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Weekly Update Volume 37, Issue 28

10/01/2007

LITIGATION

NEPA, NATIONAL FOREST MANAGEMENT ACT:

The Ninth Circuit held that the U.S. Forest Service violated NEPA and the National Forest Management Act (NFMA) in approving the proposed expansion of a ski area in the Rogue River and Klamath National Forests. The Forest Service failed to properly evaluate the impact of the proposed expansion on the Pacific fisher, a sensitive species, in violation of NEPA and the NFMA. The agency's conclusion that the expansion would not negatively impact the fisher was based on an analysis of habitat in the proximity of the project area rather than on documented local and total fisher populations. It also failed to discuss in detail the project's impact upon the fisher as part of the cumulative impact analysis under NEPA. In addition, the agency failed to appropriately designate riparian reserves and restricted watershed terrain as required by Rogue River National Forest Land and Resource Management Plan and the Northwest Forest Plan. On remand, the lower court must enjoin the expansion project until the Forest Service has corrected these violations. Oregon Natural Resources Council Fund v. Goodman, No. 07-35110, 37 ELR 20247 (9th Cir. Sept. 24, 2007) (24 pp.).

ESA, DISTINCT POPULATION SEGMENTS:

A district court dismissed an environmental group's claim against the FWS for denying the group's listing petition seeking protection of the interior mountain quail as endangered or threatened under the ESA. The group argued that the distinct population segment (DPS) of the quail should qualify for ESA protection due to its declining population and habitat in the Interior Columbia Basin and Great Basin region of the Interior West. The FWS properly considered all of the relevant factors and articulated a rational connection between the facts found and the ultimate conclusion made in this case. The petition failed to show sufficient information or evidence of discreteness. In concluding that the quail has both disjunct populations but also populations that intermix over the boundaries proposed in the petition, the FWS did not improperly require absolute separation. The FWS' decision turned not on whether some intermixing is possible but, instead, on the fact that the proposed DPS boundaries delineated in the petition contain "a blend of both disjunct populations and continuous populations that do not meet the discreteness standard." Further, the petition failed to demonstrate that the interior mountain quail is a distinct species based on other DPS discreteness factors. Western Watersheds Project v. Hall, No. CV 06-0073-S-EJL, 37 ELR 20251 (D. Idaho Sept. 24, 2007) (6 pp.).

USTs, PENALTIES:

A Michigan appellate court upheld a lower court's imposition of over $2.5 million in penalties against the owners of a gas station for failing to comply with certain orders and statutory requirements in remediation contamination due to leaking USTs at the site. The trial court assessed $1,090,000 in penalties against the defendants for their failure to submit a statutorily complete federal assessment report detailing their progress in cleaning up the site, and it imposed additional penalties of $1,418,900 based on the seriousness of the violation and the defendants' noncompliance. The trial court had the authority under state law to impose the penalties, there was sufficient evidence of defendant's violations, and the trial court considered the appropriate factors when it imposed the penalties. State v. Bulk Petroleum Corp., No. 264207, 37 ELR 20250 (Mich. Ct. App. Sept. 18, 2007) (5 pp.).

CALIFORNIA SAFE DRINKING WATER ACT, WATER MONITORING REPORTS:

A California appellate court held that provisions of the California Safe Drinking Water Act impose upon a county a mandatory duty under Cal. Gov. Code §815.6 to review and respond to water quality monitoring reports submitted by water systems for which the county is responsible. The case involves a suit brought by the former residents of a mobile home park alleging that the park's water was contaminated with dangerously high levels of naturally occurring fluoride. Because the residents' complaint sufficiently alleged the elements necessary for liability under §815.6, and because no statutory immunity protects the county from liability for a breach of that duty, a lower court decision sustaining the county's demurrer to the residents' complaint was reversed. Guzman v. County of Monterey, No. H030647, 37 ELR 20249 (Cal. App. 6th Dist. Sept. 25, 2007) (16 pp.).

