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Sustainability Reporting: To What End?
TSMP Law Corporation, October 2019

Activists and government leaders are sounding the death knell for our planet unless something is done about climate change. But while sustainability is important, sustainability reporting may not be the answer.In a headline-hogging speech at the UN last month, 16-year-old environmental activist Greta Thunberg berated politicians and business people for doing too little to arrest climate change, ruining the globe for future generations.High-profile scandals back up her claim...

MSHA Civil Penalties, Respirable Silica Quartz, and OSHA Drone Use
Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, September 2019

An Update in the World of Workplace Safety MSHA Civil Penalties On August 16, 2019, the United States Department of Labor Office of Inspector General (“OIG”) issued a report on MSHA’s civil monetary penalties (“CMP”) program...

Mauritius’ Environment Land Use Appeal Tribunal Delivers Ground Breaking Fish Farming Project Judgment
ENSafrica, August 2019

  The Association Des Hoteliers et Restaurateurs Ile Maurice(“AHRIM”), an association of hotels and restaurants in Mauritius, and the Sea Users Association, an association of civilians, recently won an important appeal against the grant of an Environmental Impact Assessment (“EIA”) licence to a fish farming project by the Minister of Social Security, National Solidarity, and Environment and Sustainable Development...

Carbon Tax Becomes Law on 1 June 2019
ENSafrica, August 2019

  South African President Cyril Ramaphosa has signed into law the Carbon Tax Act, 2019, which comes into effect on 1 June 2019. With the passing of the carbon tax into law, a price on carbon emissions is now a reality for the South African economy.The impact of the legislation, along with complementary measures such as the national greenhouse gas emission reporting regulations, will have a transformative effect on the South African economy...

California Expands Legal Definition of Beer
Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, July 2019

California Assembly Bill No. 205 was approved by Gov. Gavin Newsom on July 9, 2019. Assembly Member Tom Daly, who represents California’s 69th district of Orange County cities Santa Ana, Anaheim, and Garden Grove, introduced AB-205 to expand the definition of “beer” under Business & Professions Code §23006, which is part of the Alcohol Beverage Control Act. The new law is set to go into effect on Jan. 1, 2020...

Protecting Your Brand and Trademarks in the Cannabis Space Following the 2018 Farm Bill
Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, July 2019

As seen on Law360: The 2018 Farm Bill[1] relaxed restrictions covering hemp-based cannabis products, and it is causing a shift in business strategies in the industry. Instead of a full prohibition of trademark registrations covering cannabis goods or services, a narrow range of filings is now permitted, so long as they conform to the requirements of the Farm Bill and the latest USPTO guidelines...

Uncertainty Abounds Despite Clean Water Act Update
Dinsmore & Shohl LLP, July 2019

Last month marked the 50-year anniversary of one of the more infamous and impactful environmental disasters to occur in the United States. On June 22, 1969, the Cuyahoga River, which runs through the heart of Cleveland before emptying into Lake Erie, caught fire for the 13th time. Time magazine ran a story that highlighted the river’s severe pollution...

Michigan Opens the Door for Expanded Solar Development on Farmland
Dykema, June 2019

On Monday, June 3, Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development (MDARD) announced MDARD’s decision to allow for commercial solar energy development on land currently enrolled in the Farmland and Open Space Preservation Program, commonly known as PA 116. PA 116 was established in 1975 and is designed to preserve farmland and open space in Michigan...

Fake Meat Good, Fake News Bad
TSMP Law Corporation, June 2019

For businesses who care about their brands, Pofma may be not be such a bad idea after all.Beyond Meat Inc. makes cows happy and cardiologists sad. Its Beyond Burger uses no meat and has no cholesterol, and contains less fat, fewer calories and more protein than a typical burger...

The National Environment Act 2019: Revamping the Law on Environmental Protection in Uganda
ENSafrica, May 2019

  Uganda has taken a bold and long overdue step to revamp its 24-year old environmental law, the National Environment Act (Cap. 153) (the “NEA”). An amendment was necessary given the massive infrastructure projects in the energy sector, the planned infrastructure of a refinery and pipelines in the oil and gas space, the imminent production of oil, increasing urbanisation and the consequent pressures on land, and climate change...

Marine Finfish Aquaculture: A New Environmental Framework
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, May 2019

The Scottish Government, SEPA and industry have identified significant opportunities for the growth of the finfish aquaculture sector in Scotland. This expansion is an express policy objective of the Scottish Government, and was confirmed through the National Marine Plan published in 2015. Nevertheless, whilst there has been some growth in the sector since the plan’s publication, the sector has yet to realise its full potential...

Brexit Breathing Space for Food Business Operators
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, May 2019

Whatever your views on Brexit, the deferment of the UK’s leaving date from the EU provided British industry some welcome breathing space to prepare for Brexit. Given the issues that still divide the two main political parties, the UK may yet leave the EU without a deal on 31 October...

