address environmental justice and equity concerns. By Jean-Philippe Brisson, Joshua T. Bledsoe, Benjamin Einhouse, and Brian McCall On December 21, 2020, the Governors of Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut, as well as the Mayor of the District of Columbia, announced that their respective jurisdictions … Continue Reading

Financial Services Trade Organizations Publish Principles for Regulatory Sustainability Transition

The principles are intended to guide the industry’s engagement with policymakers concerning the ongoing economic transition away from carbon. By Paul A. Davies, Jason C. Ewart, and Edward R. Kempson The US Climate Finance Working Group, a group of leading financial services trade associations, has published “Financing a US Transition to a Sustainable Low-Carbon Economy” … Continue Reading

CARB Steers Clean Miles Standard Toward Formal Rulemaking

The agency has further strengthened electrification targets and provided additional details on compliance options for Transportation Network Companies. By Joshua T. Bledsoe, Charles C. Read, and Jen Garlock The California Air Resources Board (CARB) is developing the Clean Miles Standard and Incentive Program (Clean Miles Standard), a first-of-its kind regulation designed to reduce greenhouse gas … Continue Reading

UK to Establish Net Zero Emissions Trading Scheme

The newly published Energy White Paper establishes a domestic trading scheme and sets out plans to clean out energy.  By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green On 14 December 2020, the UK Government published its Energy White Paper (the Paper). The Paper builds on previous green economy plans, setting them “in a long-term strategic … Continue Reading

Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures Publishes 2020 Status Report

The annual report shows a considerable uptake in the adoption of climate-centred financial disclosures. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green The Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) published its Annual Report on TCFD-aligned disclosures by firms (Annual Report), on 29 October 2020. The TCFD was established by the Financial Stability Board (FSB) … Continue Reading

Financial Reporting Council’s Climate Thematic Report Encourages Better Practices in Climate-Change Reporting

The FRC prompts boards, companies, and auditors to improve responses to climate change challenges through improved governance structure and narrative reporting. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green On 10 November 2020, the Financial Reporting Council (FRC) published its findings (the Report) on its thematic review undertaken in 2020, concerning climate-related considerations that various … Continue Reading

EU Commission to Adopt a Regulation on Batteries, Energy Storage, and Electric Vehicle Batteries

The Initiative aims to promote sustainability in both the batteries value chain and the growing electric vehicle market. By Paul A. Davies and Federica Rizzo On 28 May 2020, the European Commission (EC) published its Inception Impact Assessment (IIA) to modernize the EU’s batteries legislation, in particular Directive 2006/66/EC of 6 September 2006 on batteries … Continue Reading

UK Publishes Proposed Emissions Trading System

The proposals outline the potential new UK system after Brexit, which could be linked to the EU Emissions Trading System.  By Paul Davies and Michael Green On 1 June 2020, the UK’s Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) published proposals outlining a new UK-wide Emissions Trading System (UK ETS) contained within a response … Continue Reading

Aftermarket Defeat Devices and the Clean Air Act – Are Citizen Suits A Threat?

A recent federal court decision in Utah renews the question of whether defeat device and tampering prohibitions constitute “an emission standard or limitation”. By Arthur F. Foerster A non-profit citizen group, Utah Physicians for a Healthy Environment, is seeking nearly US$1.5 million in costs and attorneys’ fees after successfully prosecuting a citizen action in Utah federal … Continue Reading

EU Commission Sets out Major Climate and Sustainability Proposals

The EU Commission aims to enshrine into law the 2050 climate-neutrality target and has taken further steps to establish a unified EU “green” classification system. By Paul A. Davies, Michael D. Green, and Federica Rizzo The European Green Deal, presented on 11 December 2019, provides a roadmap with actions aimed at boosting the efficient use of resources and the … Continue Reading

FAQ: EU Commission’s New Circular Economy Action Plan

The Action Plan is part of the European Green Deal promoting actions to boost the efficient use of resources by moving to a cleaner and more competitive Europe. By Paul A. Davies, Michael D. Green and Federica Rizzo On 11 March 2020, the European Commission published its Communication to the European Parliament, the Council, the European … Continue Reading

Judicial Review of Heathrow Expansion Is Successful on Climate Change Grounds

The Airports National Policy Statement is ruled illegal as a result of government failure to take account of its Paris Agreement commitments. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green In R (Plan B Earth and Others) v. Secretary of State for Transport and others, the Court of Appeal in England (the Court) heard an … Continue Reading

EU Launches €1 Trillion European Green Deal Investment Plan

The European Commission has also established a mechanism to assist the transition of regions that will be more profoundly impacted by the 2050 carbon-neutrality target. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green On 11 December 2019, the European Union announced that it would enshrine into legislation its goal to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050 … Continue Reading

Dutch Supreme Court Confirms Government’s Obligation to Reduce Emissions

Court finds the Netherlands’ 20% greenhouse gas emissions target to be unacceptable, citing the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the ECHR. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green On 20 December 2019, the Dutch Supreme Court upheld the Court of Appeal ruling in the Urgenda case, determining that the Dutch State was … Continue Reading

IMO 2020: New Shipping Fuel Requirements Enter Into Force

Ship owners face increased compliance costs with lowering of sulphur oxide limit for shipping fuels. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green January 1, 2020 marked the implementation of the new sulphur oxide limit for shipping fuel imposed by the International Maritime Organisation under the MARPOL Convention, often referred to as IMO 2020. IMO … Continue Reading
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