Latest News and Perspectives on California Prop 65

The latest news and perspectives on California’s Proposition 65 (Prop 65) track the passage of the newly-amended Clear and Reasonable Warnings regulations under Prop 65, which took effect on August 30, 2018. Significantly, plaintiffs have started to target companies whom they believe to not be in compliance with the newly-amended regulations.  Read more below about this and other important recent updates since the new Prop 65 regulations became effective, including the updated comment deadline of January 11, 2019, on proposed amendments:

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December 2018 Update: Key Developments in UK and EU Environment, Safety and Health Law, Procedure and Policy

Online NewsWe are pleased to share our latest edition of “frESH Law Horizons: Key Developments in UK & EU Environment, Safety and Health Law, Procedure and Policy”.  In the December edition, we summarise 29 developments in the environmental, safety and health sector. Top stories this month include:

  • Three companies, all operating on the same site found liable after security killed and fined £1.4 million.
  • OPSS launches guide for consumers on “shopping safety for children at Christmas” after reports of potential safety issues with counterfeit goods
  • CPS find bus company guilty of breaching Health & Safety and issue a fine of £2.3 million
  • A water company has donated £975,000 to local charities after a water pollution offence

For more detailed information on these developments and access to the remaining summaries, download a copy from our website. Make sure you also subscribe to receive our most recent edition every month.

US EPA Issues Proposal to Freeze Tailpipe Emission Standards

The United States Environmental Protection Agency (US EPA) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) issued a proposed rule regarding existing Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) and tailpipe greenhouse gases (GHG) emission standards for passenger cars and light-duty trucks on August 24, 2018. With this proposal, US EPA’s goal is to finalize a rule that would freeze standards rather than provide for increasingly stringent standards, which was the plan set by the previous rule under the Obama Administration. The proposed rule would also revoke California’s authority to set its own GHG emissions standards for passenger cars and light-duty trucks more stringent than federal standards.

We previously reported on the lawsuit filed by a number of states in response to US EPA’s announcement that it would be rolling back tailpipe emission standards. Eighteen states petitioned the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals for review of US EPA’s determination that it would revise the GHG standards. US EPA’s decision to do so was a reversal of its initial determination, made pursuant to the mid-term evaluation prescribed by rule, that the GHG standards remained appropriate for the period through model year (MY) 2025.

In response, US EPA filed a motion to dismiss the case for lack of jurisdiction, arguing that judicial review would be improper because US EPA’s decision to initiate a rulemaking concerning the emission standards did not constitute final agency action. Petitioners argued in response that the Agency was attempting to skirt judicial review and simply “wipe the administrative slate clean.”

On November 21, 2018, the court announced that it would review the Petitioners’ challenge to US EPA’s determination to revise the standards on the merits. Continue Reading

US OSHA Continues Emphasis on Excavation and Trenching Safety

SafetyEffective October 1, 2018, the US Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) updated its National Emphasis Program (NEP) on Trenching and Excavation, with the intent of describing “policies and procedures . . . to identify and to reduce hazards which are causing or likely to cause serious injuries and fatalities during trenching and excavation operations.”  The updated NEP replaces the original 1985 CPL 02-00-069 – Special Emphasis: Trenching and Excavation and, among other things, establishes a requirement for each Area Office/Region to develop and implement outreach programs in support of the emphasis program, including the provision of compliance assistance materials for employers, permitting and other municipal organizations, industry associations, equipment rental organizations, water works supply companies, and plumbing companies (“stakeholders”). Continue Reading

Left In The Lurch – Another UK Landlord Convicted Following Tenant’s Unlawful Waste Operations

Recent caselaw demonstrates that regulators are prepared to prosecute landlords as a direct result of their tenants’ unlawful waste operations. Landlords should consider this possibility when Toxic Waste Barrelsnegotiating with prospective tenants and put in place reasonable safeguards to protect themselves. However, victims of fly-tipping may potentially face a similar risk of prosecution against which such safeguards will not be available. Continue Reading

Two Federal Courts Issue Decisions Against EPA “Suspension” Rule, Reviving and Protecting Obama-era Waters Rule

A swamp in the middle of the clearing

In the past two weeks, U.S. District Courts in South Carolina and Washington issued decisions that dealt additional blows to the Trump Administration’s efforts to unravel the 2015 Obama-era “waters of the United States” rule (“Obama Rule”).  In light of these rulings, the Obama Rule appears poised to remain effective in 22 states for at least the immediate future.

