Related insights: Environmental Regulation, Disputes and Litigation

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Some States Are Opposed to EPA’s COVID-19 Blanket Enforcement Policy

May 27 2020
On March 23, 2020, on behalf of its members and U.S. industry, the American Petroleum Institute sent a letter to the EPA requesting a temporary waiver of non-essential compliance obligations, including recordkeeping, training or other non-safety critical requirements. The letter asked that Federal and State agencies consider using enforcement discretion to provide temporary relief, waivers or revised compliance timeframes when compliance activities become infeasible due to travel restrictions and COVID-19 stay home/shelter in place orders.
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Womble Bond Dickinson Attorney Jimmy Kirkland Discusses Trends and Risks in the Hemp Industry with The Environmental Bankers Association

May 14 2020
Attorney Jimmy Kirkland gave a presentation on “HEMP: New Opportunities & New Risks” to members of the Environmental Bankers Association’s Risk Management Committee. Kirkland’s presentation discussed the history of hemp production, its many uses and the regulatory requirements. Lenders, consultants, and gatekeepers were informed of both the risks and opportunities associated with this new agricultural commodity, and issues for collateral protection and compliance with banking laws were brought to light.
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The Benefits, Concerns and Considerations of Remote Depositions and Mediations in the COVID-19 Climate

Apr 28 2020
Remote depositions and mediations have been taking place for more than 20 years. As videoconferencing tools have improved (think Webex, Zoom, etc.), business litigators and their client have become increasingly comfortable conducting such sessions in a remote setting. The COVID-19 crisis has accelerated the pace of conducting depositions and mediations via videoconference. Sessions that just a few weeks ago may have been conducted in person now must be conducted remotely due to public health concerns and related stay-at-home orders.
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49 Lawyers and 18 Practice Areas Recognized in Chambers USA 2020

Apr 23 2020
Womble Bond Dickinson (US) LLP is pleased to announce that 49 attorneys and 18 state-level practice areas have been ranked in the 2020 edition of Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business. This includes three attorneys who have been recognized in Chambers’ High Net Worth (HNW) Guide. Six practices earned Band 1 rankings, and 11 lawyers received one or more Band 1 rankings.
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SCOTUS Muddies All The Waters

Apr 23 2020
In a decision which seems likely to inject yet more uncertainty into whether the introduction of pollutants to surface waters via groundwater triggers the permitting requirements of the Clean Water Act (“CWA”), a majority of United States Supreme Court Justices have determined that the CWA “requires a permit when there is a direct discharge from a point source into navigable waters or when there is the functional equivalent of a direct discharge.”
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EPA Relaxes TSCA Reporting Requirements

Apr 20 2020
In a welcome course change, the EPA has announced three exemptions to a potentially costly reporting program for manufacturers. The Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) Title VI Fee Rule identifies 20 “high priority chemicals” and – until last week – required manufacturers and importers of each chemical, as well as domestic fabricators and importers of finished goods containing any of these substances in the past five years, to self-report for the purpose of sharing in the $1.3 million the EPA is charging to administer the safe use of the chemical.
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Be Prepared for OSHA’s COVID-19 Interim Enforcement Response Plan

Apr 17 2020
On April 13, 2020, OSHA issued its Interim Enforcement Response Plan for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19). Employers should pay close attention to this interim guidance because it includes important changes to enforcement guidelines and record-keeping requirements. High-risk employers in the medical and manufacturing sectors face especially important rule changes and enforcement risks. Employers in all sectors should make sure their written policies reflect OSHA’s most up-to-date changes.