CALIFORNIA ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY ACT, WATER:

A California appellate court upheld the water services portion of a county's environmental impact report (EIR) for a residential and commercial development project north of Los Angeles. In a prior case, the court remanded the EIR because it relied on water entitlements instead of actual water in analyzing water availability. The county revised its analysis and recertified the EIR. An environmental group now challenges the adequacy of the EIR's water supply analysis as it relates to a water transfer. But because the EIR meets all four principles articulated by the California Supreme Court in analyzing future water supplies under CEQA, the group's claim fails. The EIR does not ignore or assume a solution to the problem of supplying water to the project, the water supply analysis is not limited to the first stage or the first few years of the project, the future water supplies identified and analyzed bear a likelihood of actually proving available, and the EIR discusses possible replacement sources or alternatives to use of the anticipated water. The court also rejected the group's claim that the EIR failed to address the lack of funding to remediate perchlorate contamination of local water wells. There is nothing to suggest that the mitigation measures will not be implemented or that the EIR was required to discuss funding for mitigation measures. Santa Clarita Organization for Planning the Environment v. County of Los Angeles, No. B189116, 37 ELR 20248 (Cal. App. 2d Dist. Sept. 25, 2007) (18 pp.).

CALIFORNIA ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY ACT, MITIGATION:

A California appellate court reversed a lower court decision denying residents' petitions to compel a city to enforce mitigation measures imposed under the California Environmental Quality Act in connection with the redevelopment of an apartment complex. The California Ellis Act, concerning rent control, does not preempt enforcement of the CEQA mitigation measures. By failing to monitor whether the apartment complex owner was complying with the mitigation measures, the city failed to enforce the mitigation conditions placed on the project in violation of CEQA. Similarly, the lower court erred in denying the residents' petitions to enjoin evictions at the apartment complex. On remand, the lower court must enter judgment against the city, compelling it to enforce the mitigation provisions. In addition, the lower court must enjoin the owner from evicting any of its current remaining tenants unless and until the mitigation conditions are complied with or amended in compliance with applicable law. Lincoln Place Tenants Ass'n v. City of Los Angeles, No. B193235, 37 ELR 20246 (Cal. App. 2d Dist. Sept. 19, 2007) (29 pp.).

CAA, OIL DRILLING:

The EPA Environmental Appeals Board remanded two outer continental shelf air regulation minor source permits issued to an oil company to mobilize, operate, and demobilize two drilling vessels in the Beaufort Sea off the North Scope of Alaska for the purpose of oil exploration. The Board remanded the permits on the sole issue of the "stationary source" EPA identified for purposes of determining whether PSD permits would be required for the company's proposed activities on the outer continental shelf. On remand, EPA must provide an explanation of its rationale, supported by record evidence, for establishing a 500-meter perimeter as defining the stationary source. But the Board denied review on all other issues raised in the environmental groups' petition. In re Shell Offshore, Inc., OCS Appeal Nos. 07-01 & 07-02, 37 ELR 41313 (EPA EAB Sept. 14, 2007) (71 pp.).

CWA, NPDES PERMIT:

The EPA Environmental Appeals Board denied a petition seeking review of an NPDES permit that allows the petitioner to continue operating its power plant in Somerset, Massachusetts, on the shores of Mount Hope Bay. The permit imposes certain limitations under CWA §§316(a) and (b) that will effectively require all four of the petitioner's electric generating units to be retrofitted from open-cycle cooling systems to closed-cycle cooling systems at considerable cost. EPA's selection of five days as the maximum temperature exceedance frequency was rational in light of all the information in the record. In addition, EPA's consideration of the noise impacts of closed-cycle cooling was reasonable. In re Dominion Energy Brayton Point, LLC, NPDES Appeal No. 07-01, 37 ELR 41314 (EPA EAB Sept. 27, 2007) (57 pp.).

RCRA, PENALTIES:

An EPA administrative law judge (ALJ) ordered the owner of two gasoline station facilities and UST systems to comply with all the regulatory requirements set forth in the compliance order contained in EPA's complaint. In its complaint, EPA proposed a $193,538 civil administrative penalty be assessed against the owner for failing to provide certain USTs with corrosion protection, failing to provide release detection for USTs, and failing to provide certain USTs with a line leak detector and annual line tightness testing or monthly monitoring. Because the respondent chose not to appear at the scheduled hearing and did not show good cause for doing so, the ALJ found the owner to be in default, assessed the $193,538 civil penalty, and ordered it to comply with all the regulatory requirements set forth in the compliance order. In re Century Oil Acquisition Corp., RCRA No. 03-2006-0088, 37 ELR 47888 (EPA ALJ Sept. 17, 2007) (31 pp.).

