Environmental

  • November 30, 2020

    Holland & Knight Adds 2 Energy Infrastructure Partners

    Holland & Knight LLP has added two project finance partners from DLA Piper and Schiff Hardin LLP who will play leading roles in the firm's energy infrastructure practice.

  • November 25, 2020

    Law360 Names Practice Groups Of The Year

    Law360 congratulates the winners of its 2020 Practice Groups of the Year awards, which honor the law firms behind the litigation wins and major deals that resonated throughout the legal industry in the past year.

  • November 25, 2020

    The Firms That Dominated In 2020

    The eight law firms topping Law360's Firms of the Year managed to win 54 Practice Group of the Year awards among them, for guiding landmark deals, scoring victories in high-profile disputes and helping companies navigate uncharted legal seas made rough by the coronavirus pandemic.

  • November 27, 2020

    EU Banks Told To Beef Up Climate Disclosures To Investors

    Banks are falling short on climate-related disclosures and must be more transparent about the financial and environmental risks associated with global warming, the European Central Bank said on Friday.

  • November 25, 2020

    Monsanto, BASF Get $265M Dicamba Verdict Slashed To $75M

    A Missouri federal judge on Wednesday cut a punitive damages award that a Missouri farm won against Monsanto and BASF in a bellwether trial over claims the weedkiller dicamba ruined the farm's peach trees from $250 million to $60 million, ruling that the case involved only economic damages as opposed to physical harm.

  • November 25, 2020

    Calif. Judge DQ'd From Atty Fees Fight In Water Plan Dispute

    A California appeals court Tuesday ruled that a lower court judge should be disqualified from hearing a dispute over attorney fees after the Imperial Irrigation District fended off a challenge to its water distribution plan, ruling the district had the right to request a new judge after its initial loss in the case was overturned on appeal.

  • November 25, 2020

    EU Regulatory Plan Targets Big Pharma Competition, Mergers

    The European Commission on Wednesday adopted a plan to develop a regulatory framework by 2022 to increase access to cheap generic drugs by cracking down on anti-competitive behaviors by pharmaceutical companies across the European Union.

  • November 25, 2020

    Ex-SCANA CEO Cops To Fraud In Nuke Plant Plans Debacle

    The former CEO of South Carolina utility company SCANA Corp. pled guilty to federal and state charges of fraud stemming from his role in an alleged plot in which the company misled investors about plans for a $9 billion nuclear power plant expansion.

  • November 25, 2020

    Pebble Mine's Future Dims As Key Permit Is Denied

    The Army Corps of Engineers on Wednesday said it will not approve a critical water permit for a controversial gold and copper mine in Alaska, saying the project's environmental harms are too great, even considering the estimated economic benefits.

  • November 25, 2020

    Trump Says DOJ Can Stop Enviro Project Settlements

    The Trump administration told a Massachusetts federal court that it had the discretion to reach settlements as it saw fit, pushing to end a suit by environmental advocates that said the U.S. Department of Justice's policy banning environmental improvement projects in enforcement settlements is unlawful.

  • November 25, 2020

    Media, Energy-Focused SPACs Raise $561M In Market Debuts

    Two blank-check companies, one led by former Disney executives and the other backed by Apollo Global Management, started trading Wednesday after raising a combined $561 million in initial public offerings.

  • November 25, 2020

    Longtime Greenpeace GC Exits For Children's Nonprofit

    Environmental nonprofit Greenpeace International's general counsel has departed the organization after 16 years heading its legal department, joining a nonprofit focused on children's well-being as a director of strategic litigation on its climate change team.

  • November 25, 2020

    EPA Says Power Plants Don't Need Superfund Safety Nets

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Wednesday said it will not require power plants, chemical manufacturers, or petroleum-based and coal-based product manufacturers to set aside money to cover pollution cleanups that may result from their operations.

  • November 25, 2020

    Smithfield Unit Accused Of Polluting Los Angeles River

    A California man claims stormwater runoff from Smithfield Foods' hog and meat processing plants in Los Angeles County is degrading a river's aquatic life and scenic views from a downstream park, in violation of environmental laws.

