Environmental

  • July 11, 2024

    8th Circ. OKs Toxic Gas Injury Win, But Cuts Award By $30M

    The Eighth Circuit on Thursday affirmed a jury's finding that Dyno Nobel Inc.'s negligence in handling toxic gas emissions caused serious injuries to a man's larynx but slashed his $43.75 million award down to $13.75 million, saying the explosives company lacked the culpable mental state required for punitive damages.

  • July 11, 2024

    Calif. Tribe Seeks $8.2M For Cultural Site Destruction

    The Quechan Indian Tribe is asking a California federal judge to award it $8.2 million after the court found that a federal government construction project to replace poles for 9 miles of transmission lines damaged 10 cultural and sacred archaeological sites on the tribe's reservation.

  • July 11, 2024

    $1M Fine 'Substantial' In Wash. Dam Settlement, Judge Says

    A Washington federal judge, over objections from tribes and environmental groups, is allowing the government to enter into a proposed consent decree that would settle Clean Water Act violations, saying a $1 million fine against dam operator Electron Hydro is substantial.

  • July 11, 2024

    Oil Giants Defeat City Of Baltimore's Climate Change Claims

    A Maryland judge has dismissed Baltimore's suit seeking climate change-related damages from oil companies including Chevron, Exxon and BP, ruling that the city's claims stem from a global phenomenon and thus are "beyond the limits of Maryland state law."

  • July 11, 2024

    Judge Grants Tesoro Injunction In Pipeline Fight With Feds

    A North Dakota federal judge has granted a Marathon Petroleum Corp. subsidiary's request for an injunction to block an Interior Department order vacating several decisions related to a pipeline crossing through part of the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation.

  • July 11, 2024

    Marathon Oil To Pay $241.5M Over North Dakota Emissions

    The U.S. Department of Justice revealed on Thursday that it has reached a $241.5 million settlement with Marathon Oil, resolving allegations of Clean Air Act violations tied to the company's oil and gas production operations on the Fort Berthold Indian Reservation in North Dakota.

  • July 11, 2024

    Calif. Customers Sue Toyota Over Hydrogen Fuel Scarcity

    Toyota customers in California have slapped the automaker with a proposed class action complaint, saying the scarcity of hydrogen fuel available for their Toyota Mirai hydrogen fuel-cell electric vehicles has rendered them "unsafe, unreliable and inoperable."

  • July 11, 2024

    Coca-Cola Faces Revised Suit Over PFAS In Juice Products

    A New York man has hit Coca-Cola and its Simply Orange Juice Co. subsidiary with a revised proposed class action alleging they deceptively market juices as pure, healthy and all-natural when they actually contain harmful, man-made forever chemicals.

  • July 11, 2024

    Deals Rumor Mill: Saudi Aramco, Paramount Global, Carlyle

    The Carlyle Group is considering acquiring Baxter International's kidney-care spinoff Vantive for about $4 billion, Aramco attracted more than $31 billion in orders for its $6 billion bond sale, and Paramount Global plans to cut more jobs before its merger with Skydance Media closes. Here, Law360 breaks down these and other notable deal rumors from the past week.

  • July 11, 2024

    EPA Grants Petition On Plastic Container PFAS

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency on Wednesday granted a petition asking it to address several so-called forever chemicals formed during the fluorination of plastic containers for a variety of household and industrial uses.

  • July 11, 2024

    Biden Floats $2B To Drive US Auto Industry's EV Pivot

    The Biden administration on Thursday unveiled its latest initiative to bolster domestic automotive production by offering nearly $2 billion in grants to convert 11 auto manufacturing and assembly facilities that have been shuttered or are at risk of closing to build electric vehicles and related components.

  • July 10, 2024

    Roundup Cancer Case Revived By Oregon Appellate Panel

    An Oregon appellate panel on Wednesday revived a lawsuit claiming Bayer AG subsidiary Monsanto's weedkiller Roundup caused an Oregon man's cancer, saying the judge who oversaw the trial that cleared the company wrongly excluded testimony from an expert for the plaintiff.

  • July 10, 2024

    Energy Cos., States Seek Review Of Calif. Emissions Decision

    Industry groups and a coalition of states led by Ohio are asking the U.S. Supreme Court to review a D.C. Circuit ruling upholding the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's approval of a waiver letting California set greenhouse gas emissions standards for vehicles and run a zero-emission vehicles program.

