Environment, Land & Resources

Category Archives: Environmental Regulation

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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

Trends in Public Utility Regulation: 5 Developments at the California Public Utilities Commission

Wildfires, ride-sharing, community choice aggregation, and more bring increased regulatory risk. By Marc T. Campopiano, Charles C. Read, and Brian F. McCall The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) has tremendous influence on public utility regulation in California and beyond. The CPUC has the biggest staff of any state utilities commission and has issued fines and … Continue Reading

New Amendments to Prop 65 Regulations Aim to Clarify Warning Responsibility

The new amendments seek to clarify the division of responsibility for providing warnings among upstream entities, intermediaries, and retailers. By: Michael G. Romey, Lucas I. Quass, and Kevin A. Homrighausen On April 1, 2020, new amendments to the implementation regulations of California’s Safe Drinking Water and Toxic Enforcement Act of 1986 (Prop 65 Regulations) will … Continue Reading

Financing the Road to Green

How companies that are unable to issue green bonds can still participate in sustainable finance. By Paul A. Davies, Aaron E. Franklin, and Kristina S. Wyatt If the 2010s were the decade in which green bonds took hold, the 2020s will be the decade in which sustainable finance hits the broader marketplace. The green bond … 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

EPA’s Proposed Coal Ash Permit Program: 6 Key Points

The proposed federal permitting regime includes some surprising provisions, including no permit expiration and no proposed application deadline for most units. By Claudia M. O’Brien and Stacey L. VanBelleghem On December 19, 2019, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a proposed rule to establish a federal permitting program under the Resource Conservation and Recovery … Continue Reading

EU Commission Formally Announces European Green Deal

Analysing whether the new Green Deal policies will help the EU achieve climate neutrality.  By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green On 11 December 2019, the European Commission adopted the European Green Deal (Green Deal), initially proposed earlier in the year by the Commission’s President Ursula von der Leyen. The Commission also presented a … Continue Reading

TCI Releases Framework for Draft Policy to Reduce GHG Emissions From Transportation

Under the TCI program, fuel suppliers would be required to hold allowances to cover their reported emissions. By Jean-Philippe Brisson, Joshua T. Bledsoe, and Benjamin W. Einhouse The Transportation & Climate Initiative (TCI), a regional collaboration of Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states and the District of Columbia, has advanced its program to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) … Continue Reading

Air District Targets Southern California Logistics Industry

A local air district is developing a rule that would require both existing and proposed warehouses to reduce trucking emissions or pay a mitigation fee. By Joshua T. Bledsoe The South Coast Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD or District) is developing a so-called Indirect Source Rule (ISR) that would require Southern California warehouses to reduce … Continue Reading

New Multi-Target French Climate Energy Package Boosts Objectives

The legislation includes six key measures to cut greenhouse gas emissions and to reach carbon neutrality by 2050. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green The French Parliament has adopted a new climate energy package to tackle the effects of climate change and boost France’s energy transition endeavors to reach carbon neutrality by 2050. … Continue Reading

UK Releases New Details on Net Zero Target Measures

The announcements signal how both the Net Zero Review and the IETF will impact the UK’s transition to net zero. By Paul Davies and Michael Green On 2 November 2019, the UK government announced further details on two initiatives focused on helping the UK reach net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The first of … Continue Reading

UK Government Outlines New Powers and Regulations in Environment Bill

The Bill proposes a post-Brexit system of environmental governance to oversee new powers and regulations in four environmental law areas. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green On 15 October 2019, the UK government published the final draft of Environment Bill 2019–20 (the Bill), which aims to set out the government’s environmental priorities post-Brexit. … Continue Reading

EU Issues Final Report on Climate Benchmarks and ESG Disclosures

Technical Expert Group recommends minimum requirements for two new benchmarks. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green On 30 September 2019, the EU Technical Expert Group on Sustainable Finance (TEG) published its final report on climate benchmarks and environmental, social, and governance (ESG) disclosures (the Report), as well as a summary of the Report. … Continue Reading

German Government Adopts Climate Action Programme 2030

The Programme includes a new CO2 pricing regime aimed at emissions caused by the building sector and by traffic and transport. By Jörn Kassow On 20 September 2019, the German government adopted the Climate Action Programme 2030, a plan to ensure that Germany achieves its climate protection goals for 2030, including a reduction of greenhouse … Continue Reading

EPA to Cease Issuing CBI Notices of Deficiency Under TSCA

EPA’s new policy may result in public disclosure of confidential business information if confidentiality is not properly claimed. By Julia A. Hatcher, Ann Claassen, and Stijn van Osch The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced on July 15, 2019 that, beginning August 15, 2019, EPA would no longer provide notices of deficiency to businesses that … Continue Reading

US House Financial Services Committee Holds Landmark Hearing on ESG Reporting

Building a sustainable and competitive economy: an examination of proposals to improve ESG disclosures. By James R. Barrett, Paul A. Davies and Kristina S. Wyatt The US House Committee on Financial Services, Subcommittee on Investor Protection, Entrepreneurship, and Capital Markets has held the first ever US Congressional hearing on environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues. … Continue Reading

China Publishes Public Consultation on Environmental Protection Regulations for Construction Projects

MEE Opinions aim to clarify application of laws, expand the scope of illegal behaviour, and introduce new administrative penalties. By Paul A. Davies and R. Andrew Westgate The Department of Laws, Regulations, and Standards of China’s Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) recently issued a notice of Public Consultation for the Opinions on Several Issues … Continue Reading
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