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Weekly Update Volume 30, Issue 31

11/06/2000

LITIGATION
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Note: The cases listed are available from the ELR Document Service.

red bar graphic  CWA, STANDING, PERMIT VIOLATIONS:

The Ninth Circuit reversed a district court and held that two environmental groups had standing to bring citizen suits against a lumber company for CWA permit violations. The district court held that the groups did not have standing because the members' spatial and temporal contacts with the creek at issue were too sporadic and attenuated to satisfy injury-in-fact. The injury-in fact requirement, however, should not be reduced to inflexible, judicially mandated time or distance guidelines and can be satisfied by showing a connection to the area in concern that makes credible the contention that the person's future life will be less enjoyable if the area remains or becomes environmentally degraded. Both groups met the burden of showing an interest in the creek and that the interest had been diminished by the lumber company's alleged pollution. The groups did not need to show actual environmental harm to have standing. Further, the groups' alleged injuries are fairly traceable to the lumber company's conduct. The lumber company's remaining grounds for dismissal were rejected and the case was remanded in its entirety. Ecological Rights Foundation v. Pacific Lumber Co., No. 99-17076 (9th Cir. Oct. 30, 2000) (16 pp.).

red bar graphic  CERCLA, SUPERFUND RECYCLING EQUITY ACT, RETROACTIVITY:

The Third Circuit held that the Superfund Recycling Equity Act applies retroactively to judicial actions initiated by private parties prior to November 29, 1999, and, therefore, it vacated a district court grant of summary judgment in favor of a battery recycler who sought contribution costs from PRPs in connection with contamination at a battery recycling site. The battery recycler entered into a consent agreement with EPA under CERCLA for the contamination. The recycler then initiated a contribution action against PRPs, and the district court held the PRPs liable for a portion of the contamination. After the PRPs filed their notices of appeal, however, Congress passed the Superfund Recycling Equity Act. The Act states that it has no effect on any concluded judicial or administrative action or any pending judicial action initiated by the United States prior to November 29, 1999. Thus, because the Act is silent with respect to private parties, the Act may be applied retroactively in a judicial action initiated by a private party that is still pending as of November 29, 1999. Contrary to the recycler's argument, a private judicial action that was initiated following a related federal administrative action, in this case, the consent agreement, should not be deemed as having been initiated by the United States. Additionally, the Act does not violate the Fifth Amendment's due process guarantee for lacking a rational basis. The distinction between privately and federally initiated judicial actions is rationally related to preserving public finances. The court, therefore, remanded the case to determine whether the PRPs satisfy the Act's requirements for exemption from liability. Gould, Inc. v. A & M Battery & Tire Service, No. 99-3294 (3d Cir. Oct. 31, 2000) (15 pp.).

red bar graphic  DUE PROCESS, EQUAL PROTECTION, FIRST AMENDMENT:

The First Circuit affirmed a district court decision holding that various state environmental officials' delay in approving a permit to build a pier did not violate the applicants' due process, equal protection, or First Amendment rights. In 1991, the applicants, who own land on an island off the coast of Massachusetts where they operate a tree farm, applied for a permit to build a pier. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers was ready to grant the permit when environmental groups objected, thereby arousing the state officials' concern about the permit and causing environmental reviews and delays. Consequently, the permit was not granted until 1997. Despite this delay, the applicants failed to show how their due process and equal protection rights were violated. The officials' alleged misconduct--requests for investigations and allegations of federal violations--did not result in adverse action against the applicants. Moreover, the officials' review effort was not so irrational so as to violate the applicants' constitutional rights. Similarly, the applicants failed to demonstrate that the officials violated their First Amendment rights. There was no evidence that the officials delayed approval of the permit in retaliation of one of the applicants' opposition to a 1989 state law that never made it past the drafting stage. Baker v. Coxe, No. 99-1843 (1st Cir. Oct. 31, 2000) (9 pp.).

red bar graphic  MOOTNESS, VACATUR:

The Tenth Circuit held that a settlement agreement between an oil company and citizens suing the company under RCRA, and not EPA's withdrawal of its final administrative order (FAO) against the company, rendered moot the oil company's appeal of a district court decision upholding the FOA. Thus, the company's request to vacate the district court decision was denied. Although mootness caused by the unilateral action of a prevailing party justifies vacatur of a judgment under review, mootness by reason of settlement does not. Here, EPA's withdrawal of the FAO was not a unilateral action but a part of the settlement agreement. EPA agreed to withdraw its FAO as a condition to the settlement agreement. Amoco Oil Co. v. United States Environmental Protection Agency, No. 99-1534 (10th Cir. Oct. 31, 2000) (6 pp.).

red bar graphic  CWA, DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION (DOT) ACT, NEPA, HIGHWAY PROJECT:

A district court held that the statutes environmental groups were using to challenge a highway project in Pennsylvania--the CWA, NEPA, and the DOT Act--had been repealed by implication by Congress insofar as they would apply to the highway project at issue. In an appropriations bill, Congress directed the construction of the highway project "nothwithstanding any other provisions of law." This language is clear and unambiguous and reveals Congress' intent to suspend operation of the environmental laws on which the groups base their claims. Further, the groups' argument that the bill's language is not sufficiently specific to reflect an intent on the part of Congress to preclude judicial review of administrative action is appealing, but not compelling. In the bill, Congress directed that the Federal Highway Administration's record of decision was to remain in effect, thereby turning it into a legislative and not an administrative action. Therefore, there is no administrative action of which the groups may seek review. Additionally, Congress' bill removes from the administrative agencies any discretion they may have had, thus, the groups cannot seek review for abuse of discretion. Bald Eagle Ridge Protection Ass'n v. Mallory, No. 4:CV-00-187 (M.D. Pa. Oct. 24, 2000) (McClure, J.) (11 pp.).

