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Trump Issues More Executive Orders Rolling Back Energy and Oil Regulations

President Trump issued two executive orders this past Wednesday that are meant to roll back energy regulations and promote fossil fuel development. In particular, the pair of executive orders are aimed at speeding up the permitting process for oil and gas infrastructure projects and curbing states’ ability to hold up approvals. Under Section 401 of […]

California State Water Board Adopts Controversial Wetlands Rule

Culminating a process that began 11 years ago, the California State Water Resources Control Board last week unanimously adopted a revised policy to protect wetlands in the State. The policy creates a new definition of wetlands peculiar to California, gives a framework to determine a water of the state (nearly everything), and clarifies requirements for […]

A Kinder Gentler EPA?

Throughout last year, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) repeatedly confirmed that regulated entities could expect the EPA’s focus to be on compliance programs rather than harsher enforcement actions. This reprioritization included renaming the EPA’s previously titled National Enforcement Initiatives to the National Compliance Initiatives, working more cooperatively with businesses before resorting to more punitive […]

Breaking Ruling: Venezuela Unlawfully Expropriated ConocoPhillips’ Oil Investments

The below is from the ConocoPhillips Press Release HERE. HOUSTON – ConocoPhillips (NYSE: COP) today announced that an international arbitration Tribunal ruled Venezuela unlawfully expropriated ConocoPhillips’ significant oil investments in the Petrozuata and Hamaca heavy crude oil projects and the offshore Corocoro development project. According to an International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) […]

Congress Passes Largest Public Lands Package in Decades

The National Resources Management Act was approved yesterday by Congress in a landslide 363-62 vote. The Act is a sweeping public lands conservation package that will protect millions of acres of land and rivers across the country. It also designates over 1 million acres of new wilderness land, with almost 700,000 acres reserved for recreation […]

Barrick Gold Proposes Purchase of Newmont Mining Corp.

Barrick Gold Corp. proposed a merger with Newmont Mining Corp. based on an unsolicited, all-share deal. The offer values Newmont at $17.85 billion and would combine the world’s two largest gold mining companies. Barrick argues that the merger will allow the company to trim costs while combined assets, especially in Nevada, will open up additional […]

Trump administration ends fuel-efficiency negotiations with California

In a joint statement released on Thursday, the White House, Department of Transportation, and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that the Trump administration has ended negotiations with the California Air Resources Board (CARB) over vehicle fuel-efficiency standards. Until Thursday, the EPA, CARB, and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration had been engaged in talks […]

Breaking: Supreme Court takes up Clean Water Act Case

The below excerpt from Scotusblog can be found HERE. The Clean Water Act bars the discharge of any pollutant into “navigable waters” without a permit. In its lone grant on today’s order list, the Supreme Court agreed to decide whether a violation of the CWA occurs only when a pollutant is released directly into navigable […]

Gavin Newsom Downsizes High Speed Rail Project

Bowing to the reality of delays, out-of-control costs, and accusations of corruption, payback, and favoritism, California Governor Gavin Newsom reversed former Governor Jerry Brown’s steadfast support of the doomed rail system in his first State of the State speech on February 12, 2019.  Newsom stated that the high-speed rail project (a saga which began with […]

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