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Federal and State Developments

This week the Biden Administration released their PFAS Strategic Roadmap which sets forth ambitious action on regulation of Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) pollution, including targeted action with deadlines for eight different federal agencies.  The EPA’s stated goal is to focus on PFAS both upstream and downstream.

Upstream EPA intends to look at evaluating toxicity

In 2019, the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in County of Maui V. Hawaii Wildlife Fund addressed when a permit is required under the Clean Water Act for discharges to groundwater.  Prior to Maui, it was a long standing debate as to when the Clean Water Act (CWA) in order to discharge to groundwater.  Traditionally,

Polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS)- used in non-stick applications such as cookware, paper packaging, and textiles, as well as in certain types of firefighting foam- have become the new asbestos, and  PFAS litigation has been filed in multiple states.  Both the federal government and state governments have been moving forward with significant new regulation of the PFAS

The Council on Environmental Quality has proposed a new rule which would streamline the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) which is the federal law that requires review of the environmental impacts from federal projects or projects that receive federal funding.  NEPA has been called by its critics as an unnecessarily long paperwork exercise that delays

In February 2019, U.S. EPA released its action plan to regulate Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFASs).  The two most well-known PFAS chemicals are perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctonoic acid (PFOA).

Consumer products have long used PFASs for things such as non-stick cookware, waterproof carpeting, clothing, and some firefighting foams.  While PFASs made great consumer products,

Generally, the Natural Gas Act (NGA) preempts a state’s ability to enforce its own state laws with limited exceptions.  The purpose of the NGA preemption of state law is to expedite interstate energy projects such as natural gas pipelines that could otherwise be entangled in state regulations in multiple jurisdictions.

There are limited exceptions to

On January 22, 2018, U.S. EPA’s Assistant Administrator issued a memorandum to all U.S. EPA Regional Administrators that contained interim guidance on enforcement of environmental violations by State EPAs and the federal EPA.  The interim guidance is a significant shift away from the traditional federal/state balance on enforcement giving much greater leeway to the States.

The Trump Administration has made rollback of environmental regulations a top priority.  Through the use of Executive Orders and the Congressional Review Act(CRA), the Administration has already undone significant Obama era regulations, including the Waters of the U.S. Rule (WOTUS) and the Clean Power Plan.

The Trump Administration has also proposed significant budget cuts to