red bar graphic  RCRA, HAZARDOUS CHEMICAL CLEANUP, SOIL VAPOR EXTRACTION (SVE):

A district court refused to preliminarily enjoin a lessee from using an SVE cleanup method during the remediation of its leased property or to require the lessee to remediate all contamination at the site. The lessee subleased the property at issue to a dry cleaner who released hazardous chemicals into the environment. After discovering the contamination, the lessee entered into a voluntary cleanup agreement with the state environmental agency that called for the removal and treatment of surrounding soil, but did not provide for the testing or remediation of surrounding bedrock and groundwater. While performing the cleanup, the lessee discovered that the contamination extended further than originally expected and, on the advice of environmental engineers, began to install an SVE system. The owners of the property objected to the use of the SVE system and asked for an injunction that would require the lessee to fully remediate all contamination at the site, including potential bedrock and groundwater contamination. However, the owners are not likely to succeed in proving that the planned cleanup and the decision not to investigate the bedrock or groundwater for contamination poses an imminent and substantial endangerment to health or the environment, as is required to secure an injunction. The use of the SVE system was approved by the state environmental agency, and the agency reserved the right to insist on additional measures if it is not satisfied with the results of the SVE system's measures. Further, if all contaminated soil was removed from under the property, as the landowner requests, there is a very real danger that it would undermine the foundation of the building or of adjacent buildings. Additionally, the owner failed to offer any credible evidence of likely groundwater and bedrock contamination. Moreover, the owner has failed to show any irreparable injury under RCRA. Additionally, the owner's breach of lease claims did not merit injunctive relief. Christie-Spencer Corp. v. Hausman Realty Co., Inc., No. 00 Civ. 7801(CM) (S.D.N.Y. Oct. 23, 2000) (McMahon, J.) (16 pp.).

red bar graphic CAA, ONBOARD DIAGNOSTIC (OBD) SYSTEMS, JURISDICTION:

A district court denied a motion to dismiss EPA's suit against an automobile manufacturer under CAA §203(a)(1) for introducing into commerce new motor vehicles that were materially different from the corresponding vehicles described in the manufacturer's certificate applications and the certificates of conformity subsequently issued by EPA. The alleged material difference pertains to the vehicles' OBD systems. The manufacturer chose to demonstrate compliance with California's OBD system requirements for model years 1996 through 1998 in lieu of federal OBD requirements. After EPA issued the certificate of conformity, the California state agency in charge of monitoring OBD systems discovered that the manufacturers' systems were not in compliance with the regulations and initiated an administrative proceeding. Subsequently, EPA filed suit under CAA §203(a)(1). The manufacturer argued that the doctrine of primary jurisdiction should be invoked in favor of the state agency because EPA's case and the state administrative case raise the same issue that is already before an agency, involves technical and scientific questions, and presents a danger of inconsistent state and federal orders. However, the doctrine does not apply here because the federal OBD regime does not place resolution of the issues overlapping the state agency proceeding and this case within the special competence of the state agency. Additionally, there is little danger of conflicting state and federal decisions because EPA takes into account the state agency's certification results in determining whether OBD requirements are met. Further, the Burford abstention doctrine does not apply because this case does not present a dispute over an essentially local problem in which California's interests are paramount. Finally, the Colorado River abstention doctrine is not applicable to this case because the presence of federal law issues and the significant discrepancies between the two proceedings outweigh those factors counseling judicial restraint. United States v. Toyota Motor Corp., No. Civ.A.99-1888 SSH (D.D.C. Oct. 10, 2000) (Harris, J.) (11 pp.).

Copyright© 2000, Environmental Law Institute, Washington, D.C. All rights reserved

THE FEDERAL AGENCIES
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Note: Citations below are to the Federal Register.

red bar graphic  AIR:

  • EPA requested applications for exemptions to the production and import phaseout of ozone-depleting substances for consideration at the 13th Meeting of the Parties to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer. 65 FR 65311 (11/1/00).  

red bar graphic  HAZARDOUS WASTES AND SUBSTANCES:

  • EPA approved revisions to Arizona's hazardous waste program under RCRA. 65 FR 64369 (10/27/00).

red bar graphic  PESTICIDES:

  • EPA announced the availability of a draft national action plan to address the remaining risks to the level 1 priority persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic pesticide pollutants. 65 FR 65314 (11/1/00). 

red bar graphic  SMCRA PROGRAM APPROVAL:

red bar graphic  TOXIC SUBSTANCES:

  • EPA proposed to clarify that U.S. territories and possessions that fall outside the definition of "customs territory of the United States" may dispose of their PCB waste in the U.S. mainland where facilities are available that can properly dispose of PCB waste. 65 FR 65653 (11/1/00). 

red bar graphic  WATER QUALITY: 

  • EPA proposed a class II settlement under CWA §309(g) of $137,500 against two development companies for violating their NPDES permits at the Catalina Shadows Development Phase 4 in Oro Valley, Ariz. 65 FR 66247 (11/3/00). 
  • EPA announced the availability of final revisions to the Methodology for Deriving Ambient Water Quality Criteria for the Protection of Human Health. 65 FR 66443 (11/3/00). 
  • EPA Regions 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, 8, 9, and 10 reissued EPA's NPDES stormwater multisector general permit, which authorizes the discharge of stormwater from industrial facilities. 65 FR 64745 (10/30/00).

red bar graphic  WILDLIFE:

  • NOAA announced the availability of the Guidelines for Economic Analysis of Fishery Management Actions. 65 FR 65841 (11/2/00).

red bar graphic  DOJ NOTICES OF SETTLEMENTS:

  • U.S. v. American Scrap Co., No. 1:99-CV-2047 (M.D. Pa. Oct. 19, 2000) (settling CERCLA defendants must pay $140,000 in past U.S. response costs incurred at the Jack's Creek/Sitkin Smelting Superfund site in Mifflin County, Pa.), 65 FR 65879 (11/2/00);
  • U.S. v. Blue River Exploration, Inc., No. 4:99 CV-10-M (W.D. Ky. Oct. 24, 2000) (settling SDWA defendants that own and operate underground injection wells in Daviess and Hopkins Counties, Ky., must pay a $10,000 civil penalty and must plug and abandon all of their underground injection wells by September 30, 2001, in accordance with an EPA-approved plugging and abandonment plan), 65 FR 65879 (11/2/00).

