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Weekly Update Volume 37, Issue 6

02/26/2007

LITIGATION

CERCLA, CONTRIBUTION, PRPs:

The Sixth Circuit upheld a lower court decision denying a company's motion to set aside a judgment ordering it to pay contribution to a PRP for cleanup costs incurred at a chemical-processing plant in Ohio. The company filed its motion to set aside the judgment in light of the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Cooper Industries v. Aviall Services, Inc., 543 U.S. 157, 34 ELR 20154 (2005), which holds that CERCLA §113(f)(1) authorizes contribution actions only when the claimant had been subject to a "civil action" under §§106 or 107. Because the company failed to argue the civil action issue below, it waived consideration of it on appeal. The intervening change-in-law exception to the waiver rule does not apply because there was no controlling authority on the issue prior to the Aviall decision and no "other special circumstance" exists. And by no means does Aviall establish that the company would prevail because the Supreme Court did not address whether a bilateral administrative action, as was the case here, could qualify as a civil action. The company also filed a motion to stay execution of the judgment, but because the judgment had already been executed, the lower court's denial of the motion was affirmed as moot. GenCorp, Inc. v. Olin Corp., No. 05-4439, 37 ELR 20042 (6th Cir. Feb. 12, 2007) (7 pp.).

CERCLA, RCRA, REMOVAL ACTIONS:

The First Circuit held that the owners and operators of two fiberglass manufacturing facilities in Puerto Rico are jointly and severally liable under CERCLA for the removal costs EPA incurred at the sites. The defendants failed to point to any clear or obvious error on the part of the lower court in finding that EPA's removal action was consistent with the NCP. Nor did a final pollution report refute the lower court's finding that there had been significant levels of hazardous substances at the site or undermine the court's related decision that EPA was not arbitrary or capricious in undertaking a CERCLA removal action at the site. In addition, the lower court did not err in imposing civil penalties for the defendants' failure to respond in writing to EPA's request for information under RCRA. The defendants failed to cite any case authority for the proposition that an intervening EPA inspection relieves a party of the responsibility to respond in writing to a RCRA information request. United States v. JG-24, Inc., No. 04-2577, 37 ELR 20049 (1st Cir. Feb. 16, 2007) (15 pp.).

MINING, PARTICULATE MATTER:

The D.C. Circuit denied mining industry groups' and mine operators' petitions for review of three Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) rules regulating diesel particulate matter (DPM) in underground mines. The court rejected the petitioners' claim that the MSHA did not have sufficient evidence that DPM presents a risk to miners' health. Also without merit were the petitioners' claims that the MSHA unreasonably chose to regulate other substances as surrogates for DPM; that DPM exposure limits in the new rules cannot feasibly be achieved by mine operators, that the MSHA unlawfully granted medical evaluation and transfer rights to workers who are required to wear respirators, and that the MSHA's final implementation timetable was not a logical outgrowth of the proposed rules. Kennecott Greens Creek Mining Co. v. Mine Safety & Health Administration, No. 01-1046, 37 ELR 20043 (D.C. Cir. Feb. 9, 2007) (25 pp.).

NEPA, NATIONAL FOREST MANAGEMENT ACT:

The Ninth Circuit affirmed in part and reversed in part a lower court decision denying environmental groups' motion to preliminarily enjoin a U.S. Forest Service post-fire logging sale in the Umatilla National Forest. Although the groups may ultimately succeed on the merits of their NEPA claim, the district court did not abuse its discretion in denying their motion for injunctive relief when it concluded that the Forest Service adequately analyzed and disclosed the effects of logging in two small uninventoried roadless areas of the forest. The court, however, applied an erroneous legal standard in denying the preliminary injunction on claims that the Forest Service violated the National Forest Management Act (NFMA). The term "live trees" in the applicable forest plan includes all trees that are not dead, including those trees that will likely die within a year. Because the sale included dying trees and not just dead trees, the groups established a very strong likelihood of success on the merits of their NFMA claim. And because the resulting injury--logging of old-growth trees--is a permanent environmental injury, the court remanded the case with instructions to grant immediately a preliminary injunction to prohibit the logging of any trees of the requisite size that are not yet dead. Lands Council v. Martin, No. 06-35781, 37 ELR 20045 (9th Cir. Feb. 13, 2007) (16 pp.).

ESA, INCIDENTAL TAKE STATEMENTS, NORTHERN SPOTTED OWL:

The Ninth Circuit held that an FWS incidental take statement authorizing the taking of all northern spotted owls associated with certain proposed timber harvests in the Pacific northwest is invalid. As a result of a prior court opinion, the FWS voluntarily reinitiated consultation with two federal agencies regarding the impact of a portion of the proposed timber harvests on the endangered northern spotted owl. The FWS then withdrew its biological opinion regarding that portion, but it did not withdraw the accompanying incidental take statement. By withdrawing a portion of the biological opinion, the incidental take statement was left without an underlying factual predicate. In addition, the incidental take statement presents a nonnumerical measure of take without explaining why no number was provided, and it sets a measure of take that does not allow for reinitiation of consultation. On remand, the district court must grant summary judgment in favor of plaintiffs regarding the invalidity of the incidental take statement. Oregon Natural Resources Council v. Allen, No. 05-35830, 37 ELR 20048 (9th Cir. Feb. 16, 2007) (19 pp.).

WHISTLEBLOWER PROTECTION, HOSTILE WORK ENVIRONMENT:

The Tenth Circuit upheld a U.S. Department of Labor administrative review board decision dismissing a civilian chemist's complaint that his former employer--the U.S. Army--violated the employee protection provisions of several environmental statutes and retaliated against him by creating a hostile work environment that resulted in the chemist's resignation. The chemist alleged that after he reported environmental and safety concerns to the Army and outside agencies, the Army retaliated against him by reinvestigating and recommending revocation of his security clearance, requiring him to undergo unnecessary mental health and fitness-for-duty exams, subjecting him to hostile comments and policies in the workplace, unfairly lowering his performance evaluations and threatening disciplinary action against him, and interfering with his work in an effort to stymie completion of his assignments. However, the board's conclusion that there was no retaliatory motive on the part of the Army is supported by direct and circumstantial evidence. Nor did the board misconstrue the chemists' complaint or the law of constructive discharge. In addition, the board correctly ruled that it lacked the authority to review the Army's security clearance decisions. Hall v. United States Department of Labor, No. 05-9512, 37 ELR 20046 (10th Cir. Feb. 13, 2007) (27 pp.).

PATENT LAW, REMEDIATION:

The Federal Circuit upheld a lower court decision dismissing an environmental service company's patent infringement suit against a hazardous waste remediation contractor. The contractor was hired by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to clean up a lead-contaminated parcel of land near Colonie, New York. The company, which holds several U.S. patents regarding hazardous waste remediation, claimed that the contractor's methods for treating hazardous waste at the site infringed one of these patents. But because the contractor's use of the method was both "for the Government" and "with the authorization and consent of the Government," it is entitled to government contractor immunity under 28 U.S.C. §1498(a). Sevenson Environmental Services, Inc. v. Shaw Environmental, Inc., Nos. 2006-1391, -1408, 37 ELR 20050 (Fed. Cir. Feb. 21, 2007) (11 pp.).

PLANT PROTECTION ACT, NEPA, GENETIC ENGINEERING:

A district court held that the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) arbitrarily and capriciously denied petitions to list certain genetically engineered varieties of grasses as noxious weeds under the Plant Protection Act. APHIS' insistence that international obligations require that plants be new to or not widely prevalent in the United States to be eligible for listing as noxious weeds was arbitrary and capricious and contrary to law. On remand, however, APHIS retains considerable discretion in its listing decision. In addition, APHIS violated NEPA when it permitted field tests to be conducted without preparing an EA or EIS under NEPA. Specifically, APHIS failed to adequately determine whether the field tests were categorically exempt from NEPA. The record contains substantial evidence that the field tests may have had the potential to affect significantly the quality of the human environment, and that the tests may have involved, at the least, novel modifications that raised new environmental issues. APHIS failed, however, to consider any of these possibilities. International Center for Technology Assessment v. Johanns, 03-cv-00020-HHK, 37 ELR 20044 (D.D.C. Feb. 5, 2007) (Kennedy, Jr., J.) (34 pp.).