Copyright© 2007, Environmental Law Institute, Washington, D.C. All rights reserved.

THE FEDERAL AGENCIES

Note: Citations below are to the Federal Register (FR).

AIR:

  • EPA seeks comment as to the legality of standards for hazardous waste combusters it promulgated on October 12, 2005 (71 FR 14665, 52564) so that it can identify which ones need to be reexamined through a subsequent rulemaking. 72 FR 54875 (9/27/07).
  • SIP Approvals: Arkansas (clean air interstate rule (CAIR) nitrogen oxides (NOx) ozone season trading program) 72 FR 54556 (9/26/07). Louisiana (CAIR NOx trading programs) 72 FR 55064 (9/28/07). Ohio (emission statement reporting regulation amendment) 72 FR 54844 (9/27/07). Missouri (Construction Permits By Rule amendment) 72 FR 54562 (9/26/07).
  • SIP Proposals: Arkansas (CAIR NOx ozone season trading program; see above for direct final rule) 72 FR 54623 (9/26/07). Missouri (Construction Permits by Rule amendment; see above for direct final rule) 72 FR 54624 (9/26/07); (clean air mercury rule) 72 FR 54872 (9/27/07). Ohio (emission statement reporting regulation amendment; see above for direct final rule) 72 FR 54872 (9/27/07). Pennsylvania (eight-hour ozone NAAQS redesignation request, maintenance plan, 2002 base-year inventory, and motor vehicle emission budgets for the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre area) 72 FR 54390 (9/25/07). Virginia (CAIR budget trading programs) 72 FR 54385 (9/25/07).

ENERGY:

  • The U.S. Forest Service proposed amendments to its internal agency directives for special use authorizations and wildlife monitoring that would provide direction and guidance specific to wind energy development on National Forest System lands. 72 FR 54233 (9/24/07).

GENERAL:

  • EPA provided information and guidelines on how it will award and administer the United States-Mexico Border Program and the Alaska Rural and Native Villages Program in accordance with the Revised Continuing Appropriations Resolution, 2007 (Pub. L. 110-5). 72 FR 55058 (9/28/07).

WATER:

  • EPA announced that on September 25, 2007, Region 8 will be conducting a review of the variances and exemptions issued by the state of Colorado to public water systems under its jurisdiction. 72 FR 54445 (9/25/07).

WILDLIFE:

  • FWS designated critical habitat in Riverside County, California, for the Vail Lake ceanothus and in San Diego County, California, for the Mexican flannelbush. 72 FR 54983 (9/27/07).
  • FWS reconsidered whether designating critical habitat for the plant Trichostema austromontanum ssp. compactum is prudent and determined that designation of critical habitat for this taxon continues to be not prudent. 72 FR 54377 (9/25/07).
  • FWS announced the availability of the draft revised comprehensive conservation plan and EA and draft revised public use management plan and EA for the Togiak National Wildlife Refuge in Dillingham, Alaska. 72 FR 54921 (9/27/07).
  • FWS announced the availability of the final comprehensive conservation plan and FONSI for the Lacassine National Wildlife Refuge in Cameron and Evangeline Parishes, Louisiana. 72 FR 54673 (9/26/07).
  • FWS announced the availability of the draft economic analysis of the proposed revised critical habitat designation for the tidewater goby and an amended required determinations section of the proposal. 72 FR 54411 (9/25/07).
  • FWS announced the distribution and availability of replacement maps of eight John H. Chafee Coastal Barrier Resources System units in Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and Texas, as directed by Congress. 72 FR 54278 (9/24/07).
  • FWS announced the availability of the recovery plan for the Pacific Coast population of the Western Snowy Plover. 72 FR 54279 (9/24/07).

DOJ NOTICES OF SETTLEMENT:

