Environmental Law Post

Environmental Law Post

Category Archives: Legislation

Subscribe to Legislation RSS Feed

Significant Changes Proposed for NYSDEC’s SEQRA Regulations

Posted in Legislation
Four years after beginning the process, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (“NYSDEC”) issued its proposed amendments to the New York State Environmental Quality Review Act (“SEQRA”) regulations (“SEQRA Regulations”). According to NYSDEC, the “principal purpose of the amendments is to streamline the SEQR[A] process without sacrificing meaningful environmental review.” For many, the… Continue Reading

New York’s Clean Energy Standard and its Impact on the State’s Energy Portfolio

Posted in Legislation
The New York State Public Service Commission (“PSC”) recently issued an order that will shape New York’s energy portfolio for years to come. The Clean Energy Standard (“CES”), issued and effective August 1, 2016, is a bold initiative that mandates renewable energy supply 50 percent of the State’s electricity needs by 2030. New York seeks… Continue Reading

Maximum Civil Penalties for Environmental Violations Set to Dramatically Increase

Posted in Legislation
Through an interim final rule effective August 1, 2016, the U. S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) is increasing the maximum daily penalties it may assess for environmental violations that occurred any time after November 2, 2015. Any violation of an environmental statute enforced by the EPA, i.e., Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act, TSCA, RCRA,… Continue Reading

Toxic Substances Control Act Reform Passes with Bipartisan Support

Posted in Legislation
Exciting and expected news announced from the White House this week: The Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act, which provides for common-sense amendments to the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), was signed into law by President Barack Obama after bipartisan support in both houses of Congress. Typically a divisive area of… Continue Reading

Legislation to Reset Statute of Limitations for Toxic Exposure Claims in New York

Posted in Legislation
New York State Senator Kathleen Marchione, a Republican from New York’s 43rd Senate District, introduced the “Hoosick Falls” bill ostensibly in response to her constituents’ ongoing water supply contamination concerns. This legislation, however, is not a rifle shot to address the Hoosick Falls situation. Rather, it has significant, long-term Statewide implications for many companies and… Continue Reading

Supreme Court Stays Clean Power Plan

Posted in Legislation
We previously reported on the Obama administration’s release of the final version of the Clean Power Plan (“Plan”), a set of Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations designed to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions from electric power generating plants. Under the Plan, states are responsible for developing individualized compliance policies by September 2016, with the ultimate… Continue Reading

Concerns Over Retroactive Changes to Net Metering Lead to Proposed Federal Regulation

Posted in Energy, Legislation
The debate over the future of net metering and the proper valuation of distributed energy resources has reached Congress. In the wake of a debacle over retroactive changes to net metering rules in his home state of Nevada, Senator Harry Reid (with Senator Angus King of Maine) recently proposed legislation on the subject. The proposal,… Continue Reading

New York Rolls Out $5 Billion Clean Energy Fund

Posted in Legislation
In support of its commitment to increase the use of renewable energy resources to 50% by the year 2030, New York is creating a $5 billion Clean Energy Fund. As reported in Fortune Magazine, New York’s commitment to spend $5 billion over 10 years on infrastructure and clean energy related projects is a significant development,… Continue Reading

Cuomo’s 2016 State of State Address Sets Stage for Banner Year in Clean Energy Sector

Posted in Legislation
This week New York Governor Andrew Cuomo released a number of policy proposals aimed at New York’s clean energy sector in conjunction with his annual State of the State address. Fundamentally, the Governor proposes that New York “become an international capital for clean and green energy products.” Consistent with the State’s clean energy policies, the… Continue Reading

New York Expresses Strong Support for Obama’s Clean Power Plan

Posted in Legislation
Earlier this month, the Obama administration released its final Clean Power Plan (“Plan”), a comprehensive set of rules and standards geared toward decreasing carbon emissions from coal- and gas-fired power plants and combatting global warming. The Clean Power Plan focuses on the nation’s largest carbon emitter, the electricity sector, which in 2013 accounted for an… Continue Reading

New York Brownfield Cleanup Program Extender Unexpectedly Vetoed, Leaving the Program Adrift

Posted in Brownfield, Legislation
In a veto message dated December 29, 2014, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo vetoed legislation passed by both houses of New York’s legislature earlier this summer that would have extended New York’s very successful Brownfield Cleanup Program (BCP) through March 31, 2017. By vetoing this legislation, the December 31, 2015, sunset for the Program remains… Continue Reading

NYS Brownfield Cleanup Tax Credit Program To Be Extended

Posted in Legislation
At the conclusion of its annual 2013-14 session, the New York State Legislature passed an extender (S. 7878) to the New York State Brownfields Cleanup Program (BCP) tax credits. The BCP tax credits, which were first enacted into law in 2003, incentivize remediation and redevelopment of contaminated sites by providing credits against New York State… Continue Reading

Fracking Alert: Home Rule Prevails In New York’s Highest Court

Posted in Fracking, Legislation
On Monday, New York’s Court of Appeals, its highest court, upheld the power of municipalities to prohibit hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) within their boundaries. The case, previously discussed here, concerned efforts by two towns to ban fracking within their boundaries after several town residents signed oil and gas leases allowing for exploration and extraction on their… Continue Reading

What does the Supreme Court’s UARG decision mean for you?

Posted in Legislation
In a highly anticipated decision last week, the Supreme Court struck down a portion of EPA’s so-called Tailoring Rule for greenhouse gas emissions.  By its Tailoring Rule, EPA had attempted to regulate certain stationary sources under the Clean Air Act’s Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) and Title V permitting programs, based solely on those sources… Continue Reading