NEPA, GENETIC ENGINEERING:

A district court held that the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) failed to take a hard look at its decision to deregulate alfalfa genetically engineered to resist the herbicide glyphosate--the active ingredient in "RoundUp." Substantial questions exist as to whether the deregulation of "RoundUp Ready alfalfa" without any geographic restrictions will lead to the transmission of the engineered gene to organic and conventional alfalfa, the possible extent of such transmission, and farmers' ability to protect their crops from acquiring the genetically engineered gene. Substantial questions also arise as to the extent to which RoundUp Ready alfalfa will contribute to the development of RoundUp-resistant weeds, especially when considered in conjunction with other genetically engineered RoundUp crops that are already or soon-to-be deregulated, and as to how farmers will address such weeds. Instead of addressing these issues, APHIS concluded that any environmental impact is insignificant because gene transmission is the problem of the organic and conventional farmers and weeds always develop resistance to herbicides. Because these reasons are not convincing and do not demonstrate that the agency took a hard look at the potential environmental impacts of its deregulation decision, APHIS must prepare an EIS. Geertson Seed Farms v. Johanns, No. 06-01075, 37 ELR 20047 (N.D. Cal. Feb. 13, 2007) (Breyer, J.) (20 pp.).

NATIVE AMERICANS, CALIFORNIA ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY ACT:

A California appellate court affirmed a lower court's denial of a petition for a writ of mandamus to reverse a public agency's sale of land to the Tuolumne Board of Me-Wuk Indians. The land contained a disused but historic railroad right-of-way. A community group argued that the transfer fell within the California Environmental Quality Act's (CEQA's) definition of a "project" and therefore required environmental review under the Act because it was reasonably foreseeable that the land would be developed and that the development would have an adverse impact on the historical resource. But the transfer was not a project requiring CEQA review because, although some development of the property surrounding the historical resource was reasonably foreseeable, review of conceivable impacts on the historical resource itself would have been premature in the absence of any concrete development proposals. Nor does CEQA compel the agency to force property owners to create or disclose development plans for the purpose of accelerating environmental review. Friends of the Sierra Railroad v. Tuolumne Park & Recreation District, No. F050117, 37 ELR 20041 (Cal. App. 5th Dist. Jan. 12, 2007) (26 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:

  • The FAA announced that it is proposing categories of actions involving agency approval and financial assistance for airport projects that would be presumed to conform to an applicable SIP pursuant to EPA's conformity rule; the proposal distinguishes various airport-related actions that are exempt under the rule from those that the FAA proposes to be presumed to conform. 72 FR 6641 (2/12/07).
  • SIP Approvals: Missouri (operating permits rule revisions) 72 FR 7829 (2/21/07). New York (motor vehicle enhanced inspection and maintenance program) 72 FR 7826 (2/21/07).
  • SIP Proposals: California (carbon monoxide (CO) NAAQS; CO maintenance plans; motor vehicle emission budgets; and motor vehicle inspection and maintenance) 72 FR 6986 (2/14/07). Missouri (operating permits rule revisions; see above for direct final rule) 72 FR 7842 (2/21/07). New Mexico (PSD and nonattainment new source review regulations) 72 FR 7361 (2/15/07).

HAZARDOUS & SOLID WASTE:

  • EPA entered into a settlement under CERCLA concerning the Starmet CMI Superfund Site in Barnwell, South Carolina, for reimbursement of past response costs. 72 FR 7983 (2/22/07).

HEALTH & SAFETY:

  • NRC announced the availability of a draft interim staff guidance document titled Preclosure Safety Analysis--Dose Performance Objectives and Radiation Protection Program. 72 FR 7778 (2/20/07).

NANOTECHNOLOGY:

  • EPA announced the availability of the final Nanotechnology White Paper; the White Paper provides a basic description of nanotechnology, why the Agency is interested in it, its potential environmental benefits, risk assessment issues specific to nanotechnology, and a discussion of responsible development of nanotechnology and the Agency's statutory mandates. 72 FR 7435 (2/15/07).

NUCLEAR REACTORS:

  • The NRC is seeking comment on its Proposed License Renewal Interim Staff Guidance LR-ISG-2006-02 on the acceptance review criteria for environmental reports provided by applicants for reactor license renewal. 72 FR 7694 (2/16/07).

WATER:

  • The Delaware River Basin Commission proposed to establish a Flexible Flow Management Program for the New York City Delaware Basin Reservoirs for a number of objectives, including, among others, water supply and drought mitigation, management of the reservoir tailwater fisheries and other habitat needs, and spill mitigation. 72 FR 6509 (2/12/07).

WILDLIFE:

  • FWS announced a 90-day finding on a petition to list the DeBeque milkvetch as threatened or endangered under the ESA; the agency found that listing the plant species is not warranted at this time. 72 FR 6998 (2/14/07).
  • FWS announced a 90-day finding on a petition to list the Jollyville Plateau salamander as endangered under the ESA; the agency found that listing may be warranted at this time and initiated a status review of the species. 72 FR 6699 (2/13/07).
  • FWS announced a 90-day finding on a petition to list the San Felipe gambusia as threatened or endangered under the ESA; the agency found that listing the species is not warranted at this time. 72 FR 6703 (2/13/07).
  • FWS announced a 90-day finding on a petition to reclassify the Utah prairie dog from threatened to endangered under the ESA; the agency determined that reclassification of the species is not warranted at this time. 72 FR 7843 (2/21/07).
  • NOAA announced that the state of Washington submitted a Habitat Restoration Program that would affect 10 evolutionarily significant units of threatened salmonids in the state. 72 FR 6532 (2/12/07).
  • NOAA-Fisheries issued an advance notice of proposed rulemaking on possible amendments to the regulatory requirements for sea turtle excluder devices; the objective of the proposed measures would be to effectively protect all life stages and sea turtle species in Atlantic trawl fisheries where they are vulnerable to incidental capture and mortality. 72 FR 7382 (2/15/07).
  • NOAA-Fisheries announced temporary restrictions that apply to lobster trap/pot and anchored gillnet fishermen in the southeast of Boston, Massachusetts; the purpose of the action is to provide protection to an aggregation of northern right whales. 72 FR 7931 (2/22/07).

