Massachusetts Environmental and

Land Use Alert

Massachusetts Environmental Developments

Implementing the 2014 Changes to Massachusetts Cleanup Regulations

Significant changes to the Massachusetts cleanup regulations, known locally as the “MCP,” became effective June 20, 2014.  

Boston Colleges Take Brownfields Tax Credit Fight to Court

Three Boston-area colleges sued the Massachusetts Department of Revenue in August claiming that “clarifying” changes made to the Massachusetts Brownfields Tax Credit program retroactively changed the program and resulted in the denial of reportedly more than $17 million in such credits sought by the colleges.

Massachusetts Land Use Developments

Location of a Structure, Without More, Is Insufficient to Prove the Historic High Water Mark

A Massachusetts Appeals Court affirmed a determination by the Commissioner of the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection that a seawall-walkway lies seaward of the historic high water mark based on a comparison of current conditions and historic maps.

Nonconformities Reconsidered: Massachusetts Court Reinterprets Zoning Act to Require Variances for New Nonconformities to Grandfathered Homes

In yet another twist in the law of residential non-conformities, the Massachusetts Appeals Court has held that there are some circumstances where municipalities may require a variance in order to alter a single- or two-family residence.

National Developments

OSHA’s Increased Enforcement of Facilities with Combustible Dusts Hazards

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) continues to issue citations for alleged violations of various general industry standards (such as general housekeeping and electrical standards) and Section 5(a)(1) of the Occupational Safety and Health Act, the General Duty Clause (“GDC”), for alleged workplace exposure to fire and/or explosion hazards from “combustible dust,” despite the lack of a clear and comprehensive general industry standard governing employers’ handling of combustible dusts.

Wide-ranging Federal Plans to Address Chemical Process Safety and Security

Substantive changes may be coming to OSHA’s process safety management standard, EPA’s Risk Management Plan regulations, and DHS’s CFATS program.

Threatened and Endangered Species Listings Likely to Increase Under New FWS Policy

On July 1, 2014, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and National Marine Fisheries Service published a “Notice of Final Policy” interpreting the phrase “significant portion of its range” in making listing decisions under the Endangered Species Act.

Supreme Court Holds That Industrial Sources Cannot Be Required to Obtain PSD or Title V Permits Based Solely on Their Greenhouse Gas Emissions

On June 23, the Supreme Court, in Utility Air Regulatory Group v. EPA , held that an industrial facility’s greenhouse gas emissions alone cannot be the basis for subjecting the source to the permitting requirements of the PSD and Title V provisions of the Clean Air Act, but if the source does a capital project that would be subject to regulation under these provisions for more conventional pollutants (e.g., particulate matter, NOx, SO2), permitting authorities may impose emissions limits on emissions of GHGs from those sources.

President Obama Signs the Water Resources Reform and Development Act into Law, the First Water Funding Legislation Since 2007

On June 10, President Obama signed into law the Water Resources Reform and Development Act, the first water funding legislation in seven years. In a rare showing of congressional bipartisanship, the WRRDA passed both the House (414-4) and the Senate (91-7) with nearly unanimous votes, sending a clear message that ports and coastal developments are key elements of our nation’s infrastructure.

White House Announcement Builds Momentum for Comprehensive Infrastructure NEPA and Permit Reform

With construction of the Tappan Zee Bridge replacement looming over his shoulder, President Obama announced an even greater commitment to reform the federal process for reviewing and permitting major infrastructure projects across the country.

Firm News & Events

Sixteen Beveridge & Diamond, P.C. Attorneys Named to Best Lawyers® for 2015

Beveridge & Diamond, P.C. is proud to announce that 16 of its attorneys, including Marc Goldstein and Brian Levey in the Firm's Wellesley office have been named to the 2015 edition of Best Lawyers®, the "oldest and most respected peer-review publication in the legal profession."

Beveridge & Diamond’s Scott Fulton Speaks at United Nations Environmental Justice and Sustainable Development Symposium, Part of First United Nations Environment Assembly

On Tuesday, June 24, Beveridge & Diamond Principal Scott Fulton joined other global environmental leaders speaking at a high-level symposium “Environmental Justice and Sustainable Development – A Global Symposium on Environmental Rule of Law.”

Whitman-Walker Health Recognizes Beveridge & Diamond for Pro Bono Leadership

Commending the firm for its dedication to protecting the most vulnerable members of our community, Whitman-Walker Health awarded its 2014 Going the Extra Mile Law Firm Award to Beveridge & Diamond on June 4, 2014.

Beveridge & Diamond Scores Appellate Victories in California and Texas for Waste and Recycling Clients, Protecting Major Landfills

Beveridge & Diamond’s appellate litigators recently secured important published decisions protecting clients’ landfills and establishing precedent favorable to the solid waste and recycling industry.

Chambers USA 2014 Ranks Beveridge & Diamond, P.C. Among Leading Law Firms

The Chambers USA Guide to the Legal Profession again ranked Beveridge & Diamond as a leading environmental law practice, nationwide and in California, the District of Columbia, Massachusetts, New York, and Texas. In addition to firm-level rankings, Chambers recognized 11 lawyers individually as leaders in their fields, including Steve Richmond and Jeanine Grachuk from the Wellesley office.

Authors

Marc J. Goldstein

Principal

(781) 416-5715 mgoldstein@bdlaw.com

Jeanine L.G. Grachuk

Of Counsel

(781) 416-5713 jgrachuk@bdlaw.com

Heidi P. Knight

Associate

(410) 230-1344
hknight@bdlaw.com

Brian C. Levey

Principal

(781) 416-5733 blevey@bdlaw.com

Stephen M. Richmond

Principal

(781) 416-5710 srichmond@bdlaw.com

Virginie K. Roveillo

Associate

(781) 416-5726 vroveillo@bdlaw.com

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 environmentalissues 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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