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PFAS on the path to being designated CERCLA “hazardous substances”—buyers and sellers beware.

By Kirk M. Tracy EPA is taking action against “Forever Chemicals” on multiple fronts that will impact environmental regulation, investigation, and remediation at an unimaginable number of sites around the United States.  EPA has already established enforceable limits on six...

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Texas Court of Appeals, Eleventh District, Affirms Dismissal of Claims Against the City of Midland in a Cost Recovery Action Under the Texas Solid Waste Disposal Act

By Kirk M. Tracy In an action concerning groundwater contaminated by trichloroethylene (“TCE”) and perchloroethylene (“PCE”), allegedly conveyed and released by a municipal sewer system, the Court of Appeals of Texas, Eleventh District, recently ruled on an interlocutory appeal from...

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Texas Supreme Court interprets a binding mandatory arbitration clause against successor assignees related to the purchase and sale of property and equipment.

By Kirk M. Tracy In the recent Texas Supreme Court (“Supreme Court”) decision in Wagner v. Apache Corp., the Supreme Court affirmed the court of appeals’ judgment regarding an indemnity clause and an arbitration clause in a land purchase agreement,...

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California City Succeeds in Establishing Joint and Several Liability Under CERCLA – Court Rejects Defendants’ Divisibility Defense

By Bret Stone The City of West Sacramento filed a lawsuit under RCRA, CERCLA, the Gatto Act, and several other state law causes of action to address toxic levels of soil and groundwater contamination resulting from the release of hazardous...

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California Supreme Court Ruling Will Allow Policyholders Easier Access to Excess Insurance

By Brian Paget Earlier this week, the California Supreme Court finally settled an important insurance law issue that had engendered conflicting decisions among the state’s lower courts.  On Monday, April 6, 2020, in Montrose Chemical Corp. v. Superior Court, No....

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How to Survive the PFAS Apocalypse

By Bret Stone and John Till The metal finishing industry is under intense regulatory scrutiny over a new chemical of concern that has been making headlines all over the country.  It’s actually not just one chemical, it’s a family of...

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Beware of New Environmental Screening Levels

By Kirk Tracy In January (2019), the San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Board (“Water Board”) published new Environmental Screening Levels (“ESLs”) for over 100 chemicals found at sites with contaminated soil and groundwater, an update from the prior ESLs published...

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An Expanded Interpretation of Clean Water Act Jurisdiction

By Kirk Tracy The U.S. Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, in Upstate Forever v. Kinder Morgan Energy Partners, L.P., recently held that “an alleged discharge of pollutants, reaching navigable waters located 1000 feet or less from the point source by...

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San Diego Storm Water Update

By Jon Lycett In July 2013, I wrote about the San Diego Regional Water Quality Control Board’s order updating the NPDES general permit for municipal separate storm sewer systems (“MS4s”).  See San Diego Water Board Issues Updated Permit for Municipal...

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Aftermath of the Montecito Mudslides – Determining Insurance Coverage and Navigating Policy Exclusions

By Cory Baker Post-Wildfire “Perils” and Property Damage Wildfires dramatically change the landscape and ground conditions, which can lead to the increased risk of flooding even with light rains. Natural, unburned vegetation and soil normally act as a sponge during...

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