DOJ NOTICES OF SETTLEMENT:

  • United States v. Royster-Clark, Inc., No. 1-07-CV-0089 (S.D. Ohio Feb. 5, 2007). Settling CAA defendants must pay a $750,000.00 civil penalty; must install a selective catalytic reduction device and achieve specified emission limits to control nitrogen oxides (NOx) emissions from the nitric acid plant at its facility in North Bend, Ohio; must install a continuous emissions monitoring system to measure NOx emissions at the facility's nitric acid plant; must apply for a permit to install from Ohio's permitting authorities incorporating various requirements of the consent decree; and must revise the facility's CAA Title V operating permit so that it complies with the decree. 72 FR 7459 (2/15/07).
  • United States v. American Cyanamid Co., Nos. 90- 0046-C, 91-0003-C (W.D. Va. Jan. 24, 2007). Settling CERCLA defendants must comply with certain land use restrictions, must record a Declaration of Restrictive Covenants documenting those restrictions, and must provide EPA with access to the U.S. Titanium Superfund site located at the southern boundary of Nelson County, Virginia, to resolve claims incurred at the site. 72 FR 7460 (2/15/07).
  • United States v. City of New York, No. 99-2207 (S.D.N.Y. Feb. 2, 2007). A settling CAA defendant must perform a supplemental environmental project (SEP) comprising an urban forest project in lieu of two SEPs required under an original consent decree that resolved the government's claims against the defendant and the New York Department of Sanitation for the improper disposal of appliances that contained ozone-depleting substances. 72 FR 7460 (2/15/07).
  • United States v. USX Corp., No. 98 C 6398 (N.D. Ill. Jan. 31, 2007). Settling CERCLA defendants must pay an additional $300,000 for natural resource damages and for reimbursement of natural resource damage assessment costs incurred by certain government agencies to resolve claims relating to the Yeoman Creek Landfill Superfund site in Waukegan, Illinois. 72 FR 7460 (2/15/07).
  • United States v. Zeneca Inc., No. 07-10181 (D. Mass. Jan. 31, 2007). Settling CERCLA defendants must pay EPA all net proceeds (estimated at $400,000) from the sale of the St. Germain Drum Superfund site in Taunton, Massachusetts, and must pay the Agency $2,562,260.49, plus interest, to resolve its liability at the St. Germain Drum Superfund site, the Oak Street Drum Superfund site, and the Route 44 Disposal Area Superfund site in Taunton, Massachusetts. 72 FR 7461 (2/15/07).

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

THE CONGRESS

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

COMMITTEE ACTION:

  • S. 200 (groundwater) was reported by the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. No. 110-20, 153 Cong. Rec. S2164 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill would require the Secretary of the Interior, acting through the Bureau of Reclamation and the U.S. Geological Survey, to conduct a study on groundwater resources in the state of Alaska.
  • S. 202 (land conveyance) was reported by the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. No. 110-6, 153 Cong. Rec. S2022 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill would provide for the conveyance of certain Forest Service land to the city of Coffman Cove, Alaska.
  • S. 216 (land exchange) was reported by the committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. No. 110-7, 153 Cong. Rec. S2022 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill would provide for the exchange of certain federal land in the Santa Fe National Forest and certain nonfederal land in the Pecos National Historical Park in the state of New Mexico.
  • S. 220 (irrigation) was reported by the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. No. 110-26, 153 Cong. Rec. S2164 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill would authorize early repayment of obligations to the Bureau of Reclamation within the A&B Irrigation District in the state of Idaho.
  • S. 232 (watersheds) was reported by the committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. No. 110-8, 153 Cong. Rec. S2022 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill would make permanent the authorization for watershed restoration and enhancement agreements.
  • S. 235 (land conveyance) was reported by the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. No. 110-21, 153 Cong. Rec. S2164 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to convey certain buildings and lands of the Yakima Project, Washington, to the Yakima-Tieton Irrigation District.
  • S. 240 (National Geologic Mapping Act) was reported by the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. No. 110-9, 153 Cong. Rec. S2022 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill would reauthorize and amend the National Geologic Mapping Act of 1992.
  • S. 241 (national park system) was reported by the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. No. 110-10, 153 Cong. Rec. S2022 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to enter into cooperative agreements to protect natural resources of units of the National Park System through collaborative efforts on land inside and outside of units of the National Park System.
  • S. 245 (national park system) was reported by the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. No. 110-11, 153 Cong. Rec. S2022 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to designate the President William Jefferson Clinton Birthplace Home in Hope, Arkansas, as a National Historic Site and unit of the National Park System.
  • S. 255 (water) was reported by the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. No. 110-12, 153 Cong. Rec. S2022 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill would provide assistance to the state of New Mexico for the development of comprehensive state water plans.
  • S. 260 (conservation) was reported by the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. No. 110-13, 153 Cong. Rec. S2022 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill would establish the Fort Stanton-Snowy River Cave National Conservation Area.
  • S. 262 (conservation) was reported by the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. 110-14, 153 Cong. Rec. S2022 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill would rename the Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area in the state of Idaho as the Morley Nelson Snake River Birds of Prey National Conservation Area in honor of the late Morley Nelson, an international authority on birds of prey who was instrumental in the establishment of this National Conservation Area.
  • S. 263 (conservation) was reported by the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. No. 110-22, 153 Cong. Rec. S2164 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill would amend the Oregon Resource Conservation Act of 1996 to reauthorize the participation of the Bureau of Reclamation in the Deschutes River Conservancy.
  • S. 264 (dams) was reported by the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. No. 110-23, 153 Cong. Rec. S2164 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill would authorize the Bureau of Reclamation to participate in the rehabilitation of the Wallowa Lake Dam in Oregon.
  • S. 265 (water) was reported by the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. No. 110-24, 153 Cong. Rec. S2164 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill would authorize the Secretary of the Interior, acting through the Bureau of Reclamation, to conduct a water resource feasibility study for the Little Butte/Bear Creek Subbasins in Oregon.
  • S. 266 (irrigation) was reported by the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. No. 110-25, 153 Cong. Rec. S2164 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill would provide for the modification of an amendatory repayment contract between the Secretary of the Interior and the North Unit Irrigation District.
  • S. 268 (land designation) was reported by the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. 110-15, 153 Cong. Rec. S2022 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill would designate the Ice Age Floods National Geologic Trail.
  • S. 277 (national parks) was reported by the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources. S. Rep. 110-16, 153 Cong. Rec. S2022 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill would modify the boundaries of Grand Teton National Park to include certain land within the GT Park Subdivision.
  • H.R. 569 (CWA) was reported by the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure. H. Rep. No.110-16, 153 Cong. Rec. H1891 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill would amend the CWA to authorize appropriations for sewer overflow control grants.
  • H.R. 700 (CWA) was reported by the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure. H. Rep. No. 110-15, 153 Cong. Rec. H1891 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill would amend the CWA to extend the pilot program for alternative water source projects.

BILLS INTRODUCED:

