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Judges Appear To Back Stricter Ozone NAAQS, Doubt 'Background' Factor

Appellate judges at Dec. 18 oral argument appeared to back the Obama EPA's 2015 decision to tighten its primary health-based ozone air standard and to doubt claims that the agency should have assessed “background” ozone levels to set a weaker limit, but they also faulted EPA for making the secondary environment-based standard the same.

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Court Urged To Quickly Scrap EPA Extension Of Ash Site Closure Delays

Environmentalists are asking a federal appeals court to quickly scrap EPA's delay of facility closure deadlines in the Obama-era waste disposal rule for coal ash sites, claiming the court's prior ruling that the overall disposal rule is unlawfully weak shows the delay is illegal and countering EPA's bid to have nine months to reconsider the policy.

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Arguments in key bankruptcy case postponed until January

The case “reinforces the attention of both PRPs and agencies on bankruptcy risks and financial assurance," one industry attorney says.

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Judge weighs vacatur of Oregon temperature TMDLs

A federal judge is agreeing with environmentalists that the total maximum daily loads (TMDLs) are severely flawed but is considering a temporary stay of a vacatur to provide regulatory certainty.

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Scientists tout MATS' health benefits ahead of EPA rule review

Harvard University researchers are touting the benefits of EPA's utility air toxics rule ahead of the agency's pending proposal that could seek to weaken the rule's public health protections.

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EPA Seeks Remand Of Ash Rule Changes To Address Adverse Court Ruling

EPA is asking a federal appeals court to remand without vacatur its contested revisions to an Obama-era coal ash disposal rule so the agency can address the court's August ruling finding the original regulation to be unlawfully weak, warning that vacating the rule changes would create an “impossible” situation for regulated facilities.

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Appeal Of CWA Groundwater Liability Ruling Will Test Circuit Court 'Split'

Environmentalists are appealing a district court's rejection of their suit claiming the Clean Water Act (CWA) extends to liability for groundwater-borne pollution that reaches nearby surface waters, posing a new test on whether appellate courts are split on the liability -- a division at the center of a potential Supreme Court case.

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Court Slated To Hear Major Suit Highlighting Bankruptcy Risks At Cleanups

A federal bankruptcy court is slated to hear arguments Dec. 18 on whether corporate parents fraudulently transferred assets as a way to bankrupt subsidiaries and avoid environmental liability at hazardous waste sites in a high-profile case that is expected to highlight the risks that bankruptcy poses to major Superfund cleanups.

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Environmentalists Threaten New Suit To Force CWA Spill Prevention Rule

Environmentalists are again threatening to sue EPA over its failure to enact a Clean Water Act (CWA) spill prevention rule that the Obama administration began work on but which was then slated to be scrapped under former Administrator Scott Pruitt, arguing that the agency had a non-discretionary duty to enact such a regulation by 1992.

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D.C. Circuit Poised To Hear Suit Over EPA's Tightening Of Ozone NAAQS

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit is set to hear long-delayed oral argument Dec. 18 in consolidated litigation challenging the Obama EPA's decision to tighten the ozone national ambient air quality standard (NAAQS), a revision that the agency's air chief has criticized but ultimately decided to uphold and defend in court.

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