  • In re Asarco LLC., No. 05-21207 (Bankr. S.D. Tex. Sept. 12, 2007). A settling CERCLA defendant must complete residential soil cleanups, not to exceed an estimated cost of $4,770,000, at the El Paso County Metals Survey Superfund site in El Paso, Texas. 72 FR 54927 (9/27/07).
  • United States v. B & D Electric Co., Inc., No. 05-00063 (E.D. Mo. Sept. 17, 2007). A settling CERCLA defendant must make a cash payment of $10,500 to resolve claims of releasing hazardous substances at the Missouri Electric Works Superfund site in Cape Girardeau, Missouri. 72 FR 54928 (9/27/07).
  • United States v. B & D Electric Co., Inc., No. 05-00063 (E.D. Mo. Sept. 17, 2007). Settling CERCLA defendants must collectively pay $190,000 to resolve claims of releasing hazardous substances at the Missouri Electric Works Superfund site in Cape Girardeau, Missouri. 72 FR 54928 (9/27/07).
  • United States v. Darcars of New Carrollton, Inc., No. 2:07-cv-1235 (W.D. Pa. Sept. 13, 2007). A settling CERCLA defendant must pay $2,720.83 to resolve its liability of releases or threatened releases of hazardous substances at or from the Breslube Penn Superfund site in Moon Township, Pennsylvania. 72 FR 54929 (9/27/07).
  • United States v. NextiraOne, LLC, No. 07-20654 (S.D. Fla. Sept. 14, 2007). Settling CERCLA defendants must pay $325,000.00 in reimbursement costs to the Hazardous Substances Superfund for the release and/or threatened release of hazardous substances at and from the Anaconda Aluminum Co./Milgo Electronics Corp. NPL Superfund site in Miami, Florida. 72 FR 54929 (9/27/07).

GUIDANCE DOCUMENTS:

  • EPA seeks comment on the draft document titled, Integrated Science Assessment for Sulfur Oxides Health Criteria; First External Review Draft. 72 FR 55207 (9/28/07).
  • EPA seeks comment on the external review draft of the Framework for Determining a Mutagenic Mode of Action for Carcinogenicity: Using EPA's 2005 Cancer Guidelines and Supplemental Guidance for Assessing Susceptibility From Early-Life Exposure to Carcinogens72 FR 54910 (9/27/07).

Copyright© 2007, Environmental Law Institute, Washington, D.C. All rights reserved.

THE CONGRESS

Citations below are to the Congressional Record (Cong. Rec.).

CHAMBER ACTION:

  • H.R. 3121 (Flood Insurance Reform and Modernization Act of 2007), which would restore the financial solvency of the national flood insurance program and provide for such program to make available multiperil coverage for damage resulting from windstorms and floods, was passed by the House. 153 Cong. Rec. H10956-94 (daily ed. Sept. 27, 2007).

COMMITTEE ACTION:

  • S.J. Res. 13 (Environmental Emergency Assistance) was reported by the Committee on the Judiciary. 153 Cong. Rec. S12285 (daily ed. Sept. 27, 2007). The bill would grant the consent of Congress through a joint resolution to the International Emergency Management Assistance Memorandum of Understanding.
  • H.R. 79 (Hunters for the Hungry) was reported by the Committee on Agriculture. H. Rep. No. 110-343, 153 Cong. Rec. H10754-55 (daily ed. Sept. 24, 2007). The bill would recognize the establishment of Hunters for the Hungry programs across the United States and the contributions of those programs' efforts to decrease hunger and help feed those in need.
  • H. Res. 683 (Flood and Windstorm Insurance) was reported by the Committee on Rules. Rep. No. 110-351, 153 Cong. Rec. H10939 (daily ed. Sept. 25, 2007). The bill would restore the financial solvency of the national flood insurance program and provide for such program to make available multiperil coverage for damage resulting from windstorms and floods, and for other purposes.
  • H. Con. Res. 25 (Renewable Resources) was reported by the Committee on Agriculture. H. Rep. No. 110-344, 153 Cong. Rec. H10754-55 (daily ed. Sept. 24, 2007). The bill would express that it is the goal of the United States that, not later than January 1, 2025, the agricultural, forestry, and working land of the United States should provide from renewable resources not less than 25 percent of the total energy consumed in the United States and continue to produce safe, abundant, and affordable food, feed, and fiber.