Copyright© 2000, Environmental Law Institute, Washington, D.C. All rights reserved  

THE CONGRESS
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red bar graphic PUBLIC LAWS

  • S. 624 (water resources), which authorizes construction of the Fort Peck Reservation Rural Water System in Montana, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 27, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-382, 114 Stat. 1451.
  • S. 1236 (hydroelectric power; Arrowrock Dam), which extends the deadline under the Federal Power Act for commencement of the construction of the Arrowrock Dam hydroelectric project in Idaho, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 19, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-343, 114 Stat. 1317. 
  • S. 1849 (wild and scenic rivers), which designates segments and tributaries of White Clay Creek, Delaware and Pennsylvania, as a component of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 24, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-357, 114 Stat. 1393.
  • H.R. 34 (Coastal Barrier Resources System), which directs the Secretary of the Interior to make technical corrections to a map relating to the Coastal Barrier Resources System, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 27, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-360, 114 Stat. 1399.
  • H.R. 1695 (land conveyance), which provides for the conveyance of certain federal public lands in the Ivanpah Valley, Nevada, to Clark County, Nevada, for the development of an airport facility, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 27, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-362, 114 Stat. 1404.
  • H.R. 2778 (wild and scenic rivers), which amends the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act to designate segments of the Taunton River in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts for study for potential addition to the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 19, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-318, 114 Stat. 1278.
  • H.R. 2833 (Yuma Crossing National Heritage Area), which establishes the Yuma Crossing National Heritage Area in Arizona, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 19, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-319, 114 Stat. 1280.
  • H.R. 2984 (water resources), which directs the Secretary of the Interior, through the Bureau of Reclamation, to convey to the Loup Basin Reclamation District, the Sargent River Irrigation District, and the Farwell Irrigation District, Nebraska, property comprising the assets of the Middle Loup Division of the Missouri River Basin Project, Nebraska, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 27, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-366, 114 Stat. 1410.
  • H.R. 3236 (water rights), which authorizes the Secretary of the Interior to enter into contracts with the Weber Basin Water Conservancy District, Utah, to use Weber Basin Project facilities for the impounding, storage, and carriage of nonproject water for domestic, municipal, industrial, and other beneficial purposes, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 27, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-368, 114 Stat. 1416.
  • H.R. 3292 (Cat Island National Wildlife Refuge), which provides for the establishment of the Cat Island National Wildlife Refuge in West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 27, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-369, 114 Stat. 1417.
  • H.R. 3468 (water rights), which directs the Secretary of the Interior to convey certain water rights to Duchesne City, Utah, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 27, 2000. Pub .L. No. 106-370, 114 Stat. 1421.
  • H.R. 3577 (water resources), which increases the amount of water authorized to be appropriated for the north side pumping division of the Minidoka reclamation project, Idaho, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 27, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-371, 114 Stat. 1424.
  • H.R. 3676 (Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument), which establishes the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument in California, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 24, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-351, 114 Stat. 1362.
  • H.R. 3745 (Effigy Mounds National Monument), which authorizes the addition of certain parcels to the Effigy Mounds National Monument, Iowa, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 19, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-323, 114 Stat. 1289.
  • H.R. 3817 (national trails), which dedicates the Big South Trail in the Comanche Peak Wilderness Area of Roosevelt National Forest in Colorado to the legacy of Jaryd Atadero, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 19, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-324; 114 Stat. 1291.
  • H.R. 3986 (water resources), which provides for a study of the engineering feasibility of a water exchange in lieu of electrification of the Chandler Pumping Plant at Prosser Diversion Dam, Washington, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 27, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-372, 114 Stat. 1425.
  • H.R. 4132 (water resources), which reauthorizes grants for water resources research and technology institutes established under the Water Resources Research Act of 1984, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 27, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-374, 114 Stat. 1434.
  • H.R. 4226 (Black Hills National Forest), which authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to sell or exchange all or part of certain administrative sites and other land in the Black Hills National Forest and to use funds derived from the sale or exchange to acquire replacement sites and to acquire or construct administrative improvements in connection with the Black Hills National Forest, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 19, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-329, 114 Stat. 1296.
  • H.R. 4275 (Colorado Canyons National Conservation Area and Black Ridge Canyons Wilderness), which establishes the Colorado Canyons National Conservation Area and the Black Ridge Canyons Wilderness in Colorado, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 24, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-353, 114 Stat. 1374.
  • H.R. 4285 (Texas National Forests), which authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to convey certain administrative sites for National Forest System lands in Texas, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 19, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-330, 114 Stat. 1299. The law also conveys certain National Forest System land in Texas to the New Waverly Gulf Coast Trades Center.
  • H.R. 4286 (Cahaba River National Wildlife Refuge), which provides for the establishment of the Cahaba River National Wildlife Refuge in Bibb County, Alabama, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 19, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-331, 114 Stat. 1303.
  • H.R. 4389 (water resources), which directs the Secretary of the Interior to convey certain water distribution facilities to the Northern Colorado Water Conservancy District, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 27, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-376, 114 Stat. 1439.
  • H.R. 4435 (Coastal Barrier Resources System), which clarifies certain boundaries on the map relating to Unit NC-01 of the Coastal Barrier Resources System, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 19, 2000. Pub.L. No. 106-332, 114 Stat. 1306.
  • H.R. 4475 (appropriations; DOT), which makes appropriations for the DOT and related agencies for the fiscal year ending September 30, 2001, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 19, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-346, 114 Stat. 1356.
  • H.R. 4635 (appropriations; EPA), which makes appropriations for the Departments of Veterans Affairs and Housing and Urban Development, and for sundry independent agencies, including EPA, for the 2001 fiscal year, was signed into law by President Clinton on October 27, 2000. Pub. L. No. 106-37, 114 Stat. 1441.

