Environment, Land & Resources

Tag Archives: climate change

Is China Relaxing Its Grip on “Iron Fist” Environmental Regulation?

Reports suggest that China’s promising focus on environmental regulation may be slowing amid an economic downturn. By Paul A. Davies and Andrew Westgate Background At the 2014 National People’s Congress, Chinese Premier Li Keqiang’s rhetoric adopting an “iron fist” approach in a “war against pollution” represented a stunning volte-face from China’s relaxed environmental oversight and … Continue Reading

German Government Commission Agrees to Phase Out Coal Power Plants by 2038

The Coal Commission’s phase-out proposal includes a €40 billion federal spending package for affected states. By Jörn Kassow and Patrick Braasch A German government-appointed body, known colloquially as the “Coal Commission”, has agreed to end coal-fired power generation by 2038. In an effort to meet Germany’s climate goals under the Paris Agreement, the Coal Commission … Continue Reading

Circular Economy and End of Waste Status: French Government Issues Criteria and Procedures

Waste producers must comply with new criteria and procedures for objects and products to benefit from end of waste status. By Paul Davies The French government has developed many measures to foster circular economy approaches. Most recently, a Ministerial Order of 11 December 2018 (Order) sets out criteria and procedures to end the waste status … Continue Reading

Amendments to CEQA Guidelines Now in Effect

California Natural Resources Agency adopts final amendments to CEQA Guidelines, providing additional clarifying revisions to GHG impacts, baseline, and deferral of mitigation amendments. By Marc Campopiano, Winston Stromberg, and Samantha Seikkula The California Office of Administrative Law recently approved a suite of amendments to the CEQA Guidelines, which are now in effect. Latham wrote about … Continue Reading

Climate Litigation Targets the French Government

Four NGOs launch innovative action claiming state has not met COP21 objectives. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green On 17 December 2018, four NGOs filed legal action against the French state. In the legal action, the NGOs argued that the state has not met the short-term climate change objectives set at COP21. The … Continue Reading

Katowice Climate Change Conference Agrees on Rulebook for Implementing Paris Agreement

The deal establishes rules and guidelines for how governments will track, report on, and verify emissions-cutting efforts. By Jörn Kassow and Patrick Braasch Delegates from 196 countries and the European Union convened in Katowice, Poland, in December for two weeks of negotiations on creating a common rulebook for putting the Paris Agreement into practice. The … Continue Reading

Cutting-Edge Environmental Advice Profiled by the Financial Times

The Newhall Ranch project in Los Angeles County was highlighted for its proactive and innovative strategy to reduce carbon emissions. A strategy to gain approvals for the development of the Newhall Ranch community in Los Angeles County — built around the project’s net-zero impact on climate change — was recently featured in a report by … Continue Reading

Webcast – California’s 100% Zero Carbon Future: How SB 100 and EO B-55-18 Will Impact Businesses and Projects

Latham lawyers discuss the business implications of the new legislation. By Tommy P. Beaudreau, Marc T. Campopiano, Michael J. Gergen, Joshua T. Bledsoe, and Jennifer K. Roy Senate Bill 100, signed into law by Governor Jerry Brown on September 10, 2018, aims to raise California’s already ambitious renewable energy standards by 2030, with an ultimate … Continue Reading

China’s Global Supergrid to Enable Free Flow of Electricity Internationally

The proposed initiative will allow the provision of clean energy on a global scale by 2050. By Paul A. Davies and R. Andrew Westgate The Global Energy Interconnection (GEI) initiative, originally developed by Liu Zhenya, the chairman of the Chinese State Grid Corporation, is dedicated to promoting global energy interconnections in a sustainable manner. The … Continue Reading

European General Court Accepts Landmark Climate Change Litigation

Individuals join growing global trend of citizens bringing climate change litigation in a bid to hold governments to account. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green The European General Court has agreed to hear a legal challenge to EU climate legislation for inadequate targets for reducing climate change. Ten families from around the world … Continue Reading

