Environment, Land & Resources

Category Archives: Environmental Regulation

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China and EU to Collaborate on Green Investment Standards

The People’s Bank of China announced a collaboration with the European Union to adopt a common taxonomy for green investments. By Paul A. Davies, Nicola Higgs, and Edward R. Kempson On 21 March 2021, the People’s Bank of China (PBC) announced that China is working with the European Union to adopt a common green taxonomy … 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

CEQA Case Report: 2020 Year in Review

Public agencies prevailed in 68% of CEQA cases analyzed. By James L. Arnone, Daniel P. Brunton, Nikki Buffa, Marc T. Campopiano, and Winston P. Stromberg Latham & Watkins is pleased to present its fourth annual CEQA Case Report. Throughout 2020 Latham lawyers reviewed each of the 34 California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) appellate cases, whether … Continue Reading

Flexibility in Sustainable Finance

Recent developments show how innovative sustainable finance instruments can help the transition to greener financial markets. By Paul A. Davies and Edward R. Kempson The EU Taxonomy Regulation[1] (the Regulation), which entered into force in July 2020, is one of the most significant developments in sustainable finance. The Regulation creates a classification system for green … Continue Reading

EPA Begins Term With Congressional Mandate to Phase Down HFCs

The agency’s rulemaking to implement the AIM Act will offer stakeholders opportunities to shape a new market-based mechanism to reduce HFCs. By Jean-Philippe Brisson, Stacey VanBelleghem, and Zaheer Tajani Tucked inside the US$900 billion COVID-19 relief package signed into law on December 27, 2020, is a regulatory opportunity for the climate-focused Biden Administration: the American … Continue Reading

Proposed Amendments to Prop 65 Regulations Clarify and Update Proper Use of Short-Form Product Warnings

The proposed amendments seek to clarify when short-form product warnings may be used and create new requirements for information about harmful chemicals. By Michael G. Romey, Lucas I. Quass, and Kevin Homrighausen Update: On February 19, 2021, OEHHA announced that the public comment period has been extended until March 29, 2021. OEHHA also scheduled a … 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

DC Circuit Overturns Trump Administration Power Plant Rule

The decision clears a path for President Biden’s climate priorities, striking down a Trump Administration rule that had repealed the Obama Administration’s power plant greenhouse gas regulations. By Stacey L. VanBelleghem and Devin M. O’Connor On January 19, 2021, on the eve of President Biden’s inauguration, in American Lung Association, et al. v. EPA, the … Continue Reading

Sustainability Organisations Publish Draft Climate-Related Disclosure Standards

Consortium provides prototype climate-related financial disclosure standards, following earlier pledge to collaborate. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green A group of leading sustainability and integrated reporting organisations has published a paper addressing standards for reporting on enterprise value and presenting prototypes of climate-related financial disclosure standards (the Paper). The co-authors include the Carbon … Continue Reading

FCA Enhances Climate-Related Disclosures for Listed Companies

New rule will require listed companies to state whether they have made disclosures in accordance with the TCFD. By Paul A. Davies, Nicola Higgs, Chris Horton, and Michael D. Green On 21 December 2020, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) confirmed in a published Policy Statement[1] (the Statement) that it will introduce a new Listing Rule … Continue Reading

EPA Updates Aftermarket Defeat Device Enforcement Policy

EPA provides more detailed guidance on aftermarket safe zones while continuing to drive forward enforcement initiatives. By Arthur F. Foerster In 2019, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its “National Compliance Initiatives” (NCIs) for years 2020-2023. EPA sets NCIs for what the agency believes are “the most serious environmental violations.”[1] One of those NCIs … Continue Reading

European Commission Reports on Climate Change Progress

A new report shows headway in reducing greenhouse gases and details the latest climate change policy developments. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green On 30 November 2020, the European Commission (EC) adopted the EU Climate Action Progress Report Kick-starting the journey towards a climate-neutral Europe by 2050 (the Report). The Report, which is … Continue Reading

SASB and IIRC Announce Their Intention to Merge

The Sustainability Accounting Standards Board and the International Integrated Reporting Council merger aims to streamline ESG reporting to improve data for investors. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green On 25 November 2020, the Sustainability Accounting Standards Board (SASB) and the International Integrated Reporting Council (IIRC) announced that they are merging into a unified … Continue Reading

Changing of the Guard at the SEC Heralds New Day for ESG Disclosure Rules

As Chairman Clayton reaches the end of his tenure, Commissioners Lee and Crenshaw continue to push for SEC action on climate change. By Paul A. Davies, Paul M. Dudek, Ryan J. Maierson, and Kristina S. Wyatt Background In recent years, the market has witnessed a sharp divide both within the US Securities and Exchange Commission … Continue Reading

FRC Launches Consultation on the Future of Corporate Reporting

The UK’s Financial Reporting Council aims to develop a principles-based framework for corporate reporting. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green The UK’s Financial Reporting Council (FRC) has published a discussion paper, “A Matter of Principles — The Future of Corporate Reporting,” that aims to “provide thought leadership for the future of corporate reporting … Continue Reading

Climate Assembly UK Publishes 2050 Net Zero Target Recommendations

The UK citizens’ assembly identifies overarching principles and makes specific recommendations for achieving the environmental goal. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green Background The Climate Assembly UK has published its report on how the UK can achieve its statutory target for net zero carbon emissions by 2050. The report, which was released on … Continue Reading

California to Require 100% Zero-Emission Passenger Vehicle Sales by 2035

The Governor has issued an Executive Order with sweeping implications for the oil and gas industry and others. By Jean-Philippe Brisson, Joshua T. Bledsoe, Nikki Buffa, and Brian F. McCall On September 23, 2020, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed Executive Order N-79-20, which will have sweeping implications for the oil and gas industry, automakers, low-carbon … Continue Reading

US Department of Labor Continues to Double Down on ESG Factors

The DOL proposes rules that would curb proxy voting by plan fiduciaries on shareholder proposals. By Paul A. Davies, Paul M. Dudek, Ryan J. Maierson, and Kristina S. Wyatt Continued DOL Antipathy Toward ESG On August 31, 2020, the US Department of Labor (DOL) issued proposed rules that could induce Employee Retirement Income Security Act … Continue Reading
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