red bar graphic  CHAMBER ACTION

  • S. 1670 (Fort Matanzas, Florida National Monument), which would revise the boundary of Fort Matanzas National Monument, was passed by the House, clearing the measure for the President. 146 CONG. REC. H11706 (daily ed. Oct. 31, 2000).
  • S. 1761 (water resources), which would direct the Secretary of the Interior, through the Bureau of Reclamation, to conserve and enhance the water supplies of the Lower Rio Grande Valley, was passed by the Senate. 146 CONG. REC. S11276 (daily ed. Oct. 27, 2000).
  • S. 2020 (Natchez Trace Parkway), which would adjust the boundary of the Natchez Trace Parkway in Mississippi, was passed by the House, clearing the measure for the President. 146 CONG. REC. H11707 (daily ed. Oct. 31, 2000).
  • S. 2485 (Saint Croix Island Heritage Center), which would direct the Secretary of the Interior to provide assistance in planning and constructing a regional heritage center in Calais, Maine, was passed by the House, clearing the measure for the President. 146 CONG. REC. H11555 (daily ed. Oct. 30, 2000).
  • S. 2508 (water rights), which would amend the Colorado Ute Indian Water Rights Settlement Act of 1988 to provide for a final settlement of the claims of the Colorado Ute Indian Tribes, was passed by the Senate. 146 CONG. REC. S10984 (daily ed. Oct. 25, 2000).
  • S. 2547 (Great Sand Dunes National Preserve), which would provide for the establishment of the Great Sand Dunes National Park and the Great Sand Dunes National Preserve in Colorado, was passed by the House, clearing the measure for the President. 146 CONG. REC. H10843 (daily ed. Oct. 25, 2000).
  • S. 2638 (Gulf Islands National Seashore), which would adjust the boundaries of the Gulf Islands National Seashore to include Cat Island, Mississippi, was passed by the Senate. 146 CONG. REC. S11275 (daily ed. 10/27).
  • S. 2751 (land conveyance), which would direct the Secretary of Agriculture to convey certain land in the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, Nevada, to the Secretary of the Interior, in trust for the Washoe Indian Tribe of Nevada and California, was passed by the Senate. 146 CONG. REC. S11274 (daily ed. Oct. 27, 2000).
  • H.R. 1235 (water rights), which would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to enter into contracts with the Solano County Water Agency, California, to use Solano Project facilities for impounding, storage, and carriage of nonproject water for domestic, municipal, industrial, and other beneficial purposes, was passed by the Senate, clearing the measure for the President. 146 CONG. REC. S11276 (daily ed. Oct. 27, 2000).
  • H.R. 2903 (coral reef conservation), which would assist in the conservation of coral reefs, was passed by the House. 146 CONG. REC. H11704 (daily ed. Oct. 31, 2000). 
  • H.R. 2941 (Las Cienegas National Conservation Area), which would establish the Las Cienegas National Conservation Area in Arizona, was passed by the Senate, clearing the measure for the President. 146 CONG. REC. S11274 (daily ed. Oct. 27, 2000).
  • H.R. 3388 (Lake Tahoe), which would promote environmental restoration around the Lake Tahoe basin, was passed by the Senate, clearing the measure for the President. 146 CONG. REC. S11275 (daily ed. Oct. 27, 2000).
  • H.R. 4020 (Dillonwood Giant Sequoia Grove Park), which would authorize an expansion of the boundaries of Sequoia National Park to include Dillonwood Giant Sequoia Grove, was passed by the House. 146 CONG. REC. H11707 (daily ed. Oct. 31, 2000).
  • H.R. 4312 (Upper Housatonic National Heritage Area), which would direct the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a study of the suitability and feasibility of establishing an Upper Housatonic Valley National Heritage Area in Connecticut and Massachusetts, was passed by the Senate, clearing the measure for the President. 146 CONG. REC. S11274 (daily ed. Oct. 27, 2000).
  • H.R. 4646 (Virginia wilderness), which would designate certain National Forest System lands within the boundaries of Virginia as wilderness areas, was passed by the Senate, clearing the measure for the President. 146 CONG. REC. S11274 (daily ed. Oct. 27, 2000).
  • H.R. 4794 (national trails), which would require the Secretary of the Interior to complete a resource study of the 600 mile route through Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Virginia, used by George Washington and General Rochambeau during the American Revolutionary War, was passed by the Senate, clearing the measure for the President. 146 CONG. REC. S11276 (daily ed. Oct. 27, 2000).
  • H.R. 5331 (Frederick Douglass Memorial), which would authorize the Frederick Douglass Gardens, Inc., to establish a memorial and gardens on DOI lands in the District of Columbia or its environs in honor and commemoration of Frederick Douglass, was passed by the Senate, clearing the measure for the President. 146 CONG. REC. S11180 (daily ed. Oct. 26, 2000).
  • H.R. 5461 (shark finning), which would amend the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act to eliminate the wasteful and unsportsmanlike practice of shark finning, was passed by the House. 146 CONG. REC. H11570 (daily ed. Oct. 30, 2000).