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The Significance in UK Nuisance Law of the Introduction of the “Agents of Change” Principle

The National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF) was first published in March 2012. The original NPPF (NPPF1) consolidated various other Planning Policy documents into one overarching framework. The purpose of the NPPF is set out in the introduction which states that “It provides a framework within which locally-prepared plans for housing and other development can be produced… [and that] the National Planning Policy Framework must be taken into account in preparing [a] development plan, and is a material consideration in planning decisions”.

The Revised National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF2) published in July 2018 introduced the “Agents of Change” principle into the legislative framework (paragraph 182). This is the first revision of the NPPF since the NPPF1 was published in March 2012. The purpose of the NPPF2 remains the same as that in the NPPF1. Both the NPPF1 and NPPF2 focus on issues such as: sustainable development, building a strong economy, ensuring the vitality of town centres, promoting healthy communities and protecting green belt land. However, the NPPF2 introduces around 85 reforms and amendments to the NPPF1, with the inclusion of the “Agents of Change” principle one of the key differences between the two documents. Continue Reading

November 2018 Update: Key Developments in UK and EU Environment, Safety and Health Law, Procedure and Policy

Online NewsWe are pleased to share our latest edition of “frESH Law Horizons: Key Developments in UK & EU Environment, Safety and Health Law, Procedure and Policy”. In the November edition, we summarise 35 developments in the environmental, safety and health sector. Top stories this month include:

  • The Institute of Safety and Health responding to the Sentencing Guidelines on Manslaughter, which came into force on 1 November 2018
  • A director sentenced to eight months imprisonment, and his company fined £700,000, for breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act
  • The Home Office publishing its 2018 Report on Modern Slavery, which includes an assessment of modern slavery in the UK and a summary of the UK’s response to the issue
  • The launch of the multi-agency National Economic Crime Centre, as part of the government’s strategy to tackle serious and organized crime
  • The release of annual injury and health statistics in Great Britain, which show a fall in convictions, but an increase in fines

For more detailed information on these developments and access to the remaining summaries, download a copy from our website. Make sure you also subscribe to receive our most recent edition every month.

US BUILD Act Clarifies Tenant Standing for Bona Fide Prospective Purchaser Protections from Contaminated Property Liability

For LeaseWhen President Trump signed the omnibus spending bill on March 23, 2018, he also enacted the Brownfields Utilization, Investment, and Local Development Act of 2018 (BUILD Act) (not to be confused with the Better Utilization of Investments Leading to Development Act of 2018—yet another BUILD Act of 2018). Among the several provisions within the BUILD Act were some changes to how exceptions to CERCLA liability may be met, including clarification on how tenants may establish the Bona Fide Prospective Purchaser (BFPP) liability protection. Continue Reading

October 2018 Update: Key Developments in UK and EU Environment, Safety and Health Law, Procedure and Policy

Electronic NewsWe are pleased to share with you the latest edition of “frESH Law Horizons: Key Developments in UK & EU Environment, Safety and Health Law, Procedure and Policy”. In our October edition, we summarise more than 35 developments in the environmental, safety and health sector. Some of the top stories this month include:

  • The Health and Safety Executive announcing that it is to target the construction industry to assess its respiratory risks and occupational lung disease prevention measures
  • An Environment Agency report that shows how the Proceeds of Crime Act can be used to deal with corporate offences
  • A European Parliament resolution on potential uses for blockchain and other distributed ledger technology
  • The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) confirming it will not appeal the Court of Appeal decision in Serious Fraud Office v. Eurasian Natural Resources Corp Ltd
  • The SFO releasing a draft review of and recommendations for improvements to meat processing practices

For more detailed information on these developments, as well as access to the remaining summaries, make sure you download a copy from our website. You can also subscribe to ensure you receive our most recent edition every month.

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