On September 27, 2016, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit heard oral argument over the Obama Administration’s signature plan for addressing climate change: the Clean Power Plan, which relies on “generation shifting” to reduce power sector emissions 32 percent by 2030. In a highly unusual move, the court held the argument en banc—that is, before all active judges (except recusals).  Thus, with the recusal of Supreme Court nominee Judge Garland, the case was heard before a ten judge panel of Judges Henderson, Tatel, Rogers, Griffith, Kavanaugh, Brown, Srinivasan, Pillard, Millett, and Wilkins (4 Republican-appointed and 6 Democrat-appointed, four of whom were appointed by President Obama).
Continue Reading D.C. Circuit Hears Arguments on Legality of the Clean Power Plan

On September 22, the United States Fish and Wildlife Service (“FWS”) proposed the rusty patched bumble bee for listing as an endangered species under the Endangered Species Act (“ESA”).  This action results from a 2013 petition and subsequent lawsuit filed by The Xerces Society for Invertebrate Conservation to list the rusty patched bumble bee as an endangered species.
Continue Reading Fish and Wildlife Proposes to Add Rusty Patched Bumble Bee to Endangered Species List

Troutman Sanders is pleased to announce that more than 115 of its lawyers have been selected for inclusion in the Best Lawyers in America© 2017 edition. Among this list are 11 of our Environmental and Natural Resources lawyers, including Gregory W. Blount, Randy E. Brogdon, Margaret Claiborne Campbell, William M. Droze, Douglas A. Henderson, Hollister “Holly” A. Hill, John H. Johnson, Jr., Carroll “Mack” W. McGuffey III, and Andrea L. Rimer in our Atlanta, Georgia office.; Peter S. Glaser in Washington, D.C.; and Brooks M. Smith in Richmond, VA.
Continue Reading 11 Environmental Partners Among Best Lawyers In America; Brooks Smith is “Lawyer of the Year”

Troutman Sanders LLP is pleased to announce that Kevin Desharnais has joined the firm’s Environmental practice as a partner in the Chicago office. Prior to joining Troutman Sanders, Desharnais was a partner at Mayer Brown LLP.
Continue Reading Troutman Sanders Environmental Practice Expands to Chicago with the Addition of Partner Kevin Desharnais

On Tuesday, June 14, 2016, EPA published a proposed rule in the Federal Register that would remove from Title V regulations the affirmative defense for noncompliance with certain emission limitations due to “emergency” circumstances. EPA now deems the affirmative defense to be inconsistent with recent federal case law and the Clean Air Act’s enforcement structure.

Today, Friday, June 3, 2016, EPA published in the Federal Register the final rule setting New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) regulating methane emissions from the oil and natural gas industry.

EPA also published a notice soliciting public comments on its proposed information collection request for existing oil and natural gas facilities. This marks the first step in developing methane standards for existing sources.
Continue Reading EPA Publishes Methane Standards for the Oil and Natural Gas Sector

In a unanimous decision issued today, the Supreme Court in Army Corps of Engineers v. Hawkes found that approved jurisdictional determinations (JDs) issued by the Army Corps may be challenged in federal district court under the Administrative Procedure Act. A copy of the decision is available here.
Continue Reading Supreme Court: Jurisdictional Determinations Reviewable by Federal Courts

On Friday, May 13, 2016, EPA published a proposed rule in the Federal Register that would subject site remediation activities under CERCLA and RCRA to Clean Air Act hazardous air pollutant requirements. Comments on the proposal are due by Monday, June 27, 2016.
Continue Reading EPA Proposes New Clean Air Act Requirements for Previously Exempt Site Remediation Activities