  • November 25, 2020

    BigLaw's Sustainability Pro Bono Drive Blew Past $15M Goal

    When a group of BigLaw firms committed two years ago to devote $15 million worth of time to climate change and sustainability issues, they got overwhelming interest from junior associates and senior partners alike, and as the program has grown, firms have contributed at least $24 million in pro bono work.

  • November 24, 2020

    Feds Say 4th Circ. Skimped On Baltimore Climate Suit Review

    The federal government has told the U.S. Supreme Court that it should be easier for energy giants like Chevron and Exxon Mobil to move state court lawsuits seeking to hold them liable for climate change damages to federal court.

  • November 24, 2020

    DHS Sued Over Environmental Impacts Of Immigration

    Three Minnesota residents sued the federal government Tuesday alleging it has neglected its obligation to consider the environmental impacts of immigration to the U.S. for decades and "turned a blind eye" to how population increases jeopardize natural resources.

  • November 24, 2020

    NPS Fire Response Mostly Exempt From Insurers' Suit

    The U.S. government on Tuesday dodged the lion's share of a suit brought against it by five insurers who claim National Parks Service employees contributed to damages and loss of life in their handling of a fire at the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

  • November 24, 2020

    Water Permits Voided For $2B Wash. Methanol Refinery

    A Washington federal court has struck down water quality permits granted by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to an export terminal for a 90-acre, $2 billion methanol manufacturing project in the state, ruling the approvals were issued without properly considering the full indirect emissions of the project.

  • November 24, 2020

    States, Cities Seek Demise Of Trump's Narrowed Water Rule

    A group of states on Monday asked a federal judge to scrap the Trump administration's rule narrowing the scope of the Clean Water Act's jurisdiction, saying the government failed to study how excluding many previously protected waters would harm water quality and step on states' rights.

  • November 24, 2020

    Divided DC Circ. Denies Tribes' Bid To Halt Border Wall

    A divided D.C. Circuit panel refused to halt construction of President Donald Trump's border wall on Monday, overriding claims from Native American groups that the project is irreversibly destroying significant archeological sites, in violation of federal law.

  • November 24, 2020

    Law Firms Say Botched BP Oil Spill Claims Time-Barred

    A group of law firms have asked a Louisiana federal judge to toss a lawsuit brought by local fishermen accusing the firms of mishandling their clients' requests for compensation following the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill in April 2010, arguing that the alleged claims are time-barred.

  • November 24, 2020

    Sierra Club Files DC Circ. Challenge To EPA Coal Ash Rule

    The Sierra Club and other environmental groups on Tuesday filed a D.C. Circuit challenge against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's rule that advocates say improperly extends the life of unlined coal ash ponds operated by electric utilities.

  • November 24, 2020

    Colo. Enacts Stricter Rules For Oil And Gas Drillers

    Colorado oil and gas regulators on Monday adopted an overhaul of drilling rules to require greater consideration of public health and environmental impacts, including drilling further away from homes and schools and limiting venting and flaring from gas wells.

  • November 24, 2020

    Apple's Bottled Water Supplier Sues Cos. Over Dirty Delivery

    Vita Water has filed a product liability suit against its bottled water suppliers in Texas federal court, alleging their first shipment to its largest customer, Apple, was so contaminated that live protozoa could be seen through a microscope "wriggling" in the water.

Expert Analysis

  • 7 Tips For Predeposition Meetings Under New Federal Rule

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    Attorneys can use a new predeposition meet-and-confer obligation for federal litigation — taking effect Tuesday — to better understand and narrow the topics of planned testimony, and more clearly outline the scope of any discovery disputes, says James Wagstaffe at Wagstaffe von Loewenfeldt Busch.

  • Biden Must Sustain Laser Focus To Meet Lofty Green Goals

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    President-elect Joe Biden has targeted climate change with ambitious power-sector and emissions targets, but several obstacles will need to be addressed, including the power markets' decentralized nature, certain states and constituencies' resistance, and the expected lack of a congressional mandate, say Sandra Rizzo and Jamie Lee at Arnold & Porter.