BILLS INTRODUCED:

  • S. 2093 (Leahy, D-Vt.) (Wild and Scenic Rivers Act) would amend the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act to designate a segment of the Missisquoi and Trout Rivers in the state of Vermont for study for potential addition to the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System. 153 Cong. Rec. S12054 (daily ed. Sept. 25, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.
  • S. 2098 (Dorgan, D-N.D.)(heritage area) would establish the Northern Plains Heritage Area in the state of North Dakota. 153 Cong. Rec. S12054 (daily ed. Sept. 26, 2007). The bill was referred the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.
  • S. 2109 (Boxer, D-Cal.) (wild areas) would designate certain federal lands in Riverside County, California, as wilderness, certain river segments in Riverside County as a wild, scenic, or recreational river, and adjust the boundary of the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument. 153 Cong. Rec. S12287 (daily ed. Sept. 27, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources
  • H.R. 3639 (Farr, D-Cal.) (sea otters) would establish a program of research and other activities to provide for the recovery of the southern sea otter. 153 Cong. Rec. H10755 (daily ed. Sept. 24, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources
  • H.R. 3643 (Pelosi, D-Cal.) (environmental public health) would amend the Public Health Service Act to establish a Coordinated Environmental Public Health Network. 153 Cong. Rec. H10755 (daily ed. Sept. 24, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce.
  • H.R. 3644 (Shays, R-Conn.) (natural disasters) would establish a nonpartisan Commission on Natural Catastrophe Risk Management and Insurance. 153 Cong. Rec. H10755 (daily ed. Sept. 24, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Financial Services.
  • H.R. 3651 (Bishop, R-Utah) (land conveyance) would require the conveyance of certain public land within the boundaries of Camp Williams, Utah, to support the training and readiness of the Utah National Guard. 153 Cong. Rec. H10900 (daily ed. Sept. 25, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 3663 (Miller, D-Cal) (wildlife) would amend the Fish and Wildlife Act of 1956 to establish additional prohibitions on shooting wildlife from aircraft. 153 Cong. Rec. H10900 (daily ed. Sept. 25, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 3669 (Faleomavaega, D-Am. Sam.) (fisheries) would amend title 46, U.S. Code, to promote the U.S. distant water tuna fleet. 153 Cong. Rec. H10939 (daily ed. Sept. 26, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.
  • H.R. 3667 (Welch, D-Vt.) (Wild and Scenic Rivers Act) would amend the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act to designate a segment of the Missisquoi and Trout Rivers in the state of Vermont for study for potential addition to the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System. 153 Cong. Rec. H10900 (daily ed. Sept. 25, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 3682(Bono, R-Cal.) (wild areas) would designate certain federal lands in Riverside County, California, as wilderness, certain river segments in Riverside County as a wild, scenic, or recreational river, to adjust the boundary of the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument, and for other purposes. 153 Cong. Rec. H11026 (daily ed. Sept. 27, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 3702 (Rehberga, R-Mont.)(land conveyance) would direct the Secretary of Agriculture to convey certain land in the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest, Montana, to Jefferson County, Montana, for use as a cemetery. 153 Cong. Rec. H11026 (daily ed. Sept. 27, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 3704 (Stupak, D-Mich.) (historical park) would decrease the matching funds requirement and authorize additional appropriations for Keweenaw National Historical Park in the state of Michigan. 153 Cong. Rec. H11026 (daily ed. Sept. 27, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.

Copyright© 2007, Environmental Law Institute, Washington, D.C. All rights reserved.

IN THE STATES

Note: The entries below cover state developments since the last issue of Update. The entries are arranged by state, and within each section, entries are further subdivided by subject matter area. For a cumulative listing of materials reported in 2007, visit our list of Cumulative State Developments Arranged by State, or our list of Cumulative State Developments Arranged by Subject Matter. For state material reported prior to 2007, visit the ELR Archives.

The states below have updates this week:

Alabama Delaware Massachusetts New York California Indiana Minnesota Pennsylvania Colorado Maine Nevada  

ALABAMA

Air:

  • The Department of Environmental Management will conduct a public hearing to consider proposed revisions to Division 3 of the ADEM Administrative Code, which concerns air quality.  Also to be considered is a letter clarifying several CAA §10 SIP issues. The hearing will be held October 10, 2007. Comments are due October 12, 2007. See http://www.adem.state.al.us//PublicNotice/Aug/8Div3.htm

Water:

  • The Department of Environmental Management will conduct a public hearing to consider numerous amendments to water regulations. These changes are being proposed to update the regulations to meet federal requirements. The hearing will be held November 2, 2007. Comments are due November 2, 2007. See http://www.adem.state.al.us//PublicNotice/Sept/Div7.htm

General:

  • The Department of Environmental Management will hold a public hearing concerning amendments to Chapter 335-1-1 that would add, modify, and delete departmental forms and amendments to Chapter 335-1-6 that would increase permit fees. The hearing will be held November 2, 2007. Comments are due November 2, 2007. See http://www.adem.state.al.us//PublicNotice/Sept/Div1.htm

CALIFORNIA

Water:

COLORADO

Air:

  • The Air Quality Control Commission will hold a public hearing to consider a proposal to adopt a regional haze element to the Colorado SIP. The hearing will also consider proposed revisions to Regulation Number 3 to establish an effective date for the implementation of the best available retrofit technology requirements of the federal regional haze rule that are a part of the SIP revision. The hearing will be held November 15 and 16, 2007. Comments are due November 1, 2007. See http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/op/aqcc/aqccdown/NoticeReg3November.pdf

DELAWARE

Hazardous & Solid Wastes:

  • The Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) will hold a public hearing to consider adoption of proposed amendments to the Delaware Regulations Governing Hazardous Waste. The state of Delaware is authorized by U.S. EPA to administer its own hazardous waste management program. Many of the changes DNREC is proposing to make are already in effect at the federal level. Additionally, the state is making miscellaneous changes to the existing regulations for the purpose of correcting errors and to add consistency or clarification to the existing regulations. The hearing will be held October 22, 2007. See http://www.dnrec.state.de.us/DNREC2000/Admin/Press/PublicNotices/PNDetail.asp?NOVID=2558
  • The Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control will hold a public hearing to consider adoption of proposed amendments to the Delaware Regulations Governing Solid Waste. The hearing will be held October 22, 2007. See http://www.dnrec.state.de.us/DNREC2000/Admin/Press/PublicNotices/PNDetail.asp?NOVID=2559

INDIANA

Air:

  • The Air Pollution Control Board will hold a public hearing on amendments concerning particulate matter emission limits set forth at 326 IAC 6.5 and 326 IAC 6.8. The hearing will be held November 7, 2007. See http://www.in.gov/legislative/iac/20070926-IR-326040279PHA.xml.pdf
  • The Air Pollution Control Board is soliciting public comment on revisions to air quality rules 326 IAC 6.5 and 326 IAC 6.8 to update source information. The proposed revisions are substantially different than the draft revisions. Comments are due October 17, 2007. See http://www.in.gov/legislative/iac/20070926-IR-326040279PRA.xml.pdf
  • The Air Pollution Control Board will hold a public hearing on amendments concerning the motor vehicle inspection and maintenance program in Lake County and Porter County at 326 IAC 13-1.1. The hearing will be held November 7, 2007. See http://www.in.gov/legislative/iac/20070926-IR-326060284PHA.xml.pdf
  • The Air Pollution Control Board is soliciting public comment on proposed amendments to 326 IAC 13-1.1-1, 326 IAC 13-1.1-2, 326 IAC 13-1.1-5, 326 IAC 13-1.1-7 through 326 IAC 13-1.1- 10, 326 IAC 13-1.1-16, and 326 IAC 13-1.1-17.1 concerning the motor vehicle inspection and maintenance program in Lake County and Porter County. Comments are due October 17, 2007. See http://www.in.gov/legislative/iac/20070926-IR-326060284PRA.xml.pdf
  • The Indiana Department of Environmental Management (IDEM) has developed draft rule language for amendments to 326 IAC 2 concerning review and action on renewals to Minor Source Operating Permits. IDEM will not be pursuing revisions to minor permit modifications to Part 70 operating permits. Comments are due October 26, 2007. See http://www.in.gov/legislative/iac/20070926-IR-326070202SNA.xml.pdf

Fisheries:

  • The Natural Resource Commission has adopted an emergency rule that temporarily amends 312 IAC 9, governing the taking and possession of paddlefish and prohibiting the taking of fish by snagging. The emergency rule modifies the definition of rough fish, provides a standard for the measurement of paddlefish, prohibits the taking of paddlefish from public waters under a regular sport fishing license, and provides season and size limits for the commercial fishing of paddlefish on the Ohio River. This rule became effective September 13, 2007. See http://www.in.gov/legislative/iac/20070926-IR-312070589ERA.xml.pdf

Water:

MAINE

Air:

  • The Board of Environmental Protection adopted Chapter 139, Transportation Conformity. The rule establishes criteria and procedures for consultation and enforcement and enforceability requirements for written commitments for control measures. See http://www.maine.gov/sos/cec/rules/notices/2007/092607.htm

Hazardous & Solid Wastes:

  • The Board of Environmental Protection amended Chapter 415, Reasonable Costs for Handling and Recycling of Electronic Wastes, to authorize the department to add consolidators to the approval list before the annual review process undertaken in the last quarter of each year. See http://www.maine.gov/sos/cec/rules/notices/2007/092607.htm

MASSACHUSETTS

Water:

  • The Department of Environmental Protection will hold a public meeting seeking comment on a draft document identifying the need to limit and reduce nitrogen in the coastal waters of Nantucket and Polpis Harbors on the Island of Nantucket. The hearing will be held October 9, 2007. Comments are due November 2, 2007. See http://www.mass.gov/dep/public/hearings/nantuck.htm

MINNESOTA

Toxic Substances:

NEVADA

Hazardous & Solid Wastes:

NEW YORK

Air:

  • The Department of Environmental Conservation will hold public hearings on proposed amendments of Parts 200, 201, and 231 of Title 6 NYCRR, concerning requirements for proposed new major facilities and major modifications to existing facilities located in attainment and nonattainment areas of the state. The amendments are intended to comply with U.S. EPA's 2002 new source review rule and to correct deficiencies in the state's current nonattainment new source review regulation. The hearings will be held November 13, 15, and 16, 2007. Comments are due November 21, 2007. See http://www.dos.state.ny.us/info/register/2007/sep26/pdfs/rules.pdf (pp. 8-16)

PENNSYLVANIA

Water:

  • The Environmental Quality Board is soliciting public comment on proposed amendments to Chapter 109, relating to safe drinking water. The proposed rulemaking would strengthen the public notice requirements for imminent threat violations and situations (also known as Tier 1), enhance the planning requirements of both the Operation and Maintenance Plan and the Emergency Response Plan sections that relate to public notification, and amend the delivery requirements for community water systems as appropriate to the type and size of the water system. The proposal would also provide a few more examples of situations that need to be reported to the Department of Environmental Protection within one hour of discovery. Comments are due November 21, 2007. See http://www.pabulletin.com/secure/data/vol37/37-38/1754.html

Copyright© 2007, Environmental Law Institute, Washington, D.C. All rights reserved.

INTERNATIONAL

DUTCH BANK BUYS BRAZILIAN CARBON CREDITS AT PUBLIC AUCTION

Last week, a Dutch banking firm became the first entity to bid on carbon credits in a public auction. Through the Brazilian Mercantile & Futures Exchange, Fortis Bank paid the government of São Paulo $13 million euros for credits for 800,000 metric tons of carbon emissions. The credits come from a project contracted by the city to convert methane captured at a massive solid waste site into electricity. The final price was higher than expected, which enthused environmental economists and city officials who expect to hold similar auctions in the future. See http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7015171.stm

AFRICAN NATIONS TO DEVELOP INTERNATIONAL FISHERIES PLAN FOR LAKE VICTORIA

A Ugandan newspaper reported that the East African Community council of ministers will develop a joint fisheries management plan for Lake Victoria. Fish scarcity has caused concern in Uganda and Kenya, two of the nations bordering the water body, which is Africa’s largest lake. In addition, Kenya's East African affairs minister, John Koech, explained that a lack of clarity concerning territorial boundaries and discrepancies between national policies have led to disputes and arbitrary arrests of fishermen. The policy will be ratified by country officials at the next summit for East African Community heads of state. See http://allafrica.com/stories/200709270045.html

TWO SUSPECTS ARRESTED IN GORILLA TRAFFICKING RING

Park rangers in the Democratic Republic of Congo arrested two men believed to be associated with a gorilla trafficking ring. The two individuals are suspected of trying to traffic two gorillas for $8,000; the would-be destination of the gorillas is unclear. The arrests come after the death of at least nine mountain gorillas in the country’s oldest national park during the past year. The nation has seen intense conflict over natural resources in the course of 10 years of civil war, which also greatly comprised the ability of the nation to monitor gorilla trafficking. Many experts are concerned that the gorilla trade may be resurfacing after declining in recent years. See http://www.alertnet.org/thenews/newsdesk/L2530693.htm

Copyright© 2007, Environmental Law Institute, Washington, D.C. All rights reserved.

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April King, Editorial Associate
Amanda Martin, Contributing Editor
Jesse Oppenheimer, Contributing Editor