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Pollution of the Solution?
TSMP Law Corporation, November 2019

Amid the noise, vitriol and spectacle, the real debate that we need to have about climate change has been drowned out.   In the past few weeks, I have followed with much interest a Swedish child activist’s barely concealed yearning for the Nobel Peace Prize...

The Environment Bill 2019 - Water, Water, Everywhere
Shoosmiths LLP, October 2019

Part 5 of the Environment Bill, contains a number of disparate proposals relating to water – which could have major implications for many. Senior associate Joanne Sear and solicitor Grace Mitchell take a look at some of the key points in the Bill. Water resources planning According to its explanatory notes, the Bill is intended to “improve… water resources planning” and “facilitate… collaborative regional planning”...

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...

Special Report: New Law on Integral Waste Management
Guyer & Regules, September 2019

On September 11, 2019, the House of Representatives approved the Law on Integral Waste Management. This project, which was submitted in June 2018 by the Executive Branch, presents a new scenario in this area with important changes for all actors and operators. The guiding purpose of the law is the minimization of waste generation through the search for efficiency in production processes, encouraging subsidiary reuse and recovery through recycling...

Mauritiaus' 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. The appeal was 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...

The Climate Action Plan 2019: Agriculture, Forestry and Land Use
A&L Goodbody, July 2019

Currently, 33% of Ireland's Greenhouse Gas emissions are produced as a result of agricultural activities. In order to reduce emissions there must be a change in farming methods; opportunities are also present in the areas of forestry, bioenergy and land-use practices. While reducing emissions, policy in this area must also aim to: Maintain the "green" brand image of Irish food exports abroad ("Origin Green" etc.). Maintain good prices for producers...

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...

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...

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...

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...

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)...

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...

Friends of the Irish Environment v An Bord Pleanala
A&L Goodbody, October 2018

The High Court judgment in Friends of the Irish Environment v. An Bord Pleanála (delivered in 2018 by Meenan J) decided that if a Section 5 referral is made by a third party, then the owners and occupiers of the lands must be identified and served with notice of the referral, and given an opportunity to make submissions in accordance with basic fair procedures...

Acquiring Rights of Way by Prescription
Shepherd and Wedderburn LLP, October 2018

In Scots law, it is possible to acquire certain rights to land – access, for instance – simply by the passage of time. This process is known as “prescription” and is outlined in the Prescription and Limitation (Scotland) Act 1973. There are two forms of prescription: positive and negative. Negative prescription extinguishes certain rights after a period of time...

Energy Voice: Avoiding Cost Overruns in Decommissioning
Haynes and Boone, LLP, October 2018

The UKCS is the largest decommissioning market in the North Sea. There are around 475 fixed facilities, over 10,000 kilometres of pipeline and approximately 5,000 wells. These will all need to be decommissioned over the next 30 years, when they reach the end of their economic life, at an estimated cost of £59.7 billion...

How is Australia Managing the Transition to Renewable Energy?
MinterEllison, October 2018

In Australia, we're seeing enormous opportunities and some policy challenges in renewable energy...

Essential Freshwater. Essential Changes?
MinterEllisonRuddWatts, October 2018

The Minister for the Environment and Minister for Agriculture have released a freshwater work programme called Essential Freshwater: Healthy Water, Fairly Allocated that is designed to get results before the next election. The freshwater programme sets out the Government’s three main objectives: - stopping further degradation and loss of New Zealand’s freshwater resources, waterways and ecosystems;- reversing past damage; and- addressing water allocation issues...

Feeling the Heat: the Draft Climate Change Bill, 2018
ENSafrica, October 2018

Feeling the heat: the draft Climate Change Bill, 2018 Earlier this year, the South African Minister of Environmental Affairs (the “Minister”) published the draft Climate Change Bill, 2018 for public comment. Since then, the Department of Environmental Affairs (“DEA”) has undertaken a road show across the country to solicit comments to the Bill and held further bilateral meetings with stakeholders earlier this year...

 

 

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