Category

Climate change
Does a particular green policy create more jobs than it destroys? A policy is green if it lowers our use of resources and/or environmental impact.  If a green policy is also a net creator of jobs, everyone should agree that it is a good policy. It should be implemented.  End of story.  Green policies which...
Read More
Rector and Visitors of the University of Virginia v. Cuccinelli (Va. Mar. 11, 2011): The Virginia Supreme Court agreed to consider the Virginia Attorney General’s request for documents concerning the so- called climategate controversy concerning grant applications of a former University of Virginia climate change scientist. In May 2010, the University filed a lawsuit objecting to...
Read More
Connecticut v. American Electric Power (June 20, 2011) In an 8-0 opinion, the U.S. Supreme Court held that federal common law nuisance claims cannot be brought against utilities for their greenhouse gas emissions given that the Clean Air Act and EPA regulations displace federal common law in this area. The lawsuit alleged that under common...
Read More
The recent line of climate change cases presents the question of whether climate change is sufficiently unique to enjoy immunity from tort law. It would seem odd to think that it is. The rules of tort are well established, and courts have historically applied these rules to fill in the gaps in federal environmental legislation....
Read More
When climate legislation died last summer in Congress, one cause was the powerful drumbeat of claims that the bill would bring economic disaster. The legislation would amount to a massive tax hike, devastating an already crippled economy and throwing more people out of work, charged Senator James Inhofe (R-Ok) and Glenn Beck. It would be...
Read More
The Supreme Court has granted cert in American Electric Power v. Connecticut, the federal common law nuisance case brought by several northeastern states against the electric power injury for damages from climate change. The petition argued that plaintiffs lack standing to sue, preemption of federal common law by the Clean Air Act, and preclusion under...
Read More
The presidential panel investigating the causes of the Deepwater Horizon/BP spill in the Gulf of Mexico released one chapter of its report on the critical causes of the blowout, which released over 200 million gallons of oil into the Gulf of Mexico last year. The report is available here. The report blames the blowout on...
Read More
EPA today sued BP and four other partners in the Deepwater Horizion drilling rig in federal District Court in New Orleans. A link to the Bloomberg News report is here. The action seeks penalties under Clean Water Act section 311, as well as response costs and natural resource damages under the Oil Pollution Act. Significantly,...
Read More