  • Ethics Reminders As Employees Move To Or From Gov't

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    Many organizations are making plans for executives to go into government jobs, or for government officials to join a private sector team, but they must understand the many ethics rules that can put a damper on just how valuable the former employee or new hire can be, say Scott Thomas and Jennifer Carrier at Blank Rome.

  • Carbon Capture Policy Should Be Aligned For Global Adoption

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    With support from both Republicans and Democrats, carbon capture, utilization and storage technology as a tool for decarbonization may be poised for domestic growth — but the U.S. and the European Union must coordinate their policies to promote a global approach, say Hunter Johnston and Jeff Weiss at Steptoe & Johnson.

  • A Key To Helping Clients Make Better Decisions During Crisis

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    As the pandemic brings a variety of legal stresses for businesses, lawyers must understand the emotional dynamic of a crisis and the particular energy it produces to effectively fulfill their role as advisers, say Meredith Parfet and Aaron Solomon at Ravenyard Group.

  • Expect Major Changes In Aerospace And Defense Under Biden

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    President-elect Joe Biden is expected to significantly shift aerospace and defense industry priorities, revoke certain Trump administration government contractor policies, strengthen "Buy American" requirements, and increase use of defense and NASA budgetary authority to combat climate change, say attorneys at Hogan Lovells.

  • How Federal, State Plans Could Bring Carbon Capture To US

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    Proposals from President-elect Joe Biden, a pair of bills currently pending in Congress and a low-carbon fuels program in California provide insights into how carbon capture, utilization and storage technology could be integrated into the fight against climate change in the U.S., say Hunter Johnston and Jeff Weiss at Steptoe.

  • Ethics Considerations For Law Firms Implementing AI

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    Richard Finkelman and Yihua Astle at Berkeley Research Group discuss the ethical and bias concerns law firms must address when implementing artificial intelligence-powered applications for recruiting, conflict identification and client counseling.

  • EU Climate Goals Are Hard To Reach Without Carbon Capture

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    The European Union's failure to fully embrace blue fuels, produced using carbon capture, utilization and storage technologies, may hinder the region's pursuit of its aggressive decarbonization goals, say Hunter Johnston and Jeff Weiss at Steptoe & Johnson.

  • Picking The Right Location And Tools For Virtual Courtrooms

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    Attorneys should consider the pros and cons of participating in virtual court proceedings from home versus their law firm offices, and whether they have the right audio, video and team communication tools for their particular setup, say attorneys at Arnold & Porter.

  • Carbon Capture Tech Offers A Fast Path Toward Climate Goals

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    To meet ambitious climate goals, the U.S., EU and other developed nations must immediately start reducing carbon emissions from fossil fuels, which policymakers can encourage by supporting carbon capture, utilization and storage technologies, say Hunter Johnston and Jeff Weiss at Steptoe.

  • Beware Atty Ethics Rules When Reporting COVID-19 Fraud

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    Attorneys considering blowing the whistle on False Claims Act violations by recipients of COVID-19 relief may face a number of ethical constraints on their ability to disclose client information and file qui tam actions, say Breon Peace and Jennifer Kennedy Park at Cleary.

  • Looking For Judicial Activists? Check The Footnotes

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    U.S. Supreme Court nominees typically face intense questioning over potential judicial activism, but a better way to gauge judges' activist tendencies may be to look at the footnotes in their opinions, say Christopher Collier at Hawkins Parnell and Michael Arndt at Rohan Law.

  • Best Practices For Legal Technology Adoption

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    The pandemic has accelerated the need to improve the practice of law through technology, but law firms and in-house legal departments must first ensure they have employee buy-in and well-defined processes for new digital tools, say Dan Broderick at BlackBoiler and Daryl Shetterly at Orrick.

  • Opinion

    Dakota Pipeline Challenge Undermines Permitting Process

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    If Standing Rock Sioux Tribe v. Army Corps of Engineers succeeds at challenging the Dakota Access Pipeline's environmental permitting more than three years after it came online, other infrastructure projects might also face legal battles long after they are built, says David Hill at the Columbia University Center on Global Energy Policy.

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