  • S. 544 (Roberts, R-Kan.) (agriculture) would amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to provide a credit to certain agriculture-related businesses for the cost of protecting certain chemicals. 153 Cong. Rec. S1848 (daily ed. Feb. 12, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Finance.
  • S. 551 (Roberts, R-Kan.) (agriculture) would amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to provide a credit to certain agriculture-related businesses for the cost of protecting certain chemicals. 153 Cong. Rec. S1848 (daily ed. Feb. 12, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Finance.
  • S. 552 (Murkowski, R-Alaska) (Exxon Valdez) would provide for the tax treatment of income received in connection with the litigation concerning the Exxon Valdez oil spill. 153 Cong. Rec. S1848 (daily ed. Feb. 12, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Finance.
  • S. 553 (Dodd, D-Conn.) (rivers) would amend the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act to designate certain segments of the Eightmile River in the state of Connecticut as components of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System. 153 Cong. Rec. S1848 (daily ed. Feb. 12, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.
  • S. 564 (Feingold, D-Wis.) (water) would modernize water resources planning. 153 Cong. Rec. S1902 (daily ed. Feb. 13, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Environment and Public Works.
  • S. 570 (Warner, R-Va.) (wilderness) would designate additional National Forest System lands in the state of Virginia as wilderness or a wilderness study area, designate the Kimberling Creek Potential Wilderness Area for eventual incorporation in the Kimberling Creek Wilderness, establish the Seng Mountain and Bear Creek Scenic Areas, and provide for the development of trail plans for the wilderness areas and scenic areas. 153 Cong. Rec. S1902 (daily ed. Feb. 13, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.
  • S. 579 (Reid, D-Nev.) (health) would amend the Public Health Service Act to authorize the Director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences to make grants for the development and operation of research centers regarding environmental factors that may be related to the etiology of breast cancer. 153 Cong. Rec. S1958 (daily ed. Feb. 14, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.    
  • S. 580 (Hatch, R-Utah) (wilderness) would amend the National Trails System Act to require the Secretary of the Interior to update the feasibility and suitability studies of four national historic trails. 153 Cong. Rec. S1958 (daily ed. Feb. 14, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.    
  • S. 590 (Smith, R-Or.) (energy) would amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to extend the investment tax credit with respect to solar energy property and qualified fuel cell property. 153 Cong. Rec. S1958 (daily ed. Feb. 14, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Finance.
  • S. 617 (Smith, R-Or.) (national parks) would make the National Parks and Federal Recreational Lands Pass available at a discount to certain veterans. 153 Cong. Rec. S2023 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.
  • S. 622 (Harkin, D-Iowa) (agriculture) would enhance fair and open competition in the production and sale of agricultural commodities. 153 Cong. Rec. S2023 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry.
  • S. 637 (Sessions, R-Ala.) (national heritage area) would direct the Secretary of the Interior to study the suitability and feasibility of establishing the Chattahoochee Trace National Heritage Corridor in Alabama and Georgia. 153 Cong. Rec. S2023 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.
  • S. 642 (Durbin, D-Ill.) (environmental justice) would codify Executive Order 12898, relating to environmental justice, to require the Administrator of EPA to fully implement the recommendations of the Inspector General of the Agency and the Comptroller General of the United States. 153 Cong. Rec. S2023 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Environment and Public Works.
  • S. 645 (Thomas, R-Wyo.) (energy) would amend the Energy Policy Act of 2005 to provide an alternate sulfur dioxide removal measurement for certain coal gasification project goals. 153 Cong. Rec. S2023 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.
  • S. 647 (Wyden, D-Or.) (wilderness) would designate certain land in the state of Oregon as wilderness. 153 Cong. Rec. S2023-24 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.
  • S. 649 (Clinton, D-N.Y.) (nuclear energy) would require the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to conduct an independent safety assessment of the Indian Point Nuclear Power Plant. 153 Cong. Rec. S2024 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Environment and Public Works.
  • S. 658 (Thomas, R-Wyo.) (ESA) would amend the ESA to improve the process for listing, recovery planning, and delisting. 153 Cong. Rec. S2164 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Environment and Public Works.
  • S. 662 (Snowe, R-Me.) (national parks) would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a special resource study to evaluate resources at the Harriet Beecher Stowe House in Brunswick, Maine, and determine the suitability and feasibility of establishing the site as a unit of the National Park System. 153 Cong. Rec. S2164 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources.
  • S. 666 (Schumer, D-N.Y.) (oil and gas) would amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to terminate certain incentives for oil and gas. 153 Cong. Rec. S2164 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Finance.
  • S. 669 (Cantwell, D-Wash.) (energy) would amend the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Act of 1981 to provide procedures for the release of Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program contingency funds. 153 Cong. Rec. S2165 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions.
  • S. 672 (Salazar, D-Colo.) (energy) would amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to provide tax-exempt financing for qualified renewable energy facilities. 153 Cong. Rec. S2165 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Finance.
  • S. 673 (Salazar, D-Colo.) (wind energy) would amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to provide credits for the installation of wind energy property, including by rural homeowners, farmers, ranchers, and small businesses. 153 Cong. Rec. S2165 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Finance.
  • H.R. 986 (Courtney, D-Conn.) (rivers) would amend the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act to designate certain segments of the Eightmile River in the state of Connecticut as components of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System. 153 Cong. Rec. H1470 (daily ed. Feb. 12, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 994 (Hall, D-N.Y.) (energy) would require the NRC to conduct an Independent Safety Assessment of the Indian Point Energy Center. 153 Cong. Rec. H1471 (daily ed. Feb. 12, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce.
  • H.R. 999 (Miller, R-Fla.) (land use) would provide for the Secretary of Agriculture to release the reversionary interest of the United States on certain land in the state of Florida if encroachments and trespassing have occurred on that land. 153 Cong. Rec. H1471 (daily ed. Feb. 12, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Agriculture.
  • H.R. 1006 (Young, R-Alaska) (marine mammals) would amend the provisions of law relating to the John H. Prescott Marine Mammal Rescue Assistance Grant Program. 153 Cong. Rec. H1563 (daily ed. Feb. 13, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 1007 (Young, R-Alaska) (marine mammals) would amend the Marine Mammal Protection Act of 1972 to repeal the long-term goal for reducing to zero the incidental mortality and serious injury of marine mammals in commercial fishing operations, and modify the goal of take reduction plans for reducing such takings. 153 Cong. Rec. H1563 (daily ed. Feb. 13, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.   
  • H.R. 1011 (Boucher, D-Va.) (wilderness) would designate additional National Forest System lands in the state of Virginia as wilderness or a wilderness study area, designate the Kimberling Creek Potential Wilderness Area for eventual incorporation in the Kimberling Creek Wilderness, establish the Seng Mountain and Bear Creek Scenic Areas, and provide for the development of trail plans for the wilderness areas and scenic areas. 153 Cong. Rec. H1563 (daily ed. Feb. 13, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources and Committee on Agriculture.
  • H.R. 1016 (Delahunt, D-Mass.) (public land) would amend the Omnibus Parks and Public Lands Management Act of 1996 to authorize the Secretary of the Interior to enter into cooperative agreements with any of the management partners of the Boston Harbor Islands National Recreation Area. 153 Cong. Rec. H1563 (daily ed. Feb. 13, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.   
  • H.R. 1021 (Frank, D-Mass.) (national park system) would direct the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a special resources study regarding the suitability and feasibility of designating certain historic buildings and areas in Taunton, Massachusetts, as a unit of the National Park System. 153 Cong. Rec. H1563 (daily ed. Feb. 13, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 1025 (Moran, R-Kan.) (water) would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a study to determine the feasibility of implementing a water supply and conservation project to improve water supply reliability, increase the capacity of water storage, and improve water management efficiency in the Republican River Basin between Harlan County Lake in Nebraska and Milford Lake in Kansas. 153 Cong. Rec. H1563 (daily ed. Feb. 13, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 1036 (Young, R-Alaska) (land conveyance) would authorize the Administrator of General Services to convey a parcel of real property to the Alaska Railroad Corporation. 153 Cong. Rec. H1564 (daily ed. Feb. 13, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.    
  • H.R. 1039 (Sullivan, R-Okla.) (national park system) would direct the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a special resources study regarding the suitability and feasibility of designating the John Hope Franklin Greenwood Memorial/Museum of Reconciliation and other sites in Tulsa, Oklahoma, relating to the 1921 Tulsa race riot as a unit of the National Park System. 153 Cong. Rec. H1667 (daily ed. Feb. 14, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 1047 (Clay, D-Mo.) (national park system) would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to conduct a study to determine the suitability and feasibility of designating the Soldiers' Memorial Military Museum located in St. Louis, Missouri, as a unit of the National Park System. 153 Cong. Rec. H1667 (daily ed. Feb. 14, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.   
  • H.R. 1052 (Jefferson, D-La.) (Army Corps of Engineers) would provide an option to proceed with an action in any federal court to recover actual damages for physical or property damage in a major disaster that proximately results from the failure or negligence of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in the design, construction, or maintenance of a project for which the Corps is legally responsible. 153 Cong. Rec. H1667-68 (daily ed. Feb. 14, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary and Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.
  • H.R. 1080 (Cubin, R-Wyo.) (national parks) would modify the boundaries of Grand Teton National Park to include certain land within the GT Park Subdivision. 153 Cong. Rec. H1788-89 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 1083 (English, R-Pa.) (national heritage area) would amend the Act establishing the Rivers of Steel National Heritage Area in order to include Butler County, Pennsylvania, within the boundaries of that heritage area. 153 Cong. Rec. H1789 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 1087 (Eddie Bernice Johnson, D-Tex.) (CAA) would amend the CAA to require that mercury emissions from electric utility steam generating units be subject to the maximum achievable control technology standard for hazardous air pollutants. 153 Cong. Rec. H1789 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce.
  • H.R. 1091 (Mack, R-Fla.) (algal blooms) would reauthorize the Harmful Algal Bloom and Hypoxia Research and Control Act of 1998. 153 Cong. Rec. H1789 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Science and Technology and Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 1098 (Salazar, D-Colo.) (dam safety) would amend the National Dam Safety Program Act to establish a program to provide grant assistance to states for the rehabilitation and repair of deficient dams. 153 Cong. Rec. H1789 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.
  • H.R. 1099 (Schwartz, D-Colo.) (FEMA) would amend the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act to protect disaster assistance employee reservists when activated by FEMA for work at a specific disaster site from termination or demotion in their places of employment. 153 Cong. Rec. H1789 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.
  • H.R. 1103 (Solis, D-Cal.) (environmental justice) would codify Executive Order 12898, relating to environmental justice, to require the Administrator of EPA to fully implement the recommendations of the Inspector General of the Agency and the Comptroller General of the United States. 153 Cong. Rec. H1789-90 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce and Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 1114 (Young, R-Alaska) (groundwater) would require the Secretary of the Interior, acting through the Bureau of Reclamation and the U.S. Geological Survey, to conduct a study on groundwater resources in the state of Alaska. 153 Cong. Rec. H1892 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 1133 (Berkley, D-Nev.) (energy) would provide for the energy independence of the United States. 153 Cong. Rec. H1893 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Ways and Means and Committees on Natural Resources, Energy and Commerce, and Science and Technology.
  • H.R. 1139 (Calvert, R-Cal.) (water) would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to plan, design, and construct facilities to provide water for irrigation, municipal, domestic, and other uses from the Bunker Hill Groundwater Basin, Santa Ana River, California. 153 Cong. Rec. H1893 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 1140 (Calvert, R-Cal.) (water) would authorize the Secretary, in cooperation with the city of San Juan Capistrano, California, to participate in the design, planning, and construction of an advanced water treatment plant facility and recycled water system. 153 Cong. Rec. H1893 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.  
  • H.R. 1143 (Christensen, D-V.I.) (land leasing) would authorize the Secretary of the Interior to lease certain lands in Virgin Islands National Park. 153 Cong. Rec. H1893 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.    
  • H.R. 1145 (Cramer, D-Ala.) (national heritage area) would establish the Muscle Shoals National Heritage Area in the state of Alabama. 153 Cong. Rec. H1893 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 1152 (Gerlach, R-Pa.) (land use) would reserve a small percentage of the amounts made available to the Secretary of Agriculture for the farmland protection program to fund challenge grants to encourage the purchase of conservation easements and other interests in land to be held by a state agency, county, or other eligible entity. 153 Cong. Rec. H1894 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Agriculture.   
  • H.R. 1157 (Lowey, D-N.Y.) (health) would amend the Public Health Service Act to authorize the Director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences to make grants for the development and operation of research centers regarding environmental factors that may be related to the etiology of breast cancer. 153 Cong. Rec. H1894 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Energy and Commerce.   
  • H.R. 1175 (Loretta Sanchez, D-Cal.) (water) would amend the Reclamation Wastewater and Groundwater Study and Facilities Act to increase the ceiling on the federal share of the costs of phase I of the Orange County, California, Regional Water Reclamation Project. 153 Cong. Rec. H1894 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.    
  • H.R. 1179 (Udall, D-Colo.) (national parks) would clarify the authority of the Secretary of the Interior with regard to the management of elk in Rocky Mountain National Park. 153 Cong. Rec. H1894 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H.R. 1180 (Udall, D-Colo.) (oil and gas) would assure that development of certain federal oil and gas resources will occur in ways that protect water resources and respect the rights of the surface owners. 153 Cong. Rec. H1895 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.    
  • H.R. 1186 (Wilson, R-S.C.) (energy) would promote global energy security through increased cooperation between the United States and India in diversifying sources of energy, stimulating development of alternative fuels, developing and deploying technologies that promote the clean and efficient use of coal, and improving energy efficiency. 153 Cong. Rec. H1895 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Foreign Affairs.
  • H.R. 1187 (Woolsey, D-Cal.) (marine sanctuaries) would expand the boundaries of the Gulf of the Farallones National Marine Sanctuary and the Cordell Bank National Marine Sanctuary. 153 Cong. Rec. H1895 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The bill was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H. Res. 167 (Rahall, D-W. Va.) (natural resources) would provide amounts for the expenses of the Committee on Natural Resources in the 110th Congress. 153 Cong. Rec. H1790 (daily ed. Feb. 15, 2007). The resolution was referred to the Committee on House Administration.
  • H. Res. 186 (Pallone, D-N.J.) (beaches) would support the goals and ideals of National Clean Beaches Week and recognize the considerable value of American beaches and their role in American culture. 153 Cong. Rec. H1896 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The resolution was referred to the Committee on Natural Resources.
  • H. Res. 187 (Peterson, D-Minn.) (agriculture) would provide amounts for the expenses of the Committee on Agriculture in the 110th Congress. 153 Cong. Rec. H1896 (daily ed. Feb. 16, 2007). The resolution was referred to the Committee on House Administration.
  • H.J. Res. 33 (Jackson, D-Ill.) (sustainability) would propose an amendment the Constitution of the United States respecting the right to a clean, safe, and sustainable environment. 153 Cong. Rec. H1564 (daily ed. Feb. 13, 2007). The joint resolution was referred to the Committee on the Judiciary.

