Massachusetts Environmental and

Land Use Alert

Massachusetts Environmental Developments

MassDEP Issues Draft Fact Sheet Guidance on PFAS, a Class of Emerging Contaminants

On January 26, 2017, MassDEP announced that it had developed and is seeking comment on a Fact Sheet entitled “Guidance on Sampling and Analysis for PFAS at Disposal Sites Regulated under the Massachusetts Contingency Plan.” The Fact Sheet is a primer on the class of contaminants known as PFAS including manufacture, toxicity, the types of sites where it may be found, sampling considerations, and analytical concerns.

Landfill Expansion Project Halted by MassDEP

Company Settles MassDEP enforcement case, Reaches Agreement to split $10 Million Cost to Construct Drinking Water Line and Receives Notice of Intent to Sue from Environmental Groups

A proposal to expand the Southbridge, Massachusetts landfill owned by the Town of Southbridge and operated by a subsidiary of Casella Waste Systems has been halted by MassDEP in the face of concerns about the source of contaminants, primarily 1,4 dioxane, found in area groundwater.

OMB Signs Off on U.S. EPA’s 2017 Construction Stormwater Permit

Spared by the Office of Management and Budget from the Trump Administration’s regulatory freeze, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) 2017 National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System General Permit for Stormwater Associated with Construction Activities (2017 CGP) became effective on February 16, 2017.

Academic Institutions: Do You Still Have a Single-Walled Steel Underground Storage Tank?

Massachusetts state regulations require that all single-walled USTs be removed or closed-in-place by August 7, 2017. Most tanks installed prior to 1970 (and in some cases later) were single-walled steel tanks.

Massachusetts Land Use Developments

Court Mandates Full Payment of 40B Application Fee for Complete Application

Municipality Successfully Invokes Safe Harbor Due to Late Payment

Ruling that a developer who files a comprehensive permit application without paying the full filing fee “does so at its peril,” the Court in Zoning Board of Appeals of Hanover v. Housing Appeals Committee , 90 Mass. App. Ct. 111 (2016), found that the local board of appeals properly considered the developer's application with the benefit of the “safe harbor” which the town had achieved in the interim period between the partial and full payment of the fee. As a result, the Court reversed the Housing Appeals Committee’s (HAC) order that the local board issue a comprehensive permit for a 200-unit rental project. In sum, the “safest procedure” for a developer is to concurrently pay the full fee and file a motion to reduce it. 

National Developments

Recent PFAS Case Law – RCRA, CERCLA and Toxic Tort Claims

A new class of emerging contaminants poses challenges at remediation sites and for the protection of drinking water, and is generating new toxic tort litigation. Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are emerging contaminants that are being identified at several sites in many areas of the country. The U.S. EPA and many states are beginning to issue guidelines, advisories or in some cases, standards for PFAS in drinking water, soil, or groundwater.

Renewable Energy: The State of Play in 2017

The renewable energy sector ended 2016 and began 2017 under assault. Nevada and other states rolled back net metering laws. Fishing interests brought a lawsuit to block an offshore wind lease and upend BOEM’s offshore wind program. And—not least of all—the Trump administration has promised to kill the Clean Power Plan.

Corps of Engineers Nationwide Permits – Some New, Some Modified – Take Effect

On March 19, 2017, the latest iterations of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ nationwide permits (NWPs) will take effect. As set forth in the Corps’ final rule announcing these NWPs, the 2017 package contains 52 permits, many of which are being reissued from the permits currently in place, along with General Conditions, Definitions, and decision-making directions for Corps district engineers.

EPA Stays RMP Rule Amendments and Grants Petition for Reconsideration

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has stayed the implementation of a significant revision of the Risk Management Program rule pending the receipt of additional comments. Simultaneously, EPA has granted a request for a motion for reconsideration filed by several trade associations whose industry members would be affected by the rule changes, setting up the possibility that EPA will significantly amend the rule or rescind the rule amendment package.

EPA Issues Guidance for Characterization and Remediation of Contaminated Sediment Sites Under CERCLA

In a Directive sent to Regional Administrators on January 9, 2017, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Office of Land and Emergency Management has identified 11 recommendations intended to facilitate the development, evaluation, selection and implementation of response actions at contaminated sediment sites under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act.

The Congressional Review Act: Congress Dusts Off an Old Oversight Weapon

One of the great powers that Congress has to undo changes made by a prior administration is the Congressional Review Act, which was enacted in 1996. As of March 17, 2017, this Congress has used the CRA to overturn more agency rulemakings than any Congress before it. Many more regulations are on the potential chopping block; a lot of them address environmental, energy, and natural resources issues.

Impacts of the 2016 U.S. Election on Environmental Law, Policy, and Enforcement

The 2016 election results will have wide-ranging impacts on the future direction of environmental law, policy, and enforcement in the U.S. Informed by decades of work for companies in numerous industry sectors, we asked a cross-section of our lawyers practicing in various areas of environmental law to offer their views on what we can expect from the Trump Administration and the Republican Congress, and where bipartisan support for existing programs is likely to prevail. 

