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Taft's environmental attorneys practice in all facets of environmental law, including Superfund defense and negotiation, enforcement defense, cost-recovery for plaintiffs and defendants, criminal environmental defense, environmental insurance and toxic tort litigation, mold and sick building litigation, lawsuits involving environmental problems discovered as a result of real property transfers or mergers and acquisitions, Brownfields redevelopment, defense of claims of occupational exposures, and administrative proceedings before state and federal agencies. Taft's environmental lawyers also are regularly engaged in insurance disputes concerning environmental issues and agricultural issues involving CAFOs and CFOs. The purpose of this newsletter is to provide you with insights from our team that may be of interest to yours.

(317) 713-3520

(317) 713-3552

On July 25, U.S. District Judge Jon E. DeGuilio denied Old Republic Insurance Co.'s motion for summary judgment against Taft client Gary/Chicago International Airport Authority. The judge ruled that the absolute pollution exclusion in 16 policies that the insurer issued to the Authority can't be enforced under Indiana law because it doesn't list any specifically excluded pollutants or contaminants. Taft attorneys Frank Deveau and Melissa Gardner represented Gary/Chicago International Airport Authority in this win. Deveau is quoted in the Law360 article about the case titled "Insurer's Pollution Exclusion Not Enforceable, Judge Says." Read the article here. (Law360 subscription required)
(513) 357-9406

On June 7, the EPA's Office of Pesticide Programs ("OPP") issued two draft Pesticide Registration Notices aimed at combating pesticide resistance: (1) PR Notice 2016-X "Draft Guidance for Pesticide Registrants on Pesticide Resistance Management Labeling"; and (2) PR Notice 2016-XX "Draft Guidance for Herbicide Resistance Management Labeling, Education, Training, and Stewardship." The EPA issued the draft PR Notices because of its concern about pesticides losing their effectiveness as a result of pests developing significant decreases in sensitivity to pesticides. To combat the issue of pesticide resistance and to preserve the utility of pesticides, the EPA is beginning a more widespread effort to combat and slow pesticide resistance.

(317) 713-3562

The U.S. EPA's National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System ("NPDES") program is the cornerstone of Congressional efforts to reduce water pollution from point source discharges. This year marks the 44th anniversary of the 1972 Clean Water Act Amendments, which first established the NPDES program, but after all these years the scope of the program is still a source of constant litigation. One of the most recent and significant lawsuits to address the scope of the NPDES program is Sierra Club v. Virginia Electric and Power Company [d/b/a Dominion Virginia Power], No. 2:15-cv-00112, which is currently pending in federal court in the Eastern District of Virginia. This case and a series of similar recent lawsuits throughout the country have the potential to greatly expand the NPDES program and the type of discharges that must be permitted.

(317) 713-3516

In Ebert v. General Mills, Inc., 823 F.3d 472 (8th Cir. 2016), the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals recently reversed class certification in a case involving alleged environmental contamination. The decision highlights the complexities faced in putative class action toxic tort cases, especially those involving vapor intrusion. Ebert stresses the fact that causation, liability and damages determinations are not only inextricably linked, but also that these concepts often involve highly individualized assessments that may not be suitable for resolution in class actions.

(513) 357-9369

From the personal injury lawsuits spawned by formaldehyde composite wood products used in the construction of the FEMA trailers that temporarily housed refugees after Hurricane Katrina, to the Department of Justice enforcement against Lumber Liquidators for allegedly misrepresenting the formaldehyde content of laminate flooring imported from China, formaldehyde has become one of the EPA's new chemical whipping boys. On July 27, 2016, the EPA issued the pre-publication version of its Final Rule on Formaldehyde Standards for Composite Wood Products. The EPA worked closely with the California Air Resources Board to ensure consistency with CARB's existing requirements for composite wood products.

Indiana Court of Appeals Clarifies Limits on Claims Brought under Two Environmental Statutes  
(317) 713-3520

(317) 713-3552

In Schuchman/Samberg Investments, Inc. v. Hoosier Penn Oil Co. Inc, et al., the Indiana Court of Appeals recently held that a landowner's claim under Indiana's Environmental Legal Action Statute ("ELA"), Ind. Code § 13-30-9-1 et seq., is subject to the six-year statute of limitations applicable to property damage claims and that Indiana's Petroleum Releases Statute ("PRS"), Ind. Code § 13-24-1-1 et seq., does not create a private right of action.

Taft's 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.

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August 2016 Issue
Deveau and Gardner Successfully Represent Client in Insurance Coverage Dispute
EPA Issues New Draft Guidance
Is Groundwater a "Water of the US"?
8th Circuit Class Recertification in Superfund Environmental Contamination Case
EPA Committed to Preserving Formaldehyde Focus
Indiana Court of Appeals Clarifies Limits on Claims

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