Half of World’s Assets under Net Zero Asset Management

On Tuesday, July 6, 2021, 41 fund management firms announced their joining of the Net Zero Asset Managers initiative, an initiative by asset management firms to lower the carbon footprint of their clients’ portfolios and develop net-zero investment products.

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Texas Receives Coal Ash Rule Approval from EPA

On Monday, June 28, 2021, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality’s (TCEQ) request for delegated permit authority over coal ash disposal under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA).1

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Congress Rescinds Trump-Era Methane “Policy Rule”

On June 25, 2021, the U.S. House of Representatives voted to rescind a Trump-era methane rule using its Congressional Review Act (CRA) authority, which includes special procedures that allow Congress and the President to rescind certain rules promulgated during a prior administration, within defined time limits. The Senate passed the CRA resolution disapproving the rule on April 28, 2021. The measure garnered bipartisan support in both chambers. Congress presented the resolution to President Biden, who signed it on June 30, 2021.

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Western District of Virginia Dismisses Challenge to Trump-Era NEPA Rule as Unripe

On June 21, 2021, the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Virginia dismissed a lawsuit by environmental groups challenging a Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) July 2020 rule changing how agencies undertake National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) reviews. Filed in June 2020, Wild Virginia et al. v. Council on Environmental Quality et al. alleged that CEQ’s rule violated NEPA and the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) and asked that the rule be vacated. Because other federal agencies have not yet drafted the procedures implementing the rule and might never do so under the Biden administration, the court concluded that the challenge was not ripe.

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Environmental Justice Pollution Cleanup Act to Be Reintroduced

On June 11, 2021, U.S. Senator Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Representative A. Donald McEachin (D-VA) announced the reintroduction of the Environmental Justice Pollution Cleanup Act of 2021 – a bill first introduced in 2020, which would provide for significant investment in environmental justice communities to address the health and environmental effects of pollution. This marks the latest of a series of proposed legislation addressing environmental justice. In March 2021, we reported on the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, which allocated $100 million in funding to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, for programs, including the retrofitting or replacement of diesel engines or equipment, cleanup and redevelopment of brownfields sites, and technical assistance for small community water systems.

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EPA Adds Three Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) to the Toxics Release Inventory

On June 3, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published in the Federal Register a rule adding three more per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) to the list of chemicals requiring toxic chemicals release reporting under the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act and the Pollution Prevention Act, that is, Toxics Release Inventory (TRI).  The PFAS added are perfluorooctyl iodide, potassium perfluorooctanoate and silver(I) perfluorooctanoate, which must be included in TRI reports due July 1, 2022.

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TSA Issues Directive to Enhance Pipeline Cybersecurity

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Transportation Security Administration (“TSA”) issued a Security Directive, “Enhancing Pipeline Cybersecurity” on May 28, laying out new cybersecurity requirements for operators of liquids and natural gas pipelines and LNG facilities designated as critical infrastructure. (more…)

FERC Climate Change Concerns to Delay Five Pending Natural Gas Pipeline Projects

On May 27, 2021, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) indicated that it would increase the timeline for making a decision on five pending applications for Natural Gas Act (NGA) Section 7 certificates of public convenience and necessity when it issued notices of intent to prepare an environmental impact statement (EIS) to each of the project sponsors. Each of the applications concern pipeline expansion projects that were the subject of environmental assessments (EAs) performed by FERC staff. The notices state that the new EISs will tier off of the existing EAs and will be limited in scope to assisting FERC in its consideration of the subject projects’ contribution to climate change in the FERC decision-making process.

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Meet The Team

<a target=‘_blank’ href="https://www.sidley.com/en/people/b/boxerman-samuel-b">Samuel B. Boxerman</a>

Samuel B. Boxerman

Washington, D.C.
<a target=‘_blank’ href="https://www.sidley.com/en/people/b/brown-keturah-a">Keturah A. Brown</a>

Keturah A. Brown

Washington, D.C.
<a target=‘_blank’ href="https://www.sidley.com/en/people/d/dickson-gerbas-grace">Grace Dickson Gerbas</a>

Grace Dickson Gerbas

Dallas
<a target=‘_blank’ href="https://www.sidley.com/en/people/h/healey-terence-t">Terence T. Healey</a>

Terence T. Healey

Boston
<a target=‘_blank’ href="https://www.sidley.com/en/people/i/irvin-kenneth-w">Kenneth W. Irvin</a>

Kenneth W. Irvin

Washington, D.C.
<a target=‘_blank’ href="https://www.sidley.com/en/people/p/polito-christopher-j">Christopher J. Polito</a>

Christopher J. Polito

Washington, D.C.
<a target=‘_blank’ href="https://www.sidley.com/en/people/k/khan-casey">Casey Khan</a>

Casey Khan

Houston
<a target=‘_blank’ href="https://www.sidley.com/en/people/l/lisak-michael-l">Michael L. Lisak</a>

Michael L. Lisak

Chicago
<a target=‘_blank’ href="https://www.sidley.com/en/people/b/bolen-brittany-a">Brittany A. Bolen</a>

Brittany A. Bolen

Washington, D.C.
<a target=‘_blank’ href="https://www.sidley.com/en/people/f/flyer-aaron-l">Aaron L. Flyer</a>

Aaron L. Flyer

Washington, D.C.
<a target=‘_blank’ href="https://www.sidley.com/en/people/h/hildebrandt-brooklyn">Brooklyn Hildebrandt</a>

Brooklyn Hildebrandt

Los Angeles
<a target=‘_blank’ href="https://www.sidley.com/en/people/n/noelliste-nicole-e">Nicole E. Noëlliste</a>

Nicole E. Noëlliste

Washington, D.C.
<a target=‘_blank’ href="https://www.sidley.com/en/people/p/posen-hannah">Hannah Posen</a>

Hannah Posen

Chicago
<a target=‘_blank’ href="https://www.sidley.com/en/people/r/raffetto-jack-c">Jack Raffetto</a>

Jack Raffetto

Washington, D.C.

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