Five Things a Buyer of a Rural Property Needs to Know
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, May 2019

Scotland’s countryside offers a vast range of property investment options, from houses and cottages to farms and country estates. However, when buying a rural property it is important to consider various issues that may be taken for granted in the purchase of a property in an urban area. 1...

Diligence: Early Involvement Pays
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, April 2019

Coordinating cross-border due diligence is a key skill that more often than not underpins complex, multi-jurisdictional merger and acquisitions (M&A) and private equity (PE)-led transactions. Where due diligence really adds value is in the early stages of the transaction, when local knowledge and expertise are vital to understanding the context of data room information...

Stopping Issues from Becoming Crises: Best Practice for Food Business Operators
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, April 2019

The presence of a small amount of undeclared sesame in a particular product may seem trivial but, for those who are allergic, it can provoke a major reaction. Such was the predicament faced by Pret a Manger in July 2016, following the death of Natasha Ednan-Laperouse that same month due to the undeclared presence of sesame in a Pret baguette...

Change is Coming to the Landed Estates in Scotland
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, April 2019

TheScottish Land Commission recently published their reportinto what it describes as the issues associated with largescale and concentrated land ownership in Scotland. The report draws a number of conclusions and makes recommendations to the Scottish Government about potential future legislative change that might have far-reaching consequences for rural land ownership...

Rights of Access vs Right to Privacy
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, February 2019

The public rights of access on and over land, enshrined in the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003, have now been around for almost 14 years. They allow all members of the public a responsible right of access on and across land and inland water throughout the country, often informally referred to as the right to roam. Certain parts of land may be excluded from the rights of access under the Act: restrictions may be allowed, for example, due to planned forestry operations...

Recent Changes to EPA Coal Ash Regulations - Regulatory and Insurance Coverage Implications
Haynes and Boone, LLP, January 2019

A new rule promulgated by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) governing the disposal of coal combustion residuals, also known as CCR or coal ash, raises the risk for civil claims and the need for insurance to cover them.1  The rule, which takes effect Aug. 29, 2018, revises regulations issued in 2015 and has the stated intent of providing utilities and states “more flexibility in how CCR is managed...

People Over Wind and Peter Sweetman v Coillte
A&L Goodbody, January 2019

In case C-323/17 People Over Wind and Peter Sweetman v Coillte, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) ruled that mitigation measures could not be taken into account at the screening stage of an appropriate assessment. Facts This case focused on proposed works that were necessary to lay a cable connecting a wind farm to the electricity grid and the potential effects that this would have on two special areas of conservation...

The Advocate: Risks to the Energy Sector Posted by Climate Change Litigation
Haynes and Boone, LLP, January 2019

Fossil fuels are under attack in the legislative, regulatory, and judicial arenas, and in the market place—driven by environmental concerns, especially global warming and associated climate change. The Sierra Club, for example, has launched a “Beyond Dirty Fuels Initiative,” seeking to “push back against the construction of dirty fossil fuel infrastructure that would lock America into decades more of climate-polluting oil and gas production...

It's Still Gray: The 2018 Farm Bill and the Legality of CBD Under Federal Law
Haynes and Boone, LLP, January 2019

President Trump recently signed the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018 (also known as the 2018 Farm Bill) and the cannabis industry quickly and widely celebrated passage as clearing the way to sell products containing cannabidiol (better known as CBD). But is it really? As one might expect, this lawyer’s answer is that “it depends.”CBD has become known for its purported health benefits in relation to a wide range of conditions...

Covered by the Clean Water Act and WOTUS? Maybe Not Anymore.
Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt, December 2018

In December of 2018, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) released their much-anticipated draft proposed rule to re-write the definition of “waters of the United States” (WOTUS) (“2018 Rule”). The definition of WOTUS establishes the scope of agency jurisdiction over waters and wetlands under the Clean Water Act (CWA)...

The NFUS Joint Venture Hub: Match-Making for a New Agricultural Future
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, December 2018

The National Farmers Union, Scotland (NFUS) Joint Venture Hub is designed to act as a match-maker, bringing together enterprising individuals – some of whom have land and some of whom don’t – with a view to pooling their resources to farm together for profit. The Hub can be accessed online via this link. One of the possible vehicles for pursuing a joint venture is by entering into a share farming agreement...

Supreme Court Ruling on Critical Habitat in Dusky Gopher Frog Case
Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt, December 2018

The Supreme Court has handed down one of the most anticipated Endangered Species Act (ESA) rulings in recent years. In Weyerhaeuser Co. v. U.S. Fish and Wildlife Serv., the Supreme Court unanimously overruled the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals, holding that the Fish and Wildlife Service can only designate property that is “habitat” as critical habitat under the ESA...

Scotland in 2050: Rural and Agriculture - Navigating Uncertainties to Realize Opportunities
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, October 2018

To coincide with its 250th anniversary, Shepherd and Wedderburn commissioned the University of Strathclyde’s Fraser of Allander Institute to consider the future challenges and, more importantly, opportunities for Scotland’s economy...

 

 

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