red bar graphic  COMMITTEE ACTION

  • S. 2665 (Native American lands) was reported by the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs. S. REP. NO 511, 146 CONG. REC. H11716 (daily ed. Oct. 31, 2000). The bill would establish a streamlined process to enable the Navajo Nation to lease trust lands without having to obtain the approval of the Secretary of the Interior of individual leases, except leases for exploration, development, or extraction of any mineral resources. 
  • H.R. 1142 (property rights) was reported by the House Committee on Resources. H. REP. NO. 1011, 146 CONG. REC. H11206 (daily ed. Oct. 26, 2000). The bill ensure that landowners receive treatment equal to that provided to the federal government when property must be used.
  • H.R. 1500 (wilderness) was reported by the House Committee on Resources. H. REP. NO. 1017, 146 CONG. REC. H11620. The bill would accelerate the wilderness designation process by establishing a timetable for the completion of wilderness studies on federal lands.
  • H.R. 1524 (forestry) was reported by the House Committee on Resources. H. REP. NO. 1021, 146 CONG. REC. H11716 (daily ed. Oct. 31, 2000). The bill would authorize the continued use on public lands of the expedited forestry processes successfully used for windstorm-damaged national forests and grasslands in Texas.
  • H.R. 3033 (Biscayne National Park) was reported by the House Committee on Resources. H. REP. NO. 1010, 146 CONG. REC. H11206 (daily ed. Oct. 26, 2000). The bill would direct the Secretary of the Interior to make certain adjustments to the boundaries of Biscayne National Park in Florida.
  • H.R. 3160 (ESA) was reported by the House Committee on Resource. H. REP. NO. 1013, 146 CONG. REC. H11206 (daily ed. Oct. 26, 2000). The bill would reauthorize and amend the ESA.
  • H.R. 4340 (oil and gas royalties) was reported by the House Committee on Resources. H. REP. NO. 1012, 146 CONG. REC. H11206 (daily ed. Oct. 26, 2000). The bill would simplify federal oil and gas revenue distributions.
  • H.R. 5130 (water resources) was reported by the House Committee on Resources. H. REP. NO. 1018, 146 CONG. REC. 11620 (daily ed. Oct. 30, 2000). The bill would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to provide cost sharing for the CALFED water enhancement programs in California.

red bar graphic  BILLS INTRODUCED

  • S. 3232 (Boxer, D-Cal.) (water resources) would amend the Reclamation Wastewater and Groundwater Study and Facilities Act to authorize certain projects in California for the use or reuse of reclaimed water and for the design and construction of demonstration and permanent facilities for that purpose. 146 Cong. Rec. S10999 (daily ed. Oct. 25, 2000). The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. A companion bill, H.R. 5555, was introduced in the House this period.
  • S. 3234 (Breaux, D-La.) (sport fishing) would protect the public's ability to fish for sport. 146 CONG. REC. S10999 (daily ed. Oct. 25, 2000). The bill was referred to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation.
  • S. 3237 (McCain, R-Ariz.) (global climate change) would provide for an international scientific commission to assess changes in global climate patterns, and to conduct scientific studies and analyses on behalf of nations. 146 CONG. REC. S10999 (daily ed. Oct. 25, 2000). The bill was referred to the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation. 
  • S. 3253 (McConnell, R-Ky.) (coal energy) would authorize DOE programs to develop and implement an accelerated research and development program for advanced clean coal technologies for use in coal-based electricity generating facilities and to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to provide financial incentives to encourage the retrofitting, repowering, or replacement of coal-based electricity generating facilities to protect the environment and improve efficiency and encourage the early commercial application of advanced clean coal technologies, so as to allow coal to help meet the growing need of the United States for the generation of reliable and affordable electricity. 146 CONG. REC. S11252 (daily ed. Oct. 27, 2000). The bill was referred to the Committee on Finance.
  • S. 3256 (Lincoln, D-Ark.) (land exchange) would authorize the Secretary of Agriculture to sell or exchange all or part of certain administrative sites and other land in the Ozark-St. Francis and Ouachita National Forests and to use funds derived from the sale or exchange to acquire, construct, or improve administrative sites. 146 CONG. REC. S11251 (daily ed. Oct. 27, 2000). The bill was referred to the Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry.
  • S. 3268 (Smith, R-Or.) (Oil Pollution Act) would amend the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 to improve provisions concerning the recovery of damages for injuries resulting from oil spills. 146 CONG. REC. S11494 (daily ed. Nov. 1, 2000). The bill was referred to the Committee on Environment and Public Works. A companion bill, H.R. 5617, was introduced in the Senate this period.
  • H.R. 5555 (Miller, D-Cal.) (water resources) would amend the Reclamation Wastewater and Groundwater Study and Facilities Act to authorize certain projects in California for the use or reuse of reclaimed water and for the design and construction of demonstration and permanent facilities for that purpose. 146 CONG. REC. H11194 (daily ed. Oct. 25, 2000). The bill was referred to the Committee on Resources. A companion bill, S. 3232, was introduced in the Senate this period.
  • H.R. 5565 (Young, R-Alaska) (fisheries) would amend the Magnunson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act to improve implementation of the western Alaska community development fisheries quota program. 146 CONG. REC. H11206 (daily ed. Oct. 26, 2000). The bill was referred to the Committee on Resources. 
  • H.R. 5585 (Larson, D-Conn.) (energy conservation) would provide for the energy self-sufficiency of the United States by 2010. 146 CONG. REC. H11206 (daily ed. Oct. 26, 2000). The bill was referred to the Committees on Commerce, Science, and Government Reform.
  • H.R. 5600 (Horn, R-Cal.) (regulatory reform) would establish an Office of Management in the Executive Office of the President, and would redesignate the Office of Management and Budget as the Office of the Federal Budget. 146 CONG. REC. H11526 (daily ed. Oct. 29, 2000). The bill was referred to the Committee on Government Reform. 
  • H.R. 5606 (Pallone, D-N.J.) (CWA) would amend the CWA to improve the enforcement and compliance programs. 146 CONG. REC. H11621 (daily ed. Oct. 30, 2000). The bill was referred to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.
  • H.R. 5617 (Defazio, D-Or.) (Oil Pollution Act) would amend the Oil Pollution Act of 1990 to improve provisions concerning the recovery of damages for injuries resulting from oil spills. 146 CONG. REC. H11781 (daily ed. Nov. 1, 2000). The bill was referred to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure. A companion bill, S. 3268, was introduced in the Senate this period. 
  • H.R. 5618 (Hayworth, R-Ariz.) (land conveyance) would authorize the Secretary of Agriculture to convey National Forest System Lands for use for educational purposes. 146 CONG. REC. H11871 (daily ed. Nov. 1, 2000). The bill was referred to the Committee on Resources.

