Monthly Archives: December 2015

Perspectives on COP21 and Future Coal Production

Reporting on the historic climate deal in Paris as a result of the COP21 climate change conference, the Guardian’s headline proclaimed “Paris climate deal: nearly 200 nations sign in [sic] end of fossil fuel era.” http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/dec/12/paris-climate-deal-200-nations-sign-finish-fossil-fuel-era. The future of coal production domestically and internationally is an important topic to many readers of this blog. Therefore,… Read More »

PA Governor’s Pipeline Infrastructure Report – Hoping for the Best

A significant issue impacting the pricing and movement of shale gas in Pennsylvania is the lack of sufficient pipeline capacity to move the gas to markets, primarily those on the East Coast. It is reported that nearly 2000 unconventional wells remain shut in due to the inability to move the gas to a point of… Read More »

USEPA Social Media Campaign in Support of WOTUS Rule Deemed Unlawful

In a letter dated December 14, 2015, from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) to Senator James Inhofe, Chairman of the Committee on Environment and Public Works, the GAO takes the social media campaign adopted by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) in support of its Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule to task.… Read More »

Proposal to Eliminate CSO Discharges in the Great Lakes Region Excluded from Final 2016 Spending Package

In October, a proposed provision for the U.S. Senate’s Fiscal Year 2016 (“FY16”) spending package for the Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) received national attention, as Section 428 of the proposal sought to amend the Clean Water Act by prohibiting both direct and indirect combined sewer overflow (“CSO”) discharges to the Great Lakes watershed. The National… Read More »

Streamlining the Federal Permitting Process for Major Energy and Infrastructure Project

On January 6, 2015, Representative Rodney Davis (R-Ill.) introduced H.R. 22 – Surface Transportation, Reauthorization, and Reform Act of 2015 (“Act”). H.R. Res. 22, 114th Cong. (2015) (enacted). The purpose of this Act, also known as “Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act” or “FAST Act,” is to “authorize funds for Federal-aid highways, highway safety programs, and… Read More »

Ohio Proposes Modification to Clean Water Act §401 Water Quality Certification

Ohio EPA proposed a modification to its Clean Water Act (CWA) §401 water quality certifications for Nationwide general permits (NWPs) on November 16, 2015. If finalized as proposed, longer lead times for CWA §404 permitting activities in high quality streams or undesignated streams that flow into high quality streams could result in project delays. Comments… Read More »

Does Court of Appeals have Jurisdiction to Review the Clean Water Rule? Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals to Hear Arguments Tomorrow

The United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit will hear oral arguments tomorrow, December 8, 2015, on the limited issue of whether jurisdiction to review EPA’s Clean Water Rule (“the Rule”) lies exclusively with the courts of appeals, pursuant to Section 509(b)(1) of the Clean Water Act (“CWA”), 33 U.S.C. §1369(b)(1), or whether… Read More »

Ethane Storage Hub – Economic Development Opportunities

On December 2, 2015 Congressman McKinley gained unanimous agreement from the House to amend House Resolution 8 to include an Ethane Storage Study. H.R. 8, was introduced by Congressman Upton (MI-R) and is titled, “North American Energy Security and Infrastructure Act of 2015”. This resolution discusses the need to modernize energy infrastructure, build a 21st… Read More »

The Rebirth of Chevron Deference

On November 10, 2015, Assistant Attorney General John C. Cruden spoke at the D.C. Bar’s Administrative Law and Agency Practice Committee’s Harold Leventhal Lecture on the enduring nature of the Chevron Doctrine. See Remarks, http://www.justice.gov/opa/speech/assistant-attorney-general-john-c-cruden-delivers-remarks-enduring-nature-chevron. Assistant Attorney General Cruden’s remarks are timely, as his main focus was on the use of Chevron deference from an… Read More »