Monthly Archives: April 2015

PA Court Declines to Aggregate Separate Compressor Stations

A Pennsylvania Court recently considered whether a genuine issue of material fact exists as to whether the air contamination sources are “adjacent”, thereby rendering a natural gas operators compressor facilities ineligible for GP-5 (minor source) air permits and requiring the natural gas operator to meet heightened (major source) air emission permitting requirements. See, Citizens for… Read More »

Permit Shield Extended to General Permits by Sixth Circuit

In January 2015, the Sixth Circuit held that a defendant’s compliance with the terms of its National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (“NPDES”) general permit would effectively “shield” that defendant from claims filed under the citizen suit enforcement provisions of the Clean Water Act.  Sierra Club v. ICG Hazard. 

OSHA Adds “Upstream Oil & Gas Hazards” to List of High-Emphasis Hazards in Severe Violator Enforcement Program

On February 11, 2015, OSHA Director of Enforcement Programs Thomas Galassi sent a memorandum to all OSHA Regional Directors and State Plan Designees titled “Inclusion of Upstream Oil and Gas Hazards to the High-Emphasis Hazards in the Severe Violator Enforcement Program (SVEP).” The short memorandum states that its purpose is “to authorize the addition of… Read More »

Federal Hydraulic Fracturing Rule Issued; Criticized by NGOs and Challenged by Industry and States

On March 20, 2015, the United States Department of the Interior, Bureau of Land Management (BLM) issued final regulations addressing hydraulic fracturing “as a much-needed complement to existing regulations designed to ensure the environmentally responsible development of oil and gas resources on Federal and Indian lands.” 80 Fed. Reg. 16128 (March 26, 2015) The regulations,… Read More »

Northern Long Eared Bat To Be Designated as Threatened, not Endangered – Litigation Immediately Begins

On April 2, 2015, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) announced that it would be listing the northern long-eared bat as threatened, rather than endangered, as it had originally proposed in October of 2013. The listing gives the bat new protections but does not impose all of the requirements that would have been applicable… Read More »