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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.

(513) 357-9406

On Sept. 20, the Eastern District of California ruled in the case of U.S. v. Sterling Centrecorp Inc., Case No. 2:08-cv-02556-MCE-JFM (E.D. Cal. Sept. 20, 2016) that the government's forcible closure of a California gold mine during World War II did not make the government liable as an "operator" under CERCLA. The court's opinion demonstrates the required showing that a party must make before establishing "operator" liability under CERCLA.

Who Pays When the Other Party Delays? "Loss of Use" Damages and the Recent Michigan Decision Newell Brands, Inc. v. Kirsch Lofts, LLC
(317) 713-9459

When the responsible party and site owner differ, remediation projects can languish at times because the two parties' interests are not aligned. When that occurs, the site owner may want to know what legal remedies are available when the responsible party refuses to budge, especially when it seems the responsible party is utilizing dilatory tactics to delay the remediation.

A recent opinion from the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Michigan held that to the extent there is a remedy for this kind of delay, it is not found under the state's Access Statute.

Who Will Pay to Clean Up Indiana's Polluted Deep Aquifers?  
Bill Wagner
(317) 713-3614

Two recent comments about future enforcement actions from William Brighton, the assistant chief of the Environmental Enforcement Section for the U.S. Department of Justice, concerned me. First, he said the Justice Department and the Environmental Protection Agency would no longer be reluctant to use the Superfund program to tackle large-scale contaminated sites, that is, the ones that cost a billion dollars or more to remediate. Second, with fewer taxpayer dollars to fund the program, the responsible parties left standing would have to bear the costs for others that have either gone out of business or filed for bankruptcy.

EPA has proposed and listed several new Superfund sites in Indiana in the last three years involving large-scale contamination to deep aquifers that serve as sources for drinking water.

(513) 357-9406

EPA and Albaugh, LLC recently reached a $112,684 settlement to resolve allegations that Albaugh violated the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act ("FIFRA") by distributing pesticides that were misbranded and contained ingredients that did not match the products' confidential statements of formulation. The significant penalty underscores EPA's continued focus on pursuing pesticide registrants for violations of FIFRA - with a particular emphasis on noncompliant pesticide labels. Furthermore, the fact that the alleged violations were the result of a 2013 inspection of Albaugh's St. Joseph, Missouri facility is a reminder to regulated entities that enforcement may occur years after a violation is discovered. Accordingly, maintaining relevant documentation and institutional knowledge after an inspection can be critical for responding to or defending a future enforcement 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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October 2016 Issue
Government's War-Time Closure of Gold Mine Insufficient to Establish "Operator" Liability Under CERCLA
Who Pays When the Other Party Delays?
Who Will Pay to Clean Up Indiana's Deep Polluted Aquifers?
EPA Region 7 Reaches $112,684 Settlement with Albaugh, LLC

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