Publications

Section Newsletter Articles on Environmental Law

Recent environmental decisions: Federal cases By Kyle P. Carlson, Alison Hayden Kekrer, and Emily N. Masalski Environmental Law, June 2014 Recent cases of interest to environmental law practitioners.
USEPA wins cross state air transport pollution case By Raymond T. Reott Environmental Law, June 2014 In a 6-2 vote, the United States Supreme Court has reversed the decision of the District of Columbia Circuit Court of Appeals on an important Clean Air Act case.
Court limits application of Bona Fide Prospective Purchaser defense By Raymond T. Reott Environmental Law, March 2014 A discussion of the ramifications of the recent Voggenthaler v. Maryland Square LLC case.
Owner of vacant property liable for CERCLA cleanup By Raymond T. Reott Environmental Law, March 2014 The recent California decision in City of Banning v. Dureau illustrates the danger faced by a property owner who does not monitor and control activities on his vacant properties. 
Illinois court says insurer cannot escape duty to defend hog odor lawsuit under “pollution exclusion” in umbrella policy By Kristine Tidgren Agricultural Law, January 2014 In what could broaden an insurer’s duty to defend Illinois livestock producers in odor lawsuits, an Illinois appeals court has rejected an insurer’s denial of coverage to hog confinement operators pursuant to a standard “pollution exclusion” provision in an umbrella liability policy
Illinois court says insurer cannot escape duty to defend hog odor lawsuit under “pollution exclusion” in umbrella policy By Kristine Tidgren Environmental Law, January 2014 In what could broaden an insurer’s duty to defend Illinois livestock producers in odor lawsuits, an Illinois appeals court has rejected an insurer’s denial of coverage to hog confinement operators pursuant to a standard “pollution exclusion” provision in an umbrella liability policy
What is so great about a “No Further Remediation” letter anyway? By Matthew E. Cohn Environmental Law, January 2014 When deciding whether to buy, sell, hold, investigate, remediate, manage, or do anything else with or to your contaminated properties, the most important things to have are good data, good science, good counsel, good motives, and a healthy understanding of your tolerance of risk.
Absolute pollution exclusion denies coverage to Crestwood By Samantha Gibson Environmental Law, September 2013 A summary of Village of Crestwood v. Ironshore Specialty Insurance Co.
Lessees and superfund liability By Gene Schmittgens Environmental Law, June 2013 In December of last year, EPA published new guidance which clarifies that a lessee is entitled to assert the bona fide prospective purchaser defense.
Lloyd’s liable for more than $62 million based on environmental claims under “all sums” approach, plus 10 percent penalty and attorney fees for vexatious refusal to pay claims By John J. Barber Insurance Law, June 2013 A summary of the recent Missouri case of  Doe Run Resources Corp. v. Certain Underwriters at Lloyd’s.
News flash: Illinois Pollution Control Board finally adopts vapor intrusion rules By Matthew E. Cohn Environmental Law, June 2013 On May 16, 2013, the Illinois Pollution Control Board amended the TACO rules to adopt the new indoor inhalation exposure route effective July 15, 2013.
Green office tips Environmental Law, March 2013 The Environmental Law Section Council has started a new initiative to publish information we find to be particularly useful in helping members operate a green law office.
Illinois proposes more stringent asbestos regulation Environmental Law, March 2013 On December 7, 2012, the Illinois Department of Public published its First Notice for proposed amendments to Asbestos Abatement for Public and Private Schools and Commercial and Public Buildings in Illinois. The proposed rules are publicly available for review and were open for public comments until January 21, 2013.
New Phase I ASTM standard coming in 2013 By Steve Sawyer Environmental Law, March 2013 The ASTM E1527 task group is finalizing their revisions to the Phase I Environmental Site Assessment standard that will take effect in 2013.
Tetrachloroethylene toxicity changes result in lower liability By Timothy Adams Environmental Law, March 2013 On February 19, 2012, USEPA posted revised toxicity factors to the Integrated Risk Information System, indicating that tetrachloroethylene is a “likely human carcinogen” but has a lower carcinogenic risk potential and a higher non-carcinogenic risk potential that previously assumed by EPA.
Editor’s note: Developments in vapor intrusion rulemaking By Raymond T. Reott Environmental Law, February 2013 An introduction to the issue from Editor Ray Reott.
