Clean Power Rule Challenges Will Proceed Sooner or Later, But Its Goal May Already Be Close at Hand






Legal challenges filed almost immediately after President Obama announced the Clean Power Rule may be premature. That is what attorneys for EPA told the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit recently in response to an action brought by West Virginia and several other states. The fundamental issue according to EPA attorneys […]

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Obama Announces Clean Power Plan, Fights to Follow






On August 3, 2015, President Obama announced the finalization of the long-awaited Clean Power Plan, a policy primarily intended to further the commitment to combatting global warming. The Plan focuses on the electric power generating sector of the nation’s economy, which is responsible for approximately 31% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions (primarily carbon dioxide, fluorinated […]

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State of Tennessee Sues EPA and the Corps of Engineers on Waters of the United States Final Rule






Today, the State of Tennessee joined in one of the many lawsuits filed by States challenging the EPA and Corps of Engineers Final Rule that defines of Waters of the United States  under the federal Clean Water Act.   See prior blog post on July 2, 2015.  The federal agencies stated in their Final Rule that […]

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New Rule Defining “Waters of the U.S.” Draws New Battle Lines Between the Federal Government and States






The Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (“Corps”) published their Final Rule defining “waters of the United States” on June 29, 2015.  The rule becomes effective on August 28, 2015. The rule was pre-published on May 27, 2015 by EPA and the Corps (the “Agencies”), and it has already received unprecedented attention. […]

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Supreme Court Halts Implementation of EPA Rule on Mercury Emissions from Electric Power Plants: The Practical Effects Are Debatable






On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court halted further implementation of a U.S. EPA’s regulation limiting mercury and other hazardous air toxic emissions from coal- and oil-fired electric power plants. In a 5-4 decision, the majority held that EPA failed to take costs into account when deciding to regulate power plants under this rule, thereby imposing […]

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EPA Issues Clean Water Rule Defining Waters Of The United States






On Tuesday, May 26, 2015, EPA issued a long-awaited rule defining “Waters of the United States.” The final rule is available as a prepublication version. Elsewhere, on EPA’s Clean Water Rule webpage, there are a number of fact sheets and information intended to explain and support the rule as proposed. EPA apparently found this scope […]

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Five Georgia Environmental Bills to Watch in 2015






Georgia legislature warms up to solar panels, gets protective of coastal marshes, withdraws support for electric cars, and sacrifices LEED certifications in favor of jobs. April 2, 2015 marked final adjournment of the 2015 Georgia legislative session. Upon adjournment, the legislature sends five key environmental bills to Governor Deal for signing. (1) HB 57 – […]

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Corn-Based Ethanol Debate Intensifies – – A Bit






A recent article in USA Today questions whether ethanol’s days are numbered. While that article is written from the perspective of whether the stock of ethanol producing companies is a good investment, it focuses on some of the issues that frame the debate about continued support for ethanol as a fuel addictive. That use stems […]

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Georgia General Assembly Ends Water and Land Conservation Tax Credits






At the end of its recent session, the Georgia General Assembly passed HB 464 by unanimous votes to cap the land conservation tax credit at $30 million for 2016 and then eliminate it altogether at the end of 2016. HB 464 also repeals the tax credits for water conservation facilities and ending groundwater usage, effective […]

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Georgia Governor Expected to Sign Overhaul to Soil and Water Commission (HB 397)






On Friday, March 27, 2015 the Georgia legislature passed HB 397, overhauling the State Soil and Water Conservation Commission (“Commission“). HB 397 is intended to curb the Commission’s independence and streamline its regulations. The bill transforms the Commission from an independent state agency to one within the umbrella and oversight of the Department of Agriculture. […]

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