Green Finance Institute to Launch in London

Initiative will advance the UK’s Paris Agreement targets by serving as a “one-stop shop for world-leading climate science, and for capital.” By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green UK Chancellor, Philip Hammond, has announced plans to launch a Green Finance Institute (GFI), through funding from both the UK government and the City of London Corporation. … Continue Reading

UK Government to Abolish CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme

Relief from the mandatory scheme will reduce the administrative burden on non-energy intensive companies. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green The Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC) — which first came into operation on 1 April 2010 — will be abolished at the end of the 2018-19 compliance year, pursuant to the CRC Energy Efficiency … Continue Reading

The Chinese Government Announced Measures to Assist With ETS Implementation

Updates underscore China’s commitment to reducing carbon emissions despite government agency reshuffling. By Paul A. Davies and R. Andrew Westgate The Climate Change Department (CCD) of the newly formed Ministry of Ecology and Environment (MEE) has announced its official updates in relation to China’s low carbon-development strategy generally and the National Emissions Trading System (ETS) … Continue Reading

Chinese Authorities Crack Down on Yangtze River Environmental Offenders

Polluters of one of China’s most polluted waterways are increasingly facing prosecution through coordinated local and national efforts. By Paul A. Davies and R. Andrew Westgate Chinese authorities have been increasing their efforts to prosecute environmental offenders along the Yangtze River, the third-longest river in the world and the longest in Asia. The crackdown reflects … Continue Reading

China Releases 2020 Air Pollution Action Plan

The plan’s stricter and more targeted requirements will impact a broader range of provinces, including the Fen-Wei Plains. By Paul A. Davies and R. Andrew Westgate China has released a new three-year action plan for 2018 to 2020 to combat air pollution. The previous air pollution action plan, published in 2013, has played a significant … Continue Reading

California Appeals Court: Statewide Emissions Goals May Inform Mitigation Measures

CEQA Case Report: Understanding the Judicial Landscape for Development[i] By Christopher W. Garrett, Daniel P. Brunton, Diego Enrique Flores, and Samantha K. Seikkula In an unpublished opinion issued May 18, 2018, Responsible Development for Water Tank Hill v. County of San Mateo, Case No. A150883, the California Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court’s judgment … Continue Reading

California Legislature Eyes 100% Clean Energy Target

The California Assembly is expected to vote this summer to establish increased renewable energy targets and set a target of 100% clean energy by 2045. By Marc T. Campopiano, Jennifer K. Roy, Diego Enrique Flores SB 100, Senator Kevin De Leon’s renewable energy bill, would increase California’s already ambitious renewable energy standards by 2030 with … Continue Reading

EU Aims to Improve the Energy Efficiency of Europe’s Buildings with New Directive

Building owners and developers will need to provide energy performance certificates for buildings. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green The European Union has published a directive aimed at improving building energy efficiency and reducing carbon emissions. EU Member States are required to transpose the directive (Directive (EU) 2018/844) by March 10, 2020. The … Continue Reading

Protecting the Environment Under the French Constitution: The Story Continues

Lawmakers will debate an amendment to include the country’s environmental commitments in Article 1 of France’s Constitution. By Fabrice Fages MPs in France have adopted an amendment to include a new paragraph in Article 1 of the French Constitution. The amendment reads: “France acts towards the preservation of the environment and biological diversity, and against … Continue Reading

EU Increases Renewable Energy Target in Preparation for Renewable Energy Directive

The EU has agreed that one third of energy use should be from renewable sources and encourages the use of renewable electricity or biofuels sourced from waste rather than crops. By Paul A. Davies and Michael D. Green After 18 months of negotiations, the EU has increased its renewable energy target from 27% to 32% … Continue Reading

Can China Meet Its Paris Agreement Targets?

Increased manufacturing offshoring and industrial activity may prevent China from reaching its commitments, despite a booming renewable energy sector. By Paul A. Davies, Kimberly Leefatt, and R. Andrew Westgate China’s carbon emissions increased by 4% in the first quarter of 2018 — marking the biggest hike in carbon emissions in the last seven years, according … Continue Reading
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