IN THE STATES
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red bar graphic ALABAMA

Dept. of Envtl. Management

Proposed Regulations-Air Quality

Proposed Regulations-Water Quality

Proposed Regulations-Hazardous Waste

Approved UST Fund Contractors

Proposed TMDLs

Public Notices–Permit Applications 

Daily Ozone Forecast

Jefferson County Dept. of Health

Daily Air Quality Index

red bar graphic  ALASKA

Dept. of Envtl. Conservation

Proposed Regulations-Air

red bar graphic ARIZONA

Dept. of Envtl. Quality

Proposed Regulations-Voluntary Remediation

Draft TMDLs

Water Quality-Grant Applications

Water Quality-CWA §305(b) Report

Superfund Program-Proposed Registry Inclusions, Prospective Purchaser Agreements

Arizona Emissions Bank

red bar graphic CALIFORNIA

Air Resources Board

Carl Moyer Program Guidelines

  • Proposed revisions to the guidelines, which address Program grants for the capital costs of lower-emission heavy duty vehicles and equipment, will be discussed at a Nov. 16 public hearing. See http://www.arb.ca.gov

Proposed Regulations-Tier 2 Exhaust Standards

Proposed Regulations-Emission Test Procedures

2000 California Emissions Inventory

Off-road Equipment Evaporative Emissions

Zero-Emission Vehicles (ZEVs)

Final "Smog Check" Report

Dept. of Toxic Substances Control

Proposed Permit-by-Rule

Management Memo Review

  • 54 "Management Memos" issued by DTSC that pertain to the Hazardous Waste Management Program. See http://www.dtsc.ca.gov

Draft Regulations-Land Use Covenants

Draft Permit

  • For hazardous waste permit to DeMenno/Kerdoon, Compton. Comments due Nov. 7. See http://www.dtsc.ca.gov/ (click on "What's New"). 

Integrated Waste Management Board

Emergency Regulations-Disposal of Nonhazardous Waste at Hazardous Waste Landfills

Water Resources Control Board

Sanitary Sewer and Treatment Facility Survey

Water Rights Allocation Hearing

South Coast Air Quality Management District

Proposed Regulations-New Source Review

Proposed Regulations-Film Cleaning and Printing

  • Proposed Rule 1425 would apply to motion picture film operations using substances such as perchloroethylene for film cleaning. Workshop Nov. 15. Written comments due Nov. 29. See http://www.aqmd.gov/pub_edu/notice_r1425.html

Proposed Regulations-On-Road Motor Vehicle Mitigation Options

  • Proposed amended Rule 2202 would delete alternative fuel vehicle credits and include recently adopted Air Resources Board emission factors. The amendments are deemed necessary for Rule 2202 to become consistent with state standards. Public workshop Nov. 15. See http://www.aqmd.gov/pub_edu/notice_r2202.html

Proposed Regulations-VOC Emissions from Spray Booths

red bar graphic COLORADO

Hazardous Waste Commission

Proposed Regulations-Universal Waste

  • Proposed extension of universal waste regulations to include mercury-containing devices, in addition to thermostats, subject of Commission hearing Nov. 21. See http://www.cdphe.state.co.us

Proposed Regulations-Treatment Sludges from Metal Finishing 

  • Proposed rules would implement U.S. EPA standards for 180-day accumulation time for waste water treatment sludges from the metal finishing industry. See http://www.cdphe.state.co.us

House Bill 00-1306 Implementation

  • Draft prioritization criteria for the implementation of provisions of bill that authorize state authority to clean up "orphan" sites available for comment through Nov. 17; will be considered at Commission hearing Nov. 21. See http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/hm/rp_gen.asp

Air Quality Control Commission

Proposed Regulations

  • Proposed revisions to Regulation No. 3, Part A, regarding regulation of open burning on federal lands. Public hearing Nov. 17. See http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/op/SB-145_8-00.html
  • Proposed revisions to Regulation No. 11, regarding motor vehicle emissions, to modify the time period allowed for making valid readings of vehicle emissions through the use of remote sensing equipment. Public hearing Nov. 16. See http://www.cdpdhe.state.co.us/op/Reg11_8-00.html
  • Proposed revisions to Regulation No. 5, Part B, regarding emissions trading and banking, to provide verification of emission reduction credits, establish a baseline year, condition the regulation upon annual appropriations, and incorporate pollution prevention criteria. Public hearing Nov. 16. See http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/op/Reg5_8-00.html
  • Proposed redesignation request and maintenance plan for the Aspen PM-10 nonattainment area. Jan. 11, 2001, is the hearing date. See http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/op/aspenpm10hear.html
  • Proposed revisions to Regulation No. 6, Part A, to adopt U.S. EPA revisions and updates regarding control of Hazardous Air Pollutants (HAPs). Jan. 11, 2001, is the hearing date. See http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/op/Reg6Ahear.html

