View Recent Blog Posts in Environmental Litigation

  • EPA RMP Requirements: Third Party Audits and Privilege By Lee Vail, Ph.D., J.D. On March 14, 2016, Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) proposed changes to the Risk Management Plan Program (“RMP”) Rule.  On January 13, 2017, the EPA published a new final rule.  This a second in a planned series that will address five major changes:  root cause analysis for near misses, third-party audits, [...] Continue Reading... ....
  • EPA RMP Requirements: Root Cause Analysis for Near Misses By R. Lee Vail, P.E., PH.D. On March 14, 2016, Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) proposed changes to the Risk Management Plan Program (“RMP”) Rule. On December 21, 2016, the EPA disclosed its changes via a Pre-Publication Copy.  A series of blogs are planned to address five major changes: root cause analysis for near misses, third-party [...] Continue Reading... ....
  • EPA Amends the Risk Management Program (RMP) Rule By Lee Vail On March 14, 2016, Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) proposed changes to the RMP Rule . On December 21, 2016, the EPA disclosed its changes via a Pre-Publication Copy. In the proposed rule, the EPA essentially agreed that the scope and trigger for post incident investigation was not universally understood or applied. The final [...] Continue Reading... ....
  • U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana Suspends Legal Delays Due to Flooding By Brittany Buckley Salup Chief Judge Brian Jackson issued an “Omnibus Order Suspending All Deadlines” for cases pending or to be filed in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana.  The Order explains that the court has been inaccessible—a key term in the Federal Rules of Civil and Appellate Procedure—since August 12, [...] Continue Reading... ....
  • The Flood of 2016: Governor Edwards Amends Executive Order Suspending Running of Prescription, Peremption, and Legal Delays By Claire Juneau On August 17, 2016, Governor Edwards amended Executive Order JBE 2016-57 which had suspended the running of prescription, peremption, and all legal delays from August 12, 2016 until September 9, 2016. The amendment to Executive Order JBE 2016-57 modifies the suspension of deadlines as follows: Liberative prescription and peremptive periods continue to [...] Continue Reading... ....
  • Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality Provides Relief and Guidance Under Emergency Administrative Order for August 2016 Flood By Maureen Harbourt On August 12, 2016, the Secretary of the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality issued an Emergency Administrative Order to provide relief from otherwise applicable state-issued environmental permit terms and rules in order to manage the situations created by the unprecedented flooding in southern Louisiana. The Order is available here.  The Order applies [...] Continue Reading... ....
  • Modified OSHA Policy Statement Defining Applicability: The “One Percent Rule” and Aqueous Mixtures By R. Lee Vail The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) published a Request for Information (“RFI”) on December 9, 2013 concerning possible changes to the Process Safety Management (“PSM”) program codified at 29 C.F.R. 1910.119. See 78 Fed. Reg. 73756 (Dec. 9, 2013). Likewise, the Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) published an RFI on July [...] Continue Reading... ....
  • Supreme Court Allows Early Challenges to US Army Corps of Engineers “Waters of the United States” Jurisdictional Determinations By Sam O. Lumpkin On May 31, 2016, the US Supreme Court ruled in United States Army Corps of Engineers v. Hawkes Co., Inc. that a jurisdictional determination issued by the Corps of Engineers under the Clean Water Act constitutes a final agency action that is judicially reviewable under the Administrative Procedure Act.  Justice Roberts [...] Continue Reading... ....
  • EPA Recognizes that the Baton Rouge Area Attained the 2008 8-Hour Ozone Standard By Tokesha Collins-Wright The May 4, 2016, Federal Register contains a notice of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (“EPA’s”) final decision that the Baton Rouge ozone nonattainment area has attained the 2008 8-hour ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standard (“NAAQS”). 81 Fed. Reg. 26,697. (The Baton Rouge nonattainment area consists of the parishes of Ascension, East [...] Continue Reading... ....
  • EPA Poised to Begin Collecting Methane Data from Existing Oil & Gas Facilities By Brittany Buckley Salup The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced in March that it is in the process of developing new regulations to curb methane emissions from existing oil and gas facilities.  The EPA will formally require companies operating existing oil and gas sources to provide information to assist in the development of comprehensive regulations [...] Continue Reading... ....