California has enacted two new laws on corporate disclosure of direct and indirect greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and climate-related financial risks. Senate Bill (SB) 253, the Climate Corporate Data Accountability Act, expands state GHG emissions reporting requirements to large U.S. companies doing business in California. SB 261 requires biennial disclosure of climate-related financial risks.Continue Reading California’s New Climate-Related Disclosure Laws
On May 24, 2023, Minnesota became the latest state to impose significant restrictions on perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) when Governor Tim Walz signed HF 2310. In this blog post, we examine some of the critical questions surrounding the new law.
What does the new law do?
Headlining the new law is a ban on the sale, offer for sale, or distribution for sale of certain products that contain intentionally added PFAS. This ban will be rolled out in two stages. Initially, beginning on January 1, 2025, a person may not sell, offer for sale, or distribute for sale any of the following products if the product contains intentionally added PFAS:
- carpets or rugs;
- cleaning products;
- dental floss;
- fabric treatments;
- juvenile products;
- menstruation products;
- textile furnishings;
- ski wax; and
- upholstered furniture.
The commissioner of the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency (MPCA) may by rule identify additional products by category or use.
The second phase of the ban beginning on January 1, 2032 is a total prohibition on the sale, offer for sale, or distribution for sale of any product that contains intentionally added PFAS. A product or category of product can be excepted from this ban if the commissioner determines that the use of PFAS is a currently unavoidable use, although the commissioner may not make such a determination for a product that is included in the initial ban discussed above.Continue Reading Minnesota Enacts Sweeping PFAS Restrictions
The State Water Resources Control Board (“State Water Board”) is in the final stages of developing a revised Statewide Construction Stormwater General Permit (“Construction Stormwater General Permit” or “Permit”). The State Water Board is currently accepting public comments on a limited set of revisions to the draft Construction Stormwater General Permit, has noticed one last public workshop to discuss the contents of the proposed Permit, and has scheduled a hearing to consider adoption of the proposed Permit. Important dates are as follows:Continue Reading State Water Board to Consider Adoption of proposed Statewide Construction Stormwater General Permit at September 8, 2022 Meeting
On June 30, 2022, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed Assembly Bill 205 (“AB 205”), which, among various other things, expands the siting jurisdiction of the California Energy Commission (“CEC”) to include non-thermal generating facilities, such as solar and wind projects, with a capacity of 50 megawatts (MW) or more. The CEC’s siting jurisdiction was previously…
The State Water Resources Control Board (“Water Board”) is now receiving public comments on certain components of its revised proposed statewide National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (“NPDES”) Construction Stormwater General Permit (“Construction Stormwater General Permit”).
The first draft Construction Stormwater General Permit was released by the Water Board on May 28, 2021, following Staff’s preliminary draft released in November 2020 and consideration of public comments raised in public workshops held in December 2020. A revised proposed draft Construction Stormwater General Permit was released on March 30, 2022. Water Board Staff is now accepting comments on the following items in the revised draft Permit:
- Anti-degradation findings set forth in Order, Findings 9-18;
- Regulatory transition requirements set forth in Order, Section III.C;
- Sediment-based numeric effluent limitations for 14 pollutants as set forth in total maximum daily load (“TMDL”) implementation requirements in Attachment H section I.G.5, and the Fact Sheet sections I.G.5.g and I.W.6.g; and
- Nitrogen-based nutrient numeric action levels for the Los Angeles Area Lakes TMDL, the Los Angeles River Nutrients TMDL, the Santa Clara River Nitrogen Compounds TMDL, and the Ventura River Algae TMDL in Table H-2 of Attachment H, and in Fact Sheet sections I.G.5.d and I.W.6.d.
The food and beverage industry received good news this month thanks to a ruling from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit that weakens recent carcinogen claims. The court reinstated an injunction against the filing or prosecution of new California Proposition 65-based lawsuits related to acrylamide in food and beverage products.
Last month, the California Regional Water Quality Control Board, Central Valley Region (“Central Valley Water Board”) published a Food Safety Project White Paper (“White Paper”) on the use of oil field produced water for food crop irrigation. The White Paper did not find any evidence that using produced water for irrigation creates an elevated threat to human or crop safety.
Continue Reading White Paper Finds No Evidence of Elevated Threat to Human or Crop Safety from Use of Oil Field Produced Water to Irrigate Crops
On June 10, 2021, the State Water Resources Control Board (“Water Board”) issued a Revised Public Notice that changed certain dates noted in our June 2, 2021 blog post. The Water Board’s public hearing to receive public comments on the draft Construction Stormwater General Permit reissuance is now scheduled to occur at 9:00 a.m. on…
The State Water Resources Control Board (“Water Board”) is now receiving public comments on its proposed reissuance of the statewide National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (“NPDES”) Construction Stormwater General Permit (“Construction Stormwater General Permit”).
The Construction Stormwater General Permit regulates discharges to waters of the United States from stormwater and authorized non-stormwater associated with construction activities that disturb one or more acres of land, or are part of a common plan of development or sale that disturbs one or more acre of land surface. California’s previous Construction Stormwater General Permit expired in September 2014 but has been administratively extended until a reissued permit is adopted.
Continue Reading State Water Board Now Receiving Public Comments on Its Proposed Reissuance of the Statewide NPDES Construction Stormwater General Permit
As a follow-up to our March 11, 2021 blog post, as part of implementation of its Final Adopted Winery General Order, the State Water Resources Control Board (“SWRCB” or “Board”) announced that it will be holding a second Winery General Order Fees Stakeholder Meeting on April 28 from 1:00-3:00 PM via Webcast.…
As part of implementation of its Final Adopted Winery General Order, the State Water Resources Control Board (“SWRCB” or “Board”) will be holding a Winery General Order Fees Stakeholder Meeting on March 15 from 1:00-3:00 PM via Webcast. The updated notice for the Fees Stakeholder Meeting can be found here.