On April 12, 2019, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) issued an interpretative statement concluding that all releases of pollutants from a point source to groundwater are excluded from the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit program pursuant to Sections 301 and 402 of the Clean Water Act (Act). USEPA’s interpretative statement clarified that such discharges are excluded from NPDES permit requirements even where pollutants are conveyed to jurisdictional surface waters via groundwater.
David Edelstein, an associate in the Vorys Cincinnati office and a member of the finance, energy and real estate group, authored an article, titled “A Better Approach To Environmental Prosecution?,” for Environmental Law360.
David Edelstein, an associate in the Vorys Cincinnati office and member of the environmental group, authored an article for Environmental Law360 titled "From Gov't To Firm, Happily: Changing Careers Midstream."
On Dec. 3, 2015, the Ohio EPA issued an invitation to certain interested parties to begin discussions on how to address USEPA’s Notice of Deficiency for Ohio’s Startup, Shutdown and Malfunction (SSM) rules.
On April 7, 2015, USEPA proposed a zero discharge Clean Water Act pretreatment standard for wastewater from existing or new Unconventional Oil and Gas Extraction facilities discharged to a Publicly Owned Treatment Works (POTW).
On March 24, 2015, the Ohio Supreme Court decided the Fairfield County v. Nally (former Ohio EPA Director) case. This was a challenge brought by Fairfield County to a Clean Water Act (CWA) National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit limit, which was based on a total maximum daily load (TMDL) report prepared by Ohio EPA to limit phosphorus discharges from the county’s wastewater treatment plant.
On November 26, 2014, U.S. EPA proposed a more stringent national ambient air quality standard for ozone. The Clean Air Act requires U.S. EPA to establish two air quality standards for ozone: a primary standard, to protect public health with an “adequate margin of safety”; and a secondary standard, to protect the public welfare. U.S. EPA’s proposal reduces the current primary and secondary ozone standard of 75 parts per billion (ppb) to a level that is proposed to be between 65 and 70 ppb.
On March 10, 2014, U.S. EPA published proposed revisions and confidentiality determinations for the petroleum and natural gas source category of the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Reporting Rule, 40 CFR Part 98, Subpart W. The proposed revisions to Subpart W include amendments of general applicability, revised calculation methods and reporting requirements for specified emission sources within the source category, and confidentiality determinations for the new and substantially revised data elements associated with the proposed amendments to the rule.
On March 14, 2013, Representative Jared Polis (D-CO) introduced a bill (H.R. 1154) to amend the Clean Air Act (CAA) to eliminate the exemption for aggregation of hazardous air pollutants from oil and gas sources. CAA § 112(n)(4) currently prohibits the aggregation of emissions from "any oil or gas exploration or production well (with its associated equipment) and emissions from any pipeline compressor or pump station."
The Ohio EPA has proposed a new exemption from its Stage II vapor recovery requirements for new gasoline dispensing facilities (GDFs) that install low permeation hoses and notify the Ohio EPA of their intent to comply with the requirements of the new rule.
The Ohio Supreme Court recently decided a case involving the appropriate method for calculating civil penalties for violations of an air permit. In State ex rel. Ohio Atty. Gen. v. Shelly Holding Co., Slip Opinion No. 2012 – Ohio – 5700 (Dec. 6, 2012), the Court was asked to determine whether a violation of an air permit could be considered a continuous violation until the permit holder demonstrated compliance.