Water Quality Control Commission

Proposed Regulations

red bar graphic DELAWARE

Dept. of Nat. Resources and Envtl. Control

Notices of Violation

Regulatory Update

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red bar graphic FLORIDA

Dept. of Envtl. Protection

Proposed Regulations-Quality Assurance Rule

Drinking Water Operator Certification

Stormwater Regulation

Reuse Reports

red bar graphic GEORGIA

Dept. of Natural Resources, Envtl. Prot. Division

Proposed Regulations-Air Quality

Proposed Regulations-Water Quality

Air Permit Applications

NPDES Permit Applications

red bar graphic HAWAII

Office of Envtl. Quality Control

Environmental Impact Notices

red bar graphic IDAHO

Dept. of Envtl. Quality

Outstanding Resource Waters-Petitions

Risk Based Corrective Action

red bar graphic ILLINOIS

Pollution Control Board

Open Regulatory Dockets

Envtl. Protection Agency

Chicago Nonattainment State Implementation Plan (SIP)

Draft TMDLs

Permit Applications

Strategic Planning Process

Clean Lakes Program Grants Available

  • Approximately $750,000 available for distribution. Amy Walkenbach at IEPA is the contact ((217)782-3362). 

red bar graphic INDIANA

Dept. of Envtl. Management

Proposed Regulations-Air Quality

  • Adds 326 IAC 20-30 concerning NESHAPs for oil and natural gas production. Adds 326 IAC 20-31 concerning natural gas transmission and storage. Adds 326 IAC 20-32 concerning POTWs.
  • Amends 326 IAC 6-1 concerning nonattainment area particulate limitations.
  • Amendments to rules concerning sulfur dioxide (SO2) emission limitations in Lake County.

Final Regulations-Solid Waste

  • Adds 329 IAC 15 to establish requirements for management of waste tires, including requirements adopted in Public Law 93-1998. Repeals 329 IAC 12-5 and 329 IAC 12-6. Note: Under IC 4-22-2-40, LSA Document #98-96, printed at 22 IR 3137, was recalled by the Solid Waste Management Board. This document was revised and readopted.

Final Regulations-Water Quality

  • Adds 327 IAC 5-16, 327 IAC 5-17, 327 IAC 5-18, 327 IAC 5-19, 327 IAC 5-20, and 327 IAC 5-21 concerning  industrial wastewater pretreatment in order to comply with the federal regulations and to acquire federal delegation of the state's pretreatment program. Repeals 327 IAC 5-11, 327 IAC 5-12, 327 IAC 5-13, 327 IAC 5-14, and 327 IAC 5-15.
  • Amends 327 IAC 5-2-11.7 concerning Great Lakes system dischargers interim antidegradation implementation procedures for outstanding state resource waters.

Proposed Regulations-Water Quality

  • Adds 327 IAC 16 concerning confined feeding operations.

The above notices may be viewed at http://www.state.in.us/legislative/register/November-1-2000.html

Indiana Environment Online

Upper White River Watershed

red bar graphic IOWA

Dept. of Natural Resources

Final Regulations-Water Quality

Proposed Regulations-Water Quality

  • Proposed regulations would implement Onsite Wastewater State Revolving Fund, to provide low-interest loans to private individuals needing to update or replace their existing onsite septic systems. Comments were due Oct. 24. See http://www.state.ia.us/epd/wtrsuply/septic.htm

red bar graphic KENTUCKY

Dept. for Envtl. Protection, Division of Water

Public Hearing Notices

Permit Applications

red bar graphic LOUISIANA

Dept. of Envtl. Quality

Proposed Regulations

Final Regulations-Stormwater

Permit Applications

Semiannual Regulatory Agenda

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red bar graphic MAINE

Dept. of Envtl. Protection

Proposed Regulations-Air Quality

Final Regulations-Oil Terminals/Pipelines

red bar graphic MARYLAND

Dept. of the Environment

Public Meetings/Hearings

Water Quality Standard-Triennial Review

red bar graphic MASSACHUSETTS

Dept. of Envtl. Protection

Enforcement Actions

red bar graphic  MICHIGAN

Dept. of Envtl. Quality

Permitting Calendar

Permit Applications-Air

 Air Quality Division Newsletter

Surface Water Quality Division Bulletin

Surface Water Quality Division-Draft Regulations

red bar graphic MINNESOTA

Pollution Control Agency

Permit Applications, Other Notices

Penalty Assessment

red bar graphic  MISSOURI

Dept. of Natural Resources

Water Pollution Control-Permit Applications

red bar graphic MONTANA

Dept. of Envtl. Quality

Public Comment Notices

red bar graphic NEBRASKA

Dept. of Envtl. Quality

Proposed Regulations-Hazardous Waste

Settlement Agreement

Proposed Regulations

red bar graphic NEVADA

Division of Envtl. Protection

Proposed Regulations

red bar graphic NEW JERSEY

Dept. of Envtl. Protection

Draft Watershed Management Rules

Current DEP Bulletin (Permit Applications; Proposed Regulations)

red bar graphic NEW MEXICO

Water Quality Control Commission

Proposed Regulations-Liquid Waste Disposal

Proposed TMDLs

red bar graphic NEW YORK

Dept. of Envtl. Conservation

Pesticide Reporting Law Workshops

Environmental Notice Bulletin (Permit Applications)

