EPA issued draft guidance revising its Technical Guidance for Assessing Environmental Justice in Regulatory Analysis. The proposed revisions incorporate portions of Executive Order 14096, and they align with the federal government’s push to enhance community involvement, to assess cumulative impacts, and put EJ issues front and center in agency decision-making. Read more about the proposed changes here. #environmentaljustice
Continue Reading EJ Evolution: EPA Issues Draft Revision of Technical Guidance for Assessing Environmental Justice in Regulatory Analysis

The EPA is seeking comments on its recently-published Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, which proposes national performance standards under the Vessel Incidental Discharge Act. The EPA presents new data on ballast water management systems and solicits public comments on the standards and definitions applicable to ballast tanks, hulls and associated niche areas, and graywater systems. The Supplemental Notice of Proposed Rulemaking brings VIDA one step closer to full implementation.
Continue Reading EPA’s Proposed Rule on Vessel Incidental Discharges Brings VIDA One Step Closer to Full Implementation

On November 13, 2023, the U.S. Coast Guard published Policy Letter 23-05 which provides the first actual guidance for vessel owners and operators on the expectations for the surveillance equipment that they are required to install and maintain under the Safer Seas Act, which became law in December 2022 as part of the James M. Inhofe National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2023.
Continue Reading USCG Issues First Guidance on Safer Seas Act Camera Requirements

EPA and the Army Corps published their new regulatory definition of “Waters of the United States” (WOTUS) today in response to the Supreme Court’s landmark Sackett decision from earlier this year. While the rule clearly narrows the scope of federally regulated wetlands, ambiguity remains as to certain types of wetlands.
Continue Reading EPA and Army Corps Release New WOTUS Rule

BOEM’s GOM wind lease sale earlier this week resulted in just 1 high bid of $5.6 million. A drop in the bucket compared to last year’s California wind lease sale which received five winning bids ranging from $130-$173.8 million and totaling $757.1 million. Now what? Find out here on Liskow’s Energy Law Blog.
Continue Reading First-Ever Gulf of Mexico Wind Auction Results in Only 1 Wind Lease Offshore Louisiana. What Happens Next?

Louisiana shrimpers will need to comply with the NMFS rule requiring TED devices on skimmers 40 feet or greater in length. The rule went into effect in Louisiana waters on February 1, 2022, after a court granted a six-month preliminary injunction and while the state of Louisiana’s challenge to the rule was pending. The Fifth Circuit recently affirmed that the state of Louisiana does not have standing to challenge this TED rule and dismissed the suit.
Continue Reading Dismissal of Louisiana’s Challenge to TED Requirement for Shrimping Vessels in State Waters Affirmed

EPA administratively closed its Title VI investigations into whether LDEQ and LDH engaged in racial discrimination when issuing approvals for two Louisiana facilities. To find out more about how this impacts environmental justice considerations in Louisiana, read it on the Energy Law Blog.
Continue Reading EJ Evolution: EPA Closes Title VI Investigations into LDEQ and LDH

On May 25, 2023, the Nation’s first U.S.-built offshore wind substation departed from a Texas fabrication facility for the South Fork Wind Farm in federal waters on the New York outer continental shelf. This marks the start of Jones Act compliant offshore wind support vessels being manufactured domestically, including the first-ever U.S. flagged wind turbine installation vessel (“WTIV”) and offshore wind service operations vessel (“SOV”), both of which are currently under construction in Texas and Louisiana, respectively.
Continue Reading MADE IN AMERICA: U.S.-Built Offshore Wind Substation and Support Vessels Start to Set Sail for Federal Waters

On June 8, 2023, the Ocean Policy Committee (composed of members from the Council on Environmental Quality and Office of Science and Technology Policy) published a Request for Information, seeking input on developing an “Ocean Justice Strategy.” This strategy will focus on environmental justice (“EJ”) concerns for communities residing near the ocean, coasts, and Great

The U.S. Supreme Court decision in Sackett v. EPA, No. 21-454 (May 25, 2023) is a landmark ruling in environmental law interpreting the scope of water bodies covered by the Clean Water Act (CWA) – an issue that has been debated by courts, presidential administrations, and federal agencies for decades. The Court’s ruling holds