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:

Alaska Maine North Carolina Arizona Maryland Oklahoma Arkansas Massachusetts Pennsylvania California Michigan Rhode Island Colorado Minnesota South Carolina Florida Missouri Utah Illinois Nebraska Virginia Indiana New Mexico Wisconsin

ALASKA

Fisheries:

ARIZONA

General:

  • The Department of Agriculture, Division of Environmental Services, has proposed amendments to R3-3-102: Table 1, R3-3-1101, R3-3-1102, R3-3-1103, R3-3-1104, R3-3-1105, R3-3-1106, R3-3-1107, R3-3-1108, R3-3-1109, R3-3-1110, and Appendix A and the repeal of 3-3-1111. This rulemaking clarifies requirements under Native Plant provisions of the Environmental Services Division, updates scientific names and definitions, and makes the rules in line with current practices. See http://www.azsos.gov/public_services/Register/2007/7/proposed.pdf

ARKSANSAS

Water:

  • The Arkansas Pollution Control and Ecology Commission will hold a public hearing to receive comments on a third-party proposal by Clean Harbors El Dorado, LLC, to change the Arkansas Water Quality Standards (PC&EC Regulation No. 2) for Boggy Creek in Union County, which receives a wastewater discharge from Clean Harbors' hazardous waste treatment and incineration facility at El Dorado. The hearing will be held March 19, 2007. See http://www.adeq.state.ar.us/poa/pa/pn_reg_notice.asp

CALIFORNIA

Water:

  • The Department of Health Services is soliciting public comment on proposed amendments to Title 22, California Code of Regulations, R-20-01: Interim Enhanced Surface Water Treatment Rule. Comments are due March 30, 2007. See http://www.oal.ca.gov/notice/6z-2007.pdf (p. 230)
  • The Fish and Game Commission will hold a public hearing on the proposal to add Section 721, Title 14, California Code of Regulations, relating to suspension of flow requirements from Grizzly Valley Dam at Lake Davis. Hearings will be held March 2, 2007, and April 13, 2006. Comments are due no later than April 13, 2007. See http://www.oal.ca.gov/notice/7z-2007.pdf (p. 295)

