Category Archives: Water Rights

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 »

Proposal to Eliminate CSO Discharges in the Great Lakes Region

Municipalities, public service districts and other operators of publicly-owned treatment works (“POTWs”) are closely monitoring a controversial and ill conceived provision in U.S. Senate’s Fiscal Year 2016 spending package for the Environmental Protection Agency. Section 428 of the spending package seeks to amend the Clean Water Act (“CWA”) by prohibiting both direct and indirect combined… Read More »

USEPA Enjoined From Enforcing New WOTUS Rule

Following a decision by a district court in North Dakota to stay the effectiveness of USEPA’s new rules re-defining the “waters of the United States” in thirteen states – the United States Circuit Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit has now issued a stay effective nationwide, blocking implementation of the rule by USEPA and… Read More »

Clean Water Act – Jurisdictional Decisions Are Now in Murky Water

In the wake of the revised definition of “waters of the United States” under the Clean Water Act, the question of jurisdiction has transformed from a boring exercise of intellectual curiosity into an all-out brawl between the United States Circuits.  Before the expected battle over the revised definition itself has even begun in earnest, one… Read More »

Proposal to Revise Aluminum and Selenium Water Quality Criteria

The West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection’s (“WVDEP”) proposed rule revisions for consideration during the 2016 regular legislative session are now available on the WVDEP website, including long-awaited revisions being proposed to the state’s existing aluminum and selenium water quality criteria. The state’s water quality standards rule, 47 C.S.R., Series 2, is proposed to be… Read More »

Waters of the United States – D.C. Circuit May 15, 2015 Home Builders II Opinion

Persistence is a good trait in the arena of appellate advocacy, but sometimes it is difficult to know when to keep pushing or when to stop.  It may be that a signal was sent in the concurrence written by Senior Circuit Judge Silberman, with whom Senior Circuit Judge Sentelle joined, to keep pushing.  Judge Silberman… Read More »

EPA Proposes Zero Discharge Rule for Hydraulic Fracturing Wastewater

On April 7, 2015, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued proposed regulations which would create pretreatment standards of performance for existing and new sources of wastewater from hydraulic fracturing operations. EPA is proposing to establish a “zero discharge” effluent limitation which would continue the current industry practice of not discharging wastewater from unconventional… Read More »

Permit Shield Extended to General Permits by Sixth Circuit

In January 2015, the Sixth Circuit held that a defendant’s compliance with the terms of its National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (“NPDES”) general permit would effectively “shield” that defendant from claims filed under the citizen suit enforcement provisions of the Clean Water Act.  Sierra Club v. ICG Hazard. 

ORSANCO Notice of Public Hearing

The Ohio River Valley Water Sanitation Commission will hold a public hearing on April 14, 2015, in part to solicit comments on changing the prohibition of mixing zones for bioaccumulative chemicals of concern (BCCs), or in the alternative, eliminating it altogether. The hearing will be held at the Holiday Inn Cincinnati Airport, 1717 Airport Exchange… Read More »