“Never let a good crisis go to waste.” This adage, attributed to Chicago Mayor and former Obama White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, seems especially apt regarding emergency legislation enacted by California lawmakers and signed into law last weekend by Governor Jerry Brown in response to the worst drought in recorded California history. That […]
The EPA Could Well Lose This Challenge to Its Greenhouse Gas Reduction Efforts
The Supreme Court heard oral arguments today in the most important environmental law case of the current Term: Utility Air Regulatory Group v. Environmental Protection Agency. Based on those arguments–and, more importantly, the justices’ questions and comments–it appears that EPA’s efforts to regulate greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from stationary sources under the Clean Air Act’s […]
Big Stakes and Big Players in This Year's Biggest Environmental Case
On Monday, the Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in the biggest environmental law case of its current Term, Utility Air Regulatory Group v. EPA. Legal Planet colleagues Ann Carlson and Dan Farber have already posted their thoughts on the case. Let me add mine. Utility Air Regulatory Group involves EPA’s authority to regulate stationary […]
Court likely to rule in favor of EPA
Next Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in Utility Air Regulatory Group (UTAG) v. EPA. I’ve previously described what is at stake in the case here and here and, in the interest of full disclosure, helped author a brief in support of EPA’s position. The oral arguments might begin to reveal how […]
OIRA is staffed by under-trained, over-worked short-termers.
OIRA is an agency whose functions are as mysterious to most people as its name. It doesn’t help much to learn that OIRA stands for Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs. The phrase “regulatory czars” is more informative. OIRA runs the federal government’s regulatory process. Although agencies like EPA are required to have a lot […]
Smart growth alternatives would help end the vicious cycle of highway expansion and housing sprawl in San Diego region
Berkeley Law’s Center for Law, Energy & the Environment (CLEE) filed an amicus brief last week in a California Court of Appeal case with far-reaching implications for development, transportation, and California’s climate goals. The case, Cleveland National Forest Foundation v. San Diego Association of Governments (SANDAG), challenges the State’s first Regional Transportation Plan/Sustainable Communities Strategy […]
A new study shows how to strengthen marine preserves.
The Bush Administration is not remembered fondly by environmentalists, but one important exception came at the beginning of 2009. That’s when President Bush created an additional 195,000 square miles of marine reserves, on top of the 140,000 miles he had created previously. Such marine reserves are not unique to the United States, of course. Yet, […]
When will we start to manage our natural gas resources?
For the last half century, domestic natural gas policy has looked something like this: Natural gas is the cleanest of the fossil fuels. It is versatile and economical. So, let’s pull it out of the ground and use it as fast as we can. In the last decade, the policy has been appended to include […]
Keystone XL would run through a column of Red States and depopulating counties.
Looking at three maps sheds some interesting light on the the politics of the Keystone XL pipeline. The pipeline’s geography resonates in an interesting way with political and demographic geography. We can start with two maps that show the proposed route (on the left) and the dates in which counties reached their peak populations. You […]
UCLA’s Emmett Center filed an amicus curiae brief yesterday in Utility Air Regulatory Group (UARG) v. EPA, the U.S. Supreme Court case that will determine whether EPA’s greenhouse gas emissions rules under the Prevention of Significant Deterioration section of the Clean Air Act are valid. Arguing on behalf of the South Coast Air Quality […]