Wildlife:

  • The Fish and Game Commission will hold a public hearing on proposed amendments to Sections 353 and 475, Title 14, California Code of Regulations, relating to Mammal Hunting--Method of Take Regulations. The proposed change would require that centerfire bullets, muzzleloading balls, slugs, and buckshot used for the take of nongame birds and mammals in the geographic area inhabited by the California condor be non-lead bullets. Hearings will be held March 2, 2007, and April 13, 2006. Comments are due no later than April 13, 2007. See http://www.oal.ca.gov/notice/7z-2007.pdf (p. 299)
  • The Fish and Game Commission will hold a public hearing on proposed amendments to Sections 360, 361, 362, 363, 364, 702, and 708, Title 14, California Code of Regulations, relating to Mammal Hunting Regulations. Hearings will be held March 2, 2007, and April 13, 2006. Comments are due no later than April 13, 2007. See http://www.oal.ca.gov/notice/7z-2007.pdf (p. 301)

Fisheries:

  • The Fish and Game Commission will hold a public hearing on proposed amendments to Section 5.51 and an addition to subsection 7.50(b)(53.8), Title 14, California Code of Regulations, relating to sport fishing in Lake Davis. Hearings will be held March 2, 2007, and April 13, 2006. Comments are due no later than April 13, 2007. See http://www.oal.ca.gov/notice/7z-2007.pdf (p.297)
  • The Fish and Game Commission will hold a public hearing on proposed amendments to Section 27.80, Title 14, California Code of Regulations, relating to ocean salmon sport fishing. Hearings will be held March 2, 2007, and April 13, 2006. Comments are due no later than April 13, 2007. See http://www.oal.ca.gov/notice/7z-2007.pdf (p.314)

COLORADO

Water:

  • The Department of Public Health and Environment will hold a public hearing for consideration of the adoption of revised ammonia standards for multiple segments in the Classifications and Numeric Standards for Arkansas River Basin, Regulation #32 (5 CCR 1002-32); in the Classifications and Numeric Standards for Upper Colorado River Basin and North Platte River (Planning Region 12), Regulation #33 (5 CCR 1002-33); in the Classifications and Numeric Standards for Rio Grande Basin, Regulation #36 (5 CCR 1002-36); in the Classifications and Numeric Standards for Lower Colorado River Basin, Regulation #37 (5 CCR 1002-37); and in the Classifications and Numeric Standards for South Platte River Basin, Laramie River Basin, Republican, Smoky Hill River Basin, Regulation #38 (5 CCR 1002-38). The hearing will be held March 13, 2007. See http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/op/wqcc/MeetingsandHearings/HearingNotices/rulemaking/wqrmnot.html.
  • The Department of Public Health and Environment will hold a public hearing for consideration of the adoption of revisions to the copper standards for Boulder Creek segment 9, in the Classifications and Numeric Standards for South Platte River Basin, Regulation #38 (5 CCR 1002-38) and for consideration of the adoption of revisions to the Dillon Reservoir Control Regulation, Regulation #71 (5 CCR 1002-71). The hearing will be held April 9, 2007. See http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/op/wqcc/MeetingsandHearings/HearingNotices/rulemaking/wqrmnot.html
  • The Department of Public Health and Environment will hold a public hearing for consideration of the adoption of revised water quality classifications, standards, and designations for multiple segments in the Arkansas River Basin, Regulation #32 (5 CCR 1002-32) and in the Rio Grande Basin, Regulation #36 (5 CCR 1002-36). The hearing will be held June 11, 2007. See http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/op/wqcc/MeetingsandHearings/HearingNotices/rulemaking/wqrmnot.html
  • The Department of Public Health and Environment will hold a public hearing for consideration of the adoption of a new Water Quality Improvement Fund Rule, Regulation #55 (proposed to be codified at 5 CCR 1002-55). The hearing will be held May 15, 2007. See http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/op/wqcc/MeetingsandHearings/HearingNotices/rulemaking/wqrmnot.html
  • The Department of Public Health and Environment will hold a public hearing for consideration of the adoption of revisions to the Procedural Rules, Regulation #21 (5 CCR 1002-21). The hearing will be held May 14, 2007. See http://www.cdphe.state.co.us/op/wqcc/MeetingsandHearings/HearingNotices/rulemaking/wqrmnot.html

FLORIDA

Fisheries:

  • The Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission held a public meeting on proposed amendments to 68E-1, Marine Turtle Permits; 68E-1.002, Introduction, Scope and Definitions; 68E-1.004, General Permit Application Procedures, Requirements and Expiration; 68E-1.0041, Authorizations for Marine Turtle Research, Conservation, and Educational Activities; and 68E-1.005, Suspensions and Revocation. The proposed rule amendment outlines the procedures by which an accredited entity can apply for a Marine Turtle Permit, the basis for the Commission to issue these permits, and criteria for permit approval. The meeting was held February 19, 2007. See http://faw.dos.state.fl.us/newfaw/FAWVOLUMEFOLDERS2007/3306/SECTII.pdf (p. 652)

Water:

General:

  • The Department of Environmental Protection will hold a public hearing on proposed amendments to 62-16.100, General; 62-16.200, Definitions; 62-16.300, Renewable Energy Technologies Grants Program; 62-16.400, Renewable Energy Technologies Grants Program for Bioenergy; 62-16.500, Solar Energy Systems Incentives Program; 62-16.600, Renewable Energy Technologies Investment Tax Credit; 62-16.700, Renewable Energy Technologies Sales Tax Program; and 62-16.900, Forms. The proposed rule development involves the creation of new rule Chapter 62-16, Florida Administrative Code, related to implementation of the Florida Renewable Energy Technologies and Energy Efficiency Act, Sections 377.801-.806, Florida Statutes, as enacted in Senate Bill 888, signed June 19, 2006. The hearing will be held March 21, 2007. See http://faw.dos.state.fl.us/newfaw/FAWVOLUMEFOLDERS2007/3306/SECTII.pdf (p. 643)

ILLINOIS

Wildlife:

  • The Department of Natural Resources is soliciting public comment on proposed amendments to 17 Ill. Adm. Code 650.10, 650.20, 650.22, 650.60, and 650.57 -- White-Tailed Deer Hunting by Use of Firearms; 17 Ill. Adm. Code 660.20, 660.22, and 660.60 -- White-Tailed Deer Hunting by Use of Muzzleloading Rifles; and 17 Ill. Adm. Code 670.20, 670.30, and 670. 60 -- White-Tailed Deer Hunting by Use of Bow and Arrow. See http://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/departments/index/register/register_volume31_issue7.pdf (p. 2742)

INDIANA

Hazardous and Solid Waste:

Wildlife:

  • The Natural Resources Commission will hold a public hearing on proposed amendments to 312 IAC 9-3-2, 312 IAC 9-3-4, and 312 IAC 9-3-5 governing the management of fish and wildlife to extend the expiration date of the restriction of taking only one antlered deer a year to September 1, 2012, and to extend the expiration dates of seasonal bag limit restrictions for taking an antlered deer by means of a crossbow to September 1, 2012. The hearing will be held March 27, 2007. See http://www.in.gov/legislative/register/20070221-IR-312060572PRA.xml.pdf

General:

  • The Natural Resources Commission will hold a public hearing on the proposal to add 312 IAC 18-3-20, under the article pertaining to entomology and plant pathology, to regulate Brazilian elodea (Egeria densa), an exotic plant, as a pest or pathogen. The hearing will be held March 27, 2007. See http://www.in.gov/legislative/register/20070221-IR-312060570PRA.xml.pdf

MAINE

Fisheries:

  • The Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife is soliciting public comment on a rule to require that all bass taken during a bass fishing tournament shall be returned to the water from which it was caught, unharmed as far as possible, at the conclusion of the tournament day. These regulations were inadvertently repealed in an earlier rulemaking initiative. Comments are due March 23, 2007. See http://www.maine.gov/sos/cec/rules/notices/2007/022107.htm