  • July 10, 2024

    ​GOP Bombards Agencies With Demands After Chevron's End

    Republican leaders of major congressional committees Wednesday demanded details from dozens of agencies on policies suddenly shrouded in uncertainty after U.S. Supreme Court conservatives overturned the so-called Chevron doctrine, which for 40 years gave regulators flexibility in rulemaking and advantages in related litigation.

  • July 10, 2024

    Utah Goes 'Too Far' In Seeking Order Clarity, Tribe Says

    A Native American tribe asked a federal district judge Tuesday to deny a bid by Utah to clarify a June order that dismissed the tribe's racial-bidding scheme claims against several state officials, arguing that the state is using the request as a vehicle to ax all remaining allegations in the tribe's suit.

  • July 10, 2024

    3rd Circ. Questions Authority Of Fish Management Councils

    The Third Circuit on Wednesday grappled with whether the "Fishery Management Councils" that set plans and limits for ocean fisheries are merely advisers to the commerce secretary or if they're empowered enough for their members to be subject to Senate confirmation, with one judge suggesting that the panels are essentially "toothless."

  • July 10, 2024

    Mont. High Court Weighs Youths' Right To Sue In Climate Case

    The Montana Supreme Court on Wednesday wrestled with whether to revive state law provisions that bar the consideration of greenhouse gas emissions in permitting decisions that were struck down by a lower court judge, querying both sides whether the youth plaintiffs had standing to sue.

  • July 10, 2024

    Rural Broadband Org. Calls For Speedier Permitting Process

    A rural broadband advocacy group is urging Congress to pass two companion bills that would enable the use of online portals to expedite the permitting process to build high-speed networks on federal lands.

  • July 10, 2024

    Mich. County Fights To Keep $217M Edenville Dam Repair Tax

    Homeowners attacking a localized tax to fund the reconstruction of four dams have already had a chance to contest the assessment and shouldn't get a second one, a Michigan county told a federal judge Tuesday.

  • July 10, 2024

    NC Utility's PFAS Suit Survives Dismissal Bid

    A water utility suing the Chemours Co., Corteva Inc. and E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Co. Inc. over forever chemical contamination stemming from the Fayetteville Works plant in eastern North Carolina saw a number of claims survive their bid to have its suit thrown out.

  • July 10, 2024

    Kirkland, Skadden Steer $1.8B Honeywell Natural Gas Biz Deal

    Kirkland & Ellis LLP-led Honeywell said Wednesday it has agreed to acquire Air Products' liquefied natural gas process technology and equipment business for $1.81 billion in an all-cash transaction, with Skadden Arps Slate Meagher & Flom LLP sitting on the other side of the bargaining table.

  • July 10, 2024

    Insurer, Property Cos. Settle Lead Poisoning Coverage Suit

    An insurer for a Detroit property owner and manager told a Michigan federal court they have settled their coverage dispute over a woman's claims that her 2-year-old girl suffered lead poisoning at the property, which she said was left in a state of disrepair.

  • July 10, 2024

    DC Circ. Won't Block EPA Methane Rule

    The D.C. Circuit rejected states and industry groups' efforts to block the implementation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's final rule establishing expanded methane emissions control requirements for oil and gas infrastructure.

  • July 10, 2024

    DOI Pledges $120M For Tribal Climate Resiliency Efforts

    The Biden administration said Tuesday that it's making $120 million available to help Native American tribes plan and prepare for climate change threats.

  • July 09, 2024

    Fuel Groups Ask Justices To Revisit Calif. Clean Air Act Waiver

    Fuel producers and industry groups called on the U.S. Supreme Court to review the D.C. Circuit's decision to uphold the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Clean Air Act waiver that allows California to set its own greenhouse gas emissions standards for vehicles and run a zero-emission vehicles program.

Expert Analysis

  • California Adds A Novel Twist To State Suits Against Big Oil

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    California’s suit against Exxon Mobil Corp., one of several state suits that seek to hold oil and gas companies accountable for climate-related harms, is unique both in the magnitude of the alleged claims and its use of a consumer protection statute to seek disgorgement of industry profits, says Julia Stein at UCLA School of Law.

  • Criminal Enforcement Considerations For Gov't Contractors

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    Government contractors increasingly exposed to criminal liability risks should establish programs that enable detection and remediation of employee misconduct, consider voluntary disclosure, and be aware of the potentially disastrous consequences of failing to make a mandatory disclosure where the government concludes it was required, say attorneys at Crowell & Moring.