Permit Applications

red bar graphic  NORTH CAROLINA

Environmental Management Commission

Proposed Regulations-Groundwater Quality

Dept. of Envt. and Natural Resources

Division of Air Quality Penalty Assessments

DENR Enforcement Data

Water Quality-Basinwide Assessment Reports

red bar graphic OHIO

Envtl. Protection Agency

OPEA Actions, Notices by County

Public Meetings

Pending Air Permits

red bar graphic OKLAHOMA

Dept. of Envtl. Quality

Draft Source Water Assessment and Protection Program Document

red bar graphic OREGON

Dept. of Envtl. Quality

Water Quality Permit Applications

Proposed Regulations

Public Notices-Cleanup Remedies

Public Notices-Remedial Actions

red bar graphic PENNSYLVANIA

Dept. of Envtl. Protection

Final Regulations-Interstate Ozone Transport

Final General NPDES Permit-CAFO Operations

Final Regulations-Air

NPDES Permit Applications

Water Quality Standard Review

General Permit Extension-Stormwater

Draft Technical Guidance Documents

red bar graphic SOUTH CAROLINA

Dept. of Health and Envtl. Control

Permit Application Notices

red bar graphic  TENNESSEE

Dept. of Environment and Conservation

Proposed TMDL

Permit Applications

Grant Availability-Recycling Marketing

red bar graphic  TEXAS

Natural Resource Conservation Commission

Stormwater Program-Delegation

TNRCC, Airlines Agreement

Proposed Regulations

Permit Hearings

Public Hearings Proposed Rules

Sunset Advisory Commission

red bar graphic  UTAH

Dept. of Envtl. Quality

Permit Applications

red bar graphic VERMONT

Dept. of Envtl. Conservation

Permit Applications

red bar graphic VIRGINIA

Dept. of Envtl. Quality

Proposed Regulations-Solid Waste Management

  • Proposed regulations for solid waste management planning. Public hearings scheduled for Nov. 6 (Williamsburg), 12 (Roanoke) and 14 (Woodbridge). See http://www.deq.state.va.us

Proposed Regulations-Dispute Resolution

Proposed Regulations-Water Quality

Proposed Regulations-TMDLs

Proposed Regulations-VPDES General Permits

Proposed Regulations-Air Quality

RCRA Program Authorization

Public Meeting Notices

red bar graphic  WASHINGTON

Dept. of Ecology

Adopted Regulations

Proposed Regulations

red bar graphic WEST VIRGINIA

Dept. of Envtl. Protection

Public Notice Bulletin (Permit Applications, Proposed Regulations)

red bar graphic WISCONSIN

Dept. of Natural Resources

Public Hearing and Meeting Schedule

Copyright© 2000, Environmental Law Institute, Washington, D.C. All rights reserved.

INTERNATIONAL
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red bar graphic GENERAL

  • The U.N. Environment Program (UNEP) concluded a meeting in Nairobi with the release of a draft program that builds upon its "Montevideo Program." UNEP Executive Director Klaus Toepfer said that "[t]he evolving framework of international environmental law and the development of national law provide a sound basis for addressing the major environmental threats of the day. To this end, UNEP's environmental law program must be further strengthened to meet such demands." The UNEP awarded its Sasakawa Environmental Prize to Dr. Michel Batisse, one of the pioneers of the sustainable development movement.
  • More than 100 representatives from over 100 countries convened in Geneva to consider adding two carcinogenic pesticides, ethylene oxide and ethylene dichloride, to banned chemicals pursuant to the  Rotterdam Convention on the Prior Informed Consent (PIC) Procedure for Certain Hazardous Chemicals and Pesticides in International Trade.

  • The United States will propose international standards for establishing maximum residue limits for pesticides that would bypass the typical Codex Alimentarius, on the ground that action is needed and the Codex process is too time-consuming.

  • The North American Commission for Environmental Cooperation (NACEC) rejected a complaint brought against Mexico that claimed inadequate enforcement of Mexican law. The complaint concerned the Cytrar hazardous waste landfill near Hermosillo. NACEC said the law, which governs siting, did not apply to the facility. See http://www.cec.org/citizen/guides_registry/registryview.cfm?&varlan=english&submissionID=43

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red bar graphic CLIMATE CHANGE

  • Michael Zammit Cutajar of the United Nations said that progress during the Nov. 13-24 Kyoto Protocol meeting in The Hague is essential if the Protocol's targets of emission reductions are to be met. He put a "very high premium on success at The Hague" and noted that "a lot of hard work needs to be done before we get there." Meanwhile, the European Parliament adopted a resolution calling on the United States Congress "to drop. . . resistance to the principles agreed to and do justice to [its] responsibility to combat the greenhouse effect." European representatives were essentially instructed not to relent on any positions in the absence of an assurance that a compromise arrangement at The Hague will be approved by Congress.

  • Global warming is said to be affecting the ability of operators of the Panama Canal to obtain enough freshwater to float ships through the Canal.

  • A report released by Eurostat found that forest development and growth from 1990-99 partially offset the impact of carbon dioxide emissions, particularly in Sweden and Finland. In several countries, such as the U.K. and the Netherlands, forest absorption played a very minor role. 

  • A report issued by Greenpeace, Pacific in Peril, contends that several Pacific island nations--including American Samoa, Cook Islands, Fiji, and French Polynesia-- face significant economic decline due to the global warming and its adverse effects upon coral reefs. See http://www.greenpeace.org/~climate/science/reports/GR249-CoralBleaching3.pdf The Prime Minister of a small island nation claimed that developed countries had not done enough to advance the objectives of the Kyoto Protocol. Panelists at the Ninth International Coral Reef Symposium said that reductions in greenhouse gases are necessary to prevent further damage. 

red bar graphic EUROPE

  • Hungary announced it will sue Aurul, a Romania-based gold mining concern, for environmental and other damages caused by the cyanide spill into the Somes, Tisza and Danube rivers. See http://www.centraleurope.com/news.php3?id=214704

  • The Italian tanker Ievoli Sun, with a cargo of 6,000 tons of styrene and other chemicals, sank off of France's Atlantic coast. The chemicals have begun to leak from the vessel. 

  • A proposal to reduce value-added taxes on gasoline was rejected by the European Union. 

  • Denmark is considering draft legislation that would impose a hefty tax on hydrofluorocarbon (HFC) use and on other chemicals linked with global warming. The intent of sponsors is to impose a tax sufficiently high that it acts as a ban on manufacture or sale. 

  • Germany's Environment Ministry, in a compromise agreement, said it would amend the deposit and collection system for beverage containers to include a refund of around $0.20 U.S. for cans and bottles, beginning in 2002.