Land Use:

  • The Department of Conservation, Land Use Regulation Commission, is soliciting public comment on proposed Rule Number 2007-P39, Ch. 10, Land Use Districts and Standards: Proposed Rule Changes Regarding Affordable Housing. The new policy statement and rules will provide for affordable housing opportunities within the Commission's jurisdiction. Comments are due March 16, 2007. See http://www.maine.gov/sos/cec/rules/notices/2007/021407.htm

Water:

  • The Department of Environmental Protection is soliciting public comment on proposed amendments to update Ch. 595, State Revolving Fund, Rule Number 2007-P34 and P35. These proposed amendments would update the rule, originally adopted in 1990, to allow the use of the fund for additional water improvement practices, add flexibility for borrowers, pay for administration of the program, and reflect changes to federal requirements regarding the program. Comments are due March 16, 2007. See http://www.maine.gov/sos/cec/rules/notices/2007/021407.htm

Wildlife:

  • The Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (IF&W) is soliciting public comment on the proposal to readopt essential habitat designations that were advertised, adopted, and consented to by the IF&W Advisory Council, but were not filed with the Secretary of State's Office within the deadline. In summary, 65 additional designations of areas as essential habitat for bald eagle nest sites, 27 deletions of previously designated essential habitats for bald eagles, 1 relocation of previously designated essential habitats for bald eagles, and 2 administrative relabels of previously designated essential habitats for bald eagles are proposed. Comments are due March 23, 2007. See http://www.maine.gov/sos/cec/rules/notices/2007/022107.htm

MARYLAND

Fisheries:

  • The Secretary of Natural Resources has adopted amendments to Regulations .05 and .07, the repeal of existing Regulation .10, and new Regulation .10 under COMAR 08.02.03--Crabs. These changes, which relate to Recreational Crabbing Catch and Possession Limits in the Chesapeake Bay and its Tidal Tributaries, were adopted on February 6, 2007, and will become effective February 26, 2007. See http://www.dsd.state.md.us/mdregister/3404/main_register.htm

General:

MASSACHUSETTS

Air:

  • The Department of Environmental Protection will hold public hearings on proposed amendments to 310 CMR 7.25, Best Available Controls for Consumer and Commercial Products.  These amendments are designed to reduce emissions of volatile organic compounds from consumer products and architectural and industrial maintenance coatings.  The hearings will be held February 28, 2007, and March 2, 2007. See http://www.mass.gov/dep/public/aimcpphn.htm

MICHIGAN

Air:

  • The Department of Environmental Quality, Air Quality Division, has adopted Rule 336.1660--Standards for volatile organic compounds emissions from consumer products, and R 336.1661-- Definitions for consumer products. These rules became effective February 7, 2007. See http://www.michigan.gov/documents/cis/MR2_021507_187045_7.pdf (p. 2)

MINNESOTA

Land Use:

  • The Minnesota Forest Resources Council is requesting public review and comment on proposed guidelines for the sustainable harvest of woody biomass from forestland and brushland. Minnesota Statute 216B.2424 mandates that the Minnesota Forest Resources Council and the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources develop guidelines or best management practices for "sustainably managed woody biomass" for both forestland and brushland. The statute requires that these guidelines must be reviewed and approved by the Council by July 1, 2007. Comments are due March 1, 2007. See http://www.comm.media.state.mn.us/bookstore/stateregister/31_34.pdf (p. 1140)

MISSOURI

Air:

  • The Department of Natural Resources will hold a public hearing on proposed rescission of 10 CSR 10-5.375: Motor Vehicle Emission Inspection Waiver. This rule will be obsolete after September 1, 2007, because 643.303 of RSMo requires that the Missouri Air Conservation Commission promulgate rulemakings by July 1, 2007, to implement a transition from the current St. Louis vehicle emissions test program to a new vehicle emissions test program by September 1, 2007, that would apply to the entire St. Louis ozone nonattainment area. The hearing will be held March 29, 2007. See http://www.sos.mo.gov/adrules/moreg/current/2007/v32n4/v32n4a.pdf (p. 305)

NEBRASKA

Water:

  • The Department of Natural Resources will hold a public hearing on Title 262, Chapter 003, Section 004: Rules and Regulations Governing the Administration of the Nebraska Conservation Fund-- Availability of Federal Funds. The hearing will be held March 22, 2007. See http://www.sos.state.ne.us/business/regtrack/index.cgi

NEW MEXICO

Air:

  • The Air Quality Control Board held a combined public hearing on February 14, 2007, that addressed the proposal to amend 20.11.20 NMAC, Fugitive Dust Control, and the proposal to incorporate a newly amended 20.11.20 NMAC into the New Mexico SIP for air quality. Following the combined hearing, the Air Board will hold its regular monthly meeting during which the Air Board is expected to consider adoption of the proposed regulation amendments and incorporating the newly amended regulation into the SIP. See http://www.nmcpr.state.nm.us/nmregister/xviii/xviii03/AirQualnotice.htm

Water:

 NORTH CAROLINA

Air:

  • The Department of Environment and Natural Resources will hold a public hearing on the proposal to adopt the rules cited as 15A NCAC 02D .1211, .1907, amend the rules cited as 15A NCAC 02D .0516, .0519, .0521, .0524, .0540, .0902, .0909, .0960, .1201 - .1202, .1208, .1402 - .1403, .1901 - .1904, .2303; 02Q .0102, .0207, and repeal the rules cited as 15A NCAC 02D .1004; 02Q .0506. These rules relate to air pollution control requirements and emission control standards. The hearing will be held March 14, 2007. Comments are due April 16, 2007. See http://www.ncoah.com/rules/register/Volume21Issue16February152007-web.pdf (p. 1489)

OKLAHOMA

Hazardous and Solid Waste:

  • The Department of Environmental Quality has adopted the following emergency amendments: 252:4-7-51; 252:4-7-52; and 252:4-7-53. The amendments modify the rules related to hazardous waste permitting requirements to include provisions for the new RCRA standardized permit. These rules became effective February 14, 2007, and will remain effective through July 14, 2007. See http://www.oar.state.ok.us/register/Volume-24_Issue-11.htm#a100356

PENNSYLVANIA

Air:

  • The Department of Environmental Protection is providing notice and an opportunity for comment regarding the proposed nitrogen dioxide allowance allocations from the new source set-aside for the 2007 control period May 1, 2007, through September 30, 2007. The new source set-aside contains 2,542 allowances, 1,920 of which are available for new sources after allocation corrections. Comments are due March 5, 2007. See http://www.pabulletin.com/secure/data/vol37/37-7/250.html
  • The Department of Environmental Protection is seeking public comment on the eight-hour ozone redesignation request, the 2002 base year inventory, and a SIP revision setting forth a maintenance plan that demonstrates that the area can maintain the health-based ozone standard for the next 10 years as required under §175A(a) of the federal CAA. The maintenance plan, once approved by U.S. EPA, will also establish new motor vehicle emission budgets for purposes of transportation conformity. Comments are due March 21, 2007. See http://www.pabulletin.com/secure/data/vol37/37-7/251.html
  •  The Environmental Quality Board has adopted amendments to Chapter 123 relating to standards for contaminants. This amendment establishes "state-specific" requirements to reduce mercury emissions from coal-fired electric generating units (EGUs) with a nameplate rated capacity of 25 megawatts or more that produce electricity for sale. The rulemaking establishes mercury emission standards; annual emission limitations as part of a statewide annual nontradable mercury allowance program; and monitoring, recordkeeping, and reporting requirements to reduce mercury emissions from coal-fired EGUs or cogeneration units. This rulemaking will be submitted to U.S. EPA as an element of the state plan required under §111(d) of the Clean Air Act. This order was adopted by the Board at its meeting of October 17, 2006. See http://www.pabulletin.com/secure/data/vol37/37-7/300.html