Firm News & Events

Law360 Names Beveridge & Diamond Environmental Practice of the Year

Citing Beveridge & Diamond’s “impressive array of work,” Law360 has named Beveridge & Diamond a “Practice Group of the Year” for environmental in its 2016 listing. Law360 recognizes “the law firms that racked up victories in litigation and closed the big deals to make their mark among clients and throughout the legal industry.”

Beveridge & Diamond Again Named a Top National Environmental and Litigation Firm by U.S. News – Best Lawyers

U.S. News Media Group and Best Lawyers have once again awarded Beveridge & Diamond’s environmental and litigation practices a Tier 1 nationwide ranking in the 2017 Best Law Firms list.

EPA Special Counsel Stacey J. Sublett Rejoins Beveridge & Diamond

We are pleased to announce that U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Special Counsel Stacey J. Sublett has rejoined the firm as an associate. Stacey first joined Beveridge & Diamond as an associate in 2012 and joined EPA’s Office of the General Counsel in 2015.

Russell Fraker Named Of Counsel

Beveridge & Diamond is pleased to announce that Russell N. Fraker has been named Of Counsel. Russell represents clients in domestic and international environmental matters, predominantly through compliance counseling on regulatory regimes affecting facilities and products. He has broad, multi-jurisdictional experience with air, biosafety, chemical, product stewardship, waste, and water laws.

New Beveridge & Diamond Online Resource Centers

In addition to our existing TSCA Reform Resource Center , we are pleased to announce the launch of two new online resource centers to help you stay abreast of developments in key areas of environmental regulation:

Beveridge & Diamond Secures Trial Win for City of Los Angeles, Striking Down Biosolids Ban on Two Constitutional Grounds

Following a two week bench trial prosecuted by Beveridge & Diamond Principals Jimmy Slaughter and Jamie Auslander and California based counsel Michael Lampe, the Tulare County, California Superior Court has struck down a voter initiative passed in 2006 in Kern County that banned the land application of biosolids (treated municipal wastewater sludge) to farmland in Kern County.

Benjamin F. Wilson Receives Thurgood Marshall College Fund’s Legacy Award

Beveridge & Diamond, P.C. is proud to announce that our Firm's Chairman, Benjamin F. Wilson, was honored at the Thurgood Marshall College Fund’s Thurgood Marshall Legacy Award.

Benjamin F. Wilson Named Chair of Environmental Law Institute Board of Directors

Benjamin F. Wilson , Chairman of Beveridge & Diamond, P.C., has been elected to serve as Chair of the Environmental Law Institute’s (ELI) Board of Directors.  As Board Chair, Mr. Wilson will be a driving force behind ELI’s goal to bridge differences across economic interests and policy divides and find meaningful solutions that provide for the evolution and leverage of environmental law.

Daniel Krainin Named to Environmental Law Institute's Leadership Council

Dan Krainin , a Principal in Beveridge & Diamond's New York office, has been named to the Environmental Law Institute's Leadership Council.

Authors

Marc J. Goldstein

Principal

(781) 416-5715 mgoldstein@bdlaw.com

Jeanine L.G. Grachuk

Principal

(781) 416-5713 jgrachuk@bdlaw.com

Heidi P. Knight

Principal

(781) 416-5765
hknight@bdlaw.com

Brian C. Levey

Principal

(781) 416-5733 blevey@bdlaw.com

Stephen M. Richmond

Principal

(781) 416-5710 srichmond@bdlaw.com

Brook J. Detterman

Associate

(781) 416-5745 bdetterman@bdlaw.com

Virginie K. Roveillo

Associate

(781) 416-5726 vroveillo@bdlaw.com

Join Us for the Boston Marathon!

Monday, April 17, 2017

Our Wellesley office is conveniently located on the marathon routeat mile 16.

Whether you’re cheering on an athlete, running, or just want to celebrate Patriots’ Day, stop by for refreshments, lively company, great views, free parking, and clean bathrooms!

Family and friends welcome!

RSVP/Additional Details

We hope to see you !

Beveridge & Diamond has 100 lawyers in seven U.S. offices who focus on environmental, project development, and natural resource law, litigation and alternative dispute resolution. We help clients around the world resolve critical environmental and sustainability issues relating to their products, facilities, and operations.

Our Massachusetts team helps clients manage their environmental issues and provides land use, environmental, and all related litigation services to development projects for industrial, commercial and residential clients. We offer focused expertise and personalized, efficient service from lawyers who know the landscape for business in Massachusetts.

Massachusetts Office
15 Walnut Street
Wellesley, MA 02481
(781) 416-5700

Learn more at www.bdlaw.com .

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