New radon requirements and changes to radon disclosure in 2013 By Kelly M. Greco Real Estate Law, February 2013 On August 17, 2012, Governor Quinn approved House Bill 4606, which created new radon requirements in Illinois as well as changes to radon disclosure by amending both The Child Care Act of 1969 and The Illinois Radon Awareness Act.
Newly proposed vapor intrusion restrictions By Raymond T. Reott Environmental Law, February 2013 On January 10, 2013, the Illinois Pollution Control Board issued its long-awaited opinion in the pending indoor air inhalation or vapor intrusion regulations.
Radon testing now required in Illinois daycare centers By Steve Sawyer Environmental Law, February 2013 Effective January 1, 2013, licensed daycare centers must have their facility tested for radon at least every three years.
Update regarding the pending vapor intrusion rulemaking, In the Matter of: Tiered Approach to Corrective Action Objectives (TACO) (Indoor Inhalation): Amendments to 35 Ill. Adm. Code 742 (R11-9) By Lauren C. Lurkins Environmental Law, February 2013 The rulemaking currently pending before the Illinois Pollution Control Board has seen significant action during the past several months.  
CCDD regulations finalized By Steve Sawyer Environmental Law, October 2012   On August 23rd, the Illinois Pollution Control Board (PCB) adopted the final Rule on Illinois’ Clean Construction or Demolition Debris (CCDD).
Radon as an issue for real estate closings: New home construction requirements By Myles Jacobs Environmental Law, October 2012 Thanks to the author's efforts, a new law has been passed in Illinois requiring that as of June 2013 new residential construction will have to include passive radon measures.
Supreme Court expands juror rights in environmental penalty cases By Raymond T. Reott Environmental Law, October 2012 Frequently, environmental statutes calculate penalties based upon the number of days the company violated the statute. After Southern Union Company v. United States, the government must prove that the defendant committed all of the acts constituting the offense for each given day.
Wetland regulations—More than an environmental rule: A comment on County of Lake v. Campus Investments, Inc. By Lisle A. Stalter Environmental Law, April 2012 This case is important on two fronts. First, it discusses statutory interpretation and how it is applied in the context of purpose provisions of enabling legislation of statutorily created public bodies. Additionally, this case recognizes that the protection of wetlands is not only for aesthetic purposes or to provide a habitat for migratory birds.
2011 veto session summary By Kent Mohr Environmental Law, March 2012 A summary of environmental bills introduced during the veto session of the 97th General Assembly. 
Institutional controls: The use of municipal ordinances and agreements as components of No Further Remediation Letters By Frank M. Grenard Environmental Law, March 2012  As a municipal attorney, the lawyer has a responsibility to inform the decision makers of requests for institutional controls, what they are, how they would benefit or be detrimental to the community, and to assure that the municipality would not bear any additional financial loss or liability. By the same token, the attorney should assure that the municipality understands that the business/development community needs assistance in obtaining closure of environmental incidents, many of them relatively minor in scale but they result in tremendous roadblocks to projects.
New Section 31 enforcement procedures By Coty Hopinks-Baul Environmental Law, March 2012 A detailed description of the enforcement process for practitioners not already familiar with the “Section 31 Process” and a brief discussion of the amendments to the process for those already familiar with it.
Radon as an issue for real estate closings By Myles Jacobs Real Estate Law, March 2012 While there presently is no law which requires a purchaser of a home to do a radon test, many purchasers have now become concerned and will conduct a radon test at the same time they do their home inspection.
Wetland regulations—More than an environmental rule: A comment on County of Lake v. Campus Investments, Inc. By Lisle A. Stalter Local Government Law, March 2012 This case is important on two fronts. First, it discusses statutory interpretation and how it is applied in the context of purpose provisions of enabling legislation of statutorily created public bodies. Additionally, this case recognizes that the protection of wetlands is not only for aesthetic purposes or to provide a habitat for migratory birds.
Recent decisions limit bankruptcy claims of PRP groups By Michele Gale Environmental Law, September 2011 The successful application of the Chemtura and Lyondell decisions to PRP claims in the Motors Liquidation Company bankruptcy could result in increasing the remediation obligations of other PRPs.