EHS Law Insights

Comment and analysis by Reed Smith lawyers on the latest developments in Environmental Health & Safety

The California Occupational Safety and Health Appeals Board (Board) is soliciting public comments on proposed revisions to its Rules of Practice and Procedure. The three-member Board hears appeals from public- and private-sector employers regarding citations issued by the California Division of Occupational Safety and Health (DOSH) and is authorized to adopt procedural rules related to these appeals. If adopted, the proposals would primarily affect the way appeals are docketed and discovery is conducted during proceedings…
This blog post provides a brief summary on the commencement of the Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting regime which has introduced mandatory corporate reporting obligations for relevant UK companies. Introduced by the Companies (Directors’ Report) and Limited Liability Partnerships (Energy and Carbon Report) Regulations 2018, the SECR regime is a complex and comprehensive new corporate reporting regime that requires relevant UK organisations to report on their annual energy use, greenhouse gas emissions, energy efficiency measures and other associated information.…
This blog post provides a brief commentary on the transboundary movement of waste case of Conti 11 v. the Land of Lower Saxony, Germany (Case C689-17). The law on the international shipment of waste is of increasing importance to many global businesses. The Reed Smith Environmental, Health & Safety team regularly handles cases on this subject involving sectors such as oil and gas, mining, consumer electronics, ship recycling and offshore renewables, as well as many others. Case law in…
Following last year’s indictments of Arkema Inc. (Arkema) CEO Richard Rowe and plant manager Leslie Comardelle, a Texas grand jury recently indicted Mike Keough, Arkema’s Vice President of Logistics, in connection with allegations that Arkema failed to provide adequate emergency response information to response officials. Along with this indictment, recent charges against Intercontinental Terminals Company and the hiring of several additional prosecutors reflects Harris County District Attorney’s increased focus on prosecuting environmental and safety crimes.…
The Ministry of Ecology and Environment, in its first formal publication on the subject of the Chinese emissions trading scheme since taking over the responsibility for its development from the National Development and Reform Commission, published draft ‘Interim Regulations’ in April 2019 setting out the overarching legislative framework proposed for the scheme. Whilst this publication is very welcome and long-overdue, its sparsity highlights how much work still remains to be carried out and publicised before…
The UK government is currently consulting on the future policy options for the regulation and pricing of carbon emissions once the UK has left the EU.  The government’s preferred option is to establish a UK-only emissions trading scheme (UK ETS) and to secure a formal link with the EU ETS in order to have renewed access to the EU carbon market. Several alternative options have also been tabled by the government in recognition that establishing…
The ICAO CORSIA initiative has commenced monitoring, reporting and verification obligations imposed on aircraft operators with effect from 1 January 2019. Data collected will form the baseline to determine subsequent offsetting requirements. Aircraft operators attributed to a country likely to be participating in the voluntary compliance phase from 2021 to 2023 should also take note of the various deadlines for compliance and monitor for updates from the ICAO Council on the offset credits that would…
The California Air Resources Board (CARB) intends to expand its existing Ocean-Going Vessels At-Berth Regulation (the Regulation) in order to reduce further air emissions from ships docked in California. Proposed changes include: Increasing the number of ports and facilities subject to the Regulation; Expanding the types of vessels covered by the Regulation; and Changing the threshold for when emission control requirements are triggered.…
California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment’s (OEHHA) announced on March 15, 2019, that it is collecting public comments regarding the inclusion of cannabis on the Proposition 65 list of substances known to cause birth defects. Such a finding by OEHHA would require those in the California cannabis industry to change their warning labels, informing users of the risk of birth defects. One of the many challenges facing the cannabis industry is ensuring compliance with…
Clean Air Council v. Department of Environmental Protection and Sunoco Partners Marketing & Terminals, L.P., EHB Dkt. No. 2016073L (Adjudication Jan. 9, 2019) On January 9, 2019, the Pennsylvania Environmental Hearing Board issued its adjudication in an appeal by Clean Air Council of a plan approval issued to Sunoco Partners Marketing & Terminals, L.P. The Board ultimately remanded the plan approval to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) for further consideration. The Board’s discussion of why…