  • Opinion

    States Should Loosen Law Firm Ownership Restrictions

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    Despite growing buzz, normalized nonlawyer ownership of law firms is a distant prospect, so the legal community should focus first on liberalizing state restrictions on attorney and firm purchases of practices, which would bolster succession planning and improve access to justice, says Michael Di Gennaro at The Law Practice Exchange.

  • How Attorneys Can Reduce Bad Behavior At Deposition

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    To minimize unprofessional behavior by opposing counsel and witnesses, and take charge of the room at deposition, attorneys should lay out some key ground rules at the outset — and be sure to model good behavior themselves, says John Farrell at Fish & Richardson.

  • FERC Rule Is A Big Step Forward For Transmission Planning

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    The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's recent electric transmission system overhaul marks significant progress to ensure the grid can deliver electricity at reasonable prices, with a 20-year planning requirement and other criteria going further than prior attempted reforms, say Tom Millar and Gwendolyn Hicks at Winston & Strawn.

  • Series

    Solving Puzzles Makes Me A Better Lawyer

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    Tackling daily puzzles — like Wordle, KenKen and Connections — has bolstered my intellectual property litigation practice by helping me to exercise different mental skills, acknowledge minor but important details, and build and reinforce good habits, says Roy Wepner at Kaplan Breyer.

  • Series

    After Chevron: Environmental Law May Face Hurdles

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    The U.S. Supreme court's recent ruling overturning Chevron deference could prove to be as influential as the original 1984 decision, with far-reaching implications for U.S. environmental laws, including rendering recently promulgated regulations more vulnerable to challenges, say attorneys at Morgan Lewis.

  • Texas Ethics Opinion Flags Hazards Of Unauthorized Practice

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    The Texas Professional Ethics Committee's recently issued proposed opinion finding that in-house counsel providing legal services to the company's clients constitutes the unauthorized practice of law is a valuable clarification given that a UPL violation — a misdemeanor in most states — carries high stakes, say Hilary Gerzhoy and Julienne Pasichow at HWG.

  • Electrifying Transportation With Public-Private Partnerships

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    Many clean energy goals remain public policy abstractions that face a challenging road to realization — but public-private partnership models could be a valuable tool to electrify the transportation sector, says Michael Blackwell at Husch Blackwell.

  • Navigating The New Rise Of Greenwashing Litigation

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    As greenwashing lawsuits continue to gain momentum with a shift in focus to carbon-neutrality claims, businesses must exercise caution and ensure transparency in their environmental marketing practices, taking cues from recent legal challenges in the airline industry, say attorneys at Baker McKenzie.

  • In Memoriam: The Modern Administrative State

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    On June 28, the modern administrative state, where courts deferred to agency interpretations of ambiguous statutes, died when the U.S. Supreme Court overruled its previous decision in Chevron v. Natural Resources Defense Council — but it is survived by many cases decided under the Chevron framework, say Joseph Schaeffer and Jessica Deyoe at Babst Calland.

  • How High Court Approached Time Limit On Reg Challenges

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    The U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Corner Post v. Federal Reserve Board effectively gives new entities their own personal statute of limitations to challenge rules and regulations, and Justice Brett Kavanaugh's concurrence may portend the court's view that those entities do not need to be directly regulated, say attorneys at Snell & Wilmer.

  • Expect The Unexpected: Contracts For Underground Projects

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    Recent challenges encountered by the Mountain Valley Pipeline project underscore the importance of drafting contracts for underground construction to account for unexpected site conditions, associated risks and compliance with applicable laws, say Jill Jaffe and Brenda Lin at Nossaman.

  • How To Clean Up Your Generative AI-Produced Legal Drafts

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    As law firms increasingly rely on generative artificial intelligence tools to produce legal text, attorneys should be on guard for the overuse of cohesive devices in initial drafts, and consider a few editing pointers to clean up AI’s repetitive and choppy outputs, says Ivy Grey at WordRake.

  • Series

    Boxing Makes Me A Better Lawyer

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    Boxing has influenced my legal work by enabling me to confidently hone the skills I've learned from the sport, like the ability to remain calm under pressure, evaluate an opponent's weaknesses and recognize when to seize an important opportunity, says Kirsten Soto at Clyde & Co.

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