Environmental and Sustainability Law

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July 28, 2014 0

NIOSH Investigates Workplace Hazards in Fracking Industry

By in Environmental and Sustainability Law

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) is investigating employer safety issues in the hydraulic fracturing (fracking) industry, as a result of a series of deaths of fracking workers in North Dakota and Montana.  NIOSH determined that the workers were exposed to high levels of volatile hydrocarbons during drilling of fracking wells.  It [...]

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July 21, 2014 0

Clean Air Act Notices of Violation Not Reviewable

By in Environmental and Sustainability Law

The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals has dismissed a power plant’s suit seeking review of a Notice of Violation (NOV) issued to a coal plant.  In the case, Luminant Generation Co., L.L.C. v. U.S., Luminant requested that the Court reject the NOV due to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) failure to provide adequate notice [...]

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July 14, 2014 0

Iowa Supreme Court Decides That Solar Power Provider Is Not a Public Utility and Not Governed by Exclusive Territorial Restrictions

By in Environmental and Sustainability Law

In a case closely watched nationwide, the Iowa Supreme Court last Friday, July 11, affirmed a lower court decision allowing the use of power purchase agreements (PPAs) to finance installation of photovoltaic (PV) solar energy facilities.  SZ Enterprises, Inc., d/b/a Eagle Point Solar v. Iowa Utilities Board, a Division of the Department of Commerce, State [...]

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July 2, 2014 0

Proposed Rule on U.S. Jurisdictional Waters Facing Heavy Criticism

By in Environmental and Sustainability Law

On April 21, 2014, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) proposed a rule defining the scope of waters protected under the Clean Water Act (“CWA”).  The purpose of the rule was to provide clarification after a number of Supreme Court cases which had cast doubt on the existing understanding [...]

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June 27, 2014 0

EPA Proposes Rule to Remove Reference from Outdated Due Diligence Standard

By in Environmental and Sustainability Law

On June 17, the EPA proposed a rule that would remove references to the outdated 2005 industry standard for assessing Brownfields and other sites for potential environmental issues.  The proposed rule would amend the EPA’s All Appropriate Inquiry (“AAI”) rule under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act. (“CERCLA”).  Conducting an investigation that meets [...]

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June 23, 2014 0

Texting While Driving is an Employee Safety Issue

By in Environmental and Sustainability Law

Motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death on the job, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).  In fact, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, transportation incidents accounted for 42% of all fatal work injuries in 2012.  And in our increasingly technological world, more texting leads to more crashes.  With [...]

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June 16, 2014 0

Cox Enterprises Announces National Employee Solar Program

By in Environmental and Sustainability Law

Through its Cox Conserves sustainability program, Cox Enterprises is launching a national employee solar program that will provide incentives for employees who choose to install solar panel systems on their homes. The program was announced by Cox Enterprises Chairman Jim Kennedy today in a session on energizing employees at Fortune’s Brainstorm Green conference. Cox’s employee solar program was initially [...]

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June 6, 2014 0

Pursuit of US Offshore Wind Energy Takes a Step Forward, Yet Technical, Legal Challenges Remain

By in Environmental and Sustainability Law

With nearly 100,000 miles of coastline, the US Department of Energy (DOE) estimates that US offshore wind holds the potential to provide 900,000 megawatts of electricity, which is roughly the energy necessary to power 270 million homes.  Yet, it may come as a surprise to the general public that there are currently zero operational offshore [...]

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June 2, 2014 0


By in Environmental and Sustainability Law

On Monday, June 2, the Obama administration announced a plan to cut carbon emissions from power plants by nearly a third over the next 15 years.  Under the proposed rule, which is expected to be finalized next year, each of the 50 states will be given the opportunity to determine how to meet specific targets [...]

May 30, 2014 0

Georgia Power to Construct Solar Projects at U.S. Army Bases in Georgia

By in Environmental and Sustainability Law

The largest U.S. utility company, Georgia Power, which is owned by the Southern Company, will build three, 30 megawatt solar projects at U.S. army military bases located in Georgia.  It is anticipated that the projects, which are scheduled to be completed by the end of 2016 will be constructed at Fort Benning near Columbus, Fort [...]

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