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Litigation

Mediator In TVA Air Act Case Unable To Stave Off Court Ruling

The chief mediator for the U. S. Court of Appeals for the 11th Circuit has abandoned his attempt to craft a settlement in a high-profile lawsuit where the government sued the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) for alleged Clean Air Act violations.

The collapse of the effort leaves little choice but for the court to issue what could be a landmark ruling on the legitimacy of EPA's enforcement actions against the utility industry for alleged violations of new source review rules.

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Legal Battle Over Sulfuric Mist May Prompt Worker Safety Lawsuits

The fertilizer industry is locked in a legal battle with the federal government over the listing of a manufacturing byproduct as a likely carcinogen, which legal experts say could expose the industry to potentially enormous worker safety liability claims. Government agencies and scientists claim that tens of thousands of American workers are exposed each year to sulfuric mist, which is created during a variety of product manufacturing processes.

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Activists Sue Over Prop 65 Chemical Threshold

A pair of environmental and consumer groups with a history of suing companies under California's toxics labeling law, Proposition 65, has sued the state's health hazard assessment office to overturn a recently-adopted reproductive toxicity exposure limit for cadmium. The lawsuit may affect dozens of pending legal proceedings over cadmium exposure, as well as future litigation.

The activists contend the proposed cadmium threshold is much too high and that the compound is a serious danger to human health in very small doses.

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Alaska Appeals Case Buoying EPA Permit Authority To Supreme Court

Alaska is vowing to mount a Supreme Court challenge to a recent federal court ruling affirming EPA's authority to second-guess decisions by state permit authorities, after the court backed an EPA finding that Alaska state officials wrongly failed to require installation of state-of-the-art pollution control technologies at a new facility.

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Court Confirms EPA Authority To Object To State Emissions Decisions

A recent ruling by a federal appeals court has provided an unusual precedent affirming EPA's authority to second guess permitting decisions by state regulators, if the agency believes the state is improperly failing to require installation of state-of-the-art pollution control technologies on a new facility, according to legal experts.

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Appeals Court Backs Ethanol-Friendly Air Act Interpretation

A recent federal appeals court decision has backed an EPA interpretation of Clean Air Act rules that could provide a long-term benefit to companies seeking to produce ethanol from municipal waste, by lessening the need under some circumstances for facilities to install state-of-the-art pollution control technologies.

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Mexican Truck Suit's Pollution Debate Rattles Trucking Industry

A closely watched air quality lawsuit challenging Mexican-based trucks unfettered access to U.S. highways under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) is splitting the trucking industry, with one key organization backing the U.S. government's decision not to study the environmental impacts of the foreign vehicles.

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West Virginia High Court Backs EPA Right To Set Water TMDLs

The West Virginia Supreme Court has overturned a state circuit decision that upheld the state's authority to review and even reject controversial water standards set by EPA, referred to as total maximum daily loads (TMDLs).

Industry lawyers had praised the circuit court decision, saying that it may have implications in other states where EPA is developing TMDLs. These sources explain that other states may challenge EPA's TMDLs in court, and although the West Virginia decision is not binding on other state courts, judges may look to this case for guidance.

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