We are pleased to present you with Tafts Environmental newsletter, a collection of insights from our team to yours. For more information on our environmental practice, please visit www.taftlaw.com.

Is there a subject youd like to see in the next newsletter? Contact the editor here.

EPA Makes Inflation Adjustment to Civil Penalties
By: Chase Dressman

On Jan. 13, EPA promulgated a final rule to adjust the maximum and minimum statutory civil penalty amounts under numerous environmental statutes. The revised penalty levels listed in the third column of the chart in the article will apply to all civil penalties assessed on or after Jan. 13, 2020 for violations that occurred after Nov. 2, 2015 — the date that the Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Improvement Act was signed into law. Consistent with the language of the 2015 Federal Civil Penalties Inflation Adjustment Improvement Act, EPA’s new rule is not subject to notice and public comment, and will immediately become effective on Jan. 13, 2020.

>> Read More

Less Implications for PFAS Under the Final National Defense Authorization Act (2020)
By: Rob Bilott, Frank Deveau and Kimberly DalSanto

On Dec. 20, President Donald Trump signed the National Defense Authorization Act for 2020.1 In addition to creating the Space Force, the legislation includes several provisions meant to address Per- and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS), including PFOA and PFOS. The act:
  • Prohibits the use of firefighting foam containing PFAS after Oct. 1, 2024 at military installations and immediately prohibits use of PFAS-containing firefighting foam in training exercises.
  • Adds PFOA and PFOS, along with other PFAS chemicals such as Gen X, to the Toxics Release Inventory. This addition becomes effective Jan. 1, 2020, and would require any facility that manufactures, processes or uses more than 100 lbs. of PFAS per year to annually report their releases and disposal of PFAS.
  • Requires most public water systems to monitor for PFAS under the Safe Drinking Water Act.

>> Read More

EPA Proposes Three Major Revisions to CCR Rule
By: Scott Alexander and Kristine Gordon

On Dec. 2, 2019, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed revisions to the Coal Combustion Residual Rule (CCR Rule) under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA).1 The proposed rule affects how electric utilities, independent power producers, and the like, dispose of coal combustion residuals (CCR) generated by their operations. The proposed rule makes three major revisions to the existing CCR Rule.

First, the proposed rule sets an Aug. 31, 2020 deadline requiring facilities to stop disposing of CCR and non-CCR waste and start the closure of all unlined impoundments and all surface impoundments that fail the aquifer location standard of 40 C.F.R § 257.101(b)(1). Id. at 65,942. This rule expedites the prior Oct. 31, 2020 deadline. Id.

>> Read More

We encourage you to visit our Environmental Law LinkedIn Showcase page, where additional articles are published.
Tafts Environmental Law Newsletter is used to inform our clients and friends of significant new developments and current issues in environmental law. For more information about Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP, please visit http://www.taftlaw.com.

These materials have been prepared by Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP for informational purposes only and are not legal advice. This information is not intended to create, and receipt of it does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. No person or organization should act upon this information without first seeking professional counsel.

We cannot and do not represent you until our client intake process is completed. Further, we reserve the right to accept or decline representing any person or organization in any matter. Accordingly, please do not send us any confidential information about any matter until you receive a written statement from us advising you that we represent you (an
engagement letter). When you receive an engagement letter from one of our attorneys, you will be our client, and we may exchange confidential information freely. Again, do not send us unsolicited confidential information until you speak with one of our attorneys and get authorization to send that information to us.

Some aspects of this Web site may allow you to register for newsletters, events, functions, or seminars hosted by, sponsored by, or associated with Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP. The transmission or receipt of any information related to registration for any event or service does not create an attorney-client relationship.

Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP's Web site and associated materials may provide links to other websites that may be useful or informative.These links to third party sites or information are not intended, and should not be interpreted by readers, as constituting or implying our endorsement, sponsorship or recommendation of the third party information, products or services found there.

The following statement is required by many states, including Kentucky: "THIS IS AN ADVERTISEMENT."