Trump’s Executive Order Requires Hard Look at National Monument Designations

By Maribeth M. Klein By executive order, President Trump directed the Department of Interior to review national monuments designated since 1996 under the Antiquities Act of 1906. The Antiquities Act grants the President authority to designate “historic landmarks, historic and … Continue reading

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California Supreme Court Invalidates EIR for Coastal Mixed-Use Development

by Richard J. McNeil The California Supreme Court’s recent decision in Banning Ranch Conservancy v. City of Newport Beach, ___ Cal. 4th ___ (2017) (Case No. S227473, Mar. 30, 2017) serves as a cautionary reminder that–as stated by the Court … Continue reading

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Disposal of Contamination = Disposal of Evidence. Be Careful What You Throw Away!

by Mitchell J. Klein In a recent unpublished case, the Superior Court of New Jersey held that the Plaintiff in a CERCLA case had committed spoliation when, during the course of the remedial activity, it disposed of various contaminated materials. … Continue reading

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Should Congress End Agency Deference?

By Stephen Smithson At its core, agency deference – as enshrined in the United States Supreme Court’s decision, Chevron U.S.A. Inc. v. Natural Resources Defense Council, Inc., 467 U.S. 837 (1984) – is both reasonable and necessary. Indeed, in City … Continue reading

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Ninth Circuit Holds that Federal Reserved Water Rights Extend to Groundwater

by L. William Staudenmaier On March 7, 2017, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals issued its decision in Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians v. Coachella Valley Water District, Case No. 15-55896.  In this decision, the Court unequivocally held that … Continue reading

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U.S. Senate Confirms Scott Pruitt as EPA Chief, Signaling Conservative Re-Imagining of EPA’s Role in Society and Government

by John D. Burnside On February 17, 2017, the U.S. Senate confirmed President Trump’s nominee Scott Pruitt as the new administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Senate confirmation followed weeks of partisan and public attacks against Mr. Pruitt’s fitness … Continue reading

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Top Five Issues to Watch in Arizona Water Law

by Karlene Martorana Drought on the Colorado River.  Although the winter snowpack in the Rockies is off to a good start and California has seen heavy rainfall this winter, the drought in the southwest is not over.  One wet season … Continue reading

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Economic Conditions, Not Environmental Regulation, to Shutter Arizona Coal Plant 25 Years Sooner Than Expected

by Patrick J. Paul In a demonstration that not all regulations solve the problems they were intended to, and a testament to the power of market conditions, owners of the controversial Navajo Generating Station (NGS) power plant near Lake Powell … Continue reading

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Arizona Tests for Lead in School Drinking Water Reveal Elevated Levels

by Patrick J. Paul The Arizona Department of Environmental Quality (ADEQ) announced at the end of January that it would commence a statewide screening program for the presence of lead in school drinking water. The agency declared that its initiative … Continue reading

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What’s Old Is New Again: Expedited Review of Energy Infrastructure Projects Under Trump’s Executive Order

by J. Matthew Derstine While the two Presidential Memoranda expediting review and approval of the Keystone XL and Dakota Access pipelines grabbed much recent attention, an Executive Order issued the same day could have a broader impact by expediting the … Continue reading

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