Soil And Fill Recyclable Materials Industry Scrambles To Comply With New Law Aimed To Crack Down On Illegal Dumping

Archer & Greiner, P.C.
Nicholas J. Lochetta II

March 11, 2020

How New Jersey’s soil and fill recycling businesses will be impacted.

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy recently signed Senate bill S-1683 (A-4267) extending many compliance requirements for the solid waste industry. This effort to overhaul rules