RHODE ISLAND

Air:

  • The Department of Environmental Management will hold a public hearing regarding a proposed new Air Pollution Control (APC) regulation entitled "Rhode Island Air Pollution Control General Definitions" and numerous amendments to APC Regulations. The proposed action would remove the definitions of 40 terms that are used in multiple APC regulations from the individual regulations and would place those definitions in the new General Definitions regulation. The definition of certain terms, such as "Volatile Organic Compound" or "VOC," would be updated to be consistent with current federal definitions. The proposed action also includes administrative changes that would make the format and terminology in the APC regulations more consistent and would correct typographical errors and update outdated terminology in the current regulations. The hearing will be held March 23, 2007. Comments are due March 23, 2007. See http://www.dem.ri.gov/programs/benviron/air/defspnot.htm

SOUTH CAROLINA

Hazardous and Solid Waste:

  • The Department of Health and Environmental Control will hold a public hearing on proposed amendments to R.61-30 by increasing fees for specific radioactive material licenses, reciprocity licenses, and radioactive waste transportation permits. Legislative review will be required. The hearing will be held April 12, 2007. See http://www.scdhec.gov/lwm/pubs/notices/r61_30.pdf

Water:

  • The Department of Health and Environmental Control seeks public comment on proposed amendments to sections of R.61-68, Water Classifications and Standards, and sections of R. 61-69, Classified Waters. Comments are due February 26, 2007. See http://www.scdhec.gov/water/pubs/pn0107.pdf

UTAH

Land Use:

  • The Department of Natural Resources, Forestry, Fire and State Lands is soliciting public comment on a proposed new rule: R652-140--Utah Forest Practices Act. This rule provides procedures for the registration of forest operators, the notification of forest practices, and provides some exceptions to the Forest Practices Act. Comments are due March 19, 2007. See http://www.rules.utah.gov/publicat/bulletin/2007/20070215/29461.htm

Hazardous and Solid Waste :

  • The Department of Environmental Quality will hold a public hearing on proposed new rule R311-600, Hazardous Substances Mitigation Act: Enforceable Written Assurances. The purpose of this rule is to describe the principles and procedures the Executive Director of the Department will use in responding to requests for enforceable written assurances under the Hazardous Substances Mitigation Act, Title 19, Chapter 6, Part 3. The hearing will be held March 12, 2007. See http://www.rules.utah.gov/publicat/bulletin/2007/20070215/29460.htm

VIRGINIA

Water:

  • The Department of Environmental Quality will hold a public meeting to receive comments on the notice of intended regulatory action to amend the Water Quality Standards regulation (9 VAC 25-260) to designate portions of the Hazel River as exceptional state resource waters (Tier III). The notice of intent will be published in the Virginia Register of Regulations on February 19, 2007. The public comment period begins on February 19, 2007, and ends on April 2, 2007. See http://www.townhall.state.va.us/meeting/ViewMeeting.cfm?Meeting_ID=8770
  • The State Water Control Board will hold a public hearing on proposed amendments to 9 VAC 25- 720-60, Water Quality Management Planning Regulation. The hearing will be held April 3, 2007. Comments are due April 20, 2007. See http://legis.state.va.us/codecomm/register/vol23/iss12/v23i12.pdf (p. 1973)

WISCONSIN

Air:

  • The Department of Natural Resources will hold a public hearing on the creation of §§ NR 428.20 to 428.28, Wis. Adm. Code, and amendments to §§ NR 428.04(2)(h) and 428.05(3)(e) and 484.04, Wis. Adm. Code, relating to the establishment of rules for reasonable available control technology emission requirements for major sources of nitrogen oxide emissions in the southeast eight-hour ozone nonatttainment counties of Kenosha, Racine, Milwaukee, Waukesha, Washington, Ozaukee, and Sheboygan. The hearing will be held March 15, 2007. See http://www.dnr.state.wi.us/org/caer/ce/news/hearmeet.html
  • The Department of Natural Resources will hold a public hearings on the creation of ch. NR 433 and § NR 484.04(11m) Wis. Adm. Code, relating to the best available retrofit technology (BART) requirements for visibility protection. The department is proposing a rule to address BART-related SIP revisions that are required by the federal regional haze rule. The hearing will be held March 15, 2007. See http://www.dnr.state.wi.us/org/caer/ce/news/hearmeet.html

Fisheries:

Hazardous and Solid Waste:

  • The Department of Natural Resources has adopted rules revising chs. NR 660 to 665, relating to hazardous waste management. The Department of Natural Resources finds that an emergency exists and that rules are necessary for the immediate preservation of the public peace, health, safety or welfare. See http://www.legis.state.wi.us/rsb/code/register/reg614a.pdf (p. 5)

Land Use:

  • The Department of Natural Resources will hold a public hearing via video conference on the amendment of § NR 1.21(2)(e), Wis. Adm. Code, and the creation of § NR 1.26, Wis. Adm. Code, relating to contracting for timber sale establishment services on state land; § NR 45.075, Wis. Adm. Code, relating to declaring natural emergencies on forested lands owned by the state and under the jurisdiction of the Department of Natural Resources; and § NR 1.212(3)(a), Wis. Adm. Code, relating to referral of private timber sale requests to cooperating foresters. The hearing will be held March 21, 2007. Comments are due March 30, 2007. See http://www.dnr.state.wi.us/org/caer/ce/news/hearmeet.html

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

INTERNATIONAL

AUSTRALIA BANS INCANDESCENT LIGHTBULBS

The Australian government announced February 20 that it would completely phase out incandescent lightbulbs in the next three years. Australia, the first country to ban incandescent bulbs in an effort to curb global warming, will replace all conventional bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs by 2009. Environment Minister Malcolm Turnbull says this move will reduce emissions levels by 800,000 tons by the year 2012 and lower household lighting costs by a full two-thirds. See http://www.enn.com/today.html?id=12256

EU AGREES TO EMISSIONS CUTS

European Union (EU) environment ministers that met in Brussels on February 20 agreed to cut greenhouse emissions by 20% from 1990 levels by 2020 in an effort to curb climate change. Ministers further agreed to pursue a 30% cut worldwide if matched by other developed nations, such as the United States and China. However, some EU members, including Hungary and Poland, opposed making emissions cuts mandatory. The EU must still decide how to implement emissions cuts, possibly looking to compromise with member states opposed to mandatory participation. See http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/6377983.stm

BOTSWANA: PROPOSED EIA WAIVER CREATES CONTROVERSY

Minister Baledzi Gaolathe's proposed waiver of the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) has attracted recent criticism from members of the Botswana Council of Non-Governmental Organizations. In the Minister's 2007/2008 budget proposal, the EIA was identified as an obstacle to implementing government projects. Critics argue that waiving the EIA process will attract both corruption and nepotism, with companies finding loopholes to bypass any environmental assessment. See http://allafrica.com/stories/200702201677.html

NEW INTERNATIONAL STANDARD FOR SUSTINABLE COLLECTION OF MEDICINAL PLANTS

The International Standard for Sustainable Collection of Medicinal and Aromatic Plants (ISSC-MAP) was launched at the World Organic Trade Fair, Biofach, on February 16. These new industry standards are meant to provide guidance for companies in order to ensure plants used in medicine and cosmetics are not overexploited. Unsustainable collection threatens the survival of thousands of plant species as 400,000 tons of medicinal and aromatic plants are traded annually. The World Conservation Union (IUCN) and German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation seeks to promote the wide adoption of these standards. See http://www.iucn.org/themes/ssc/news/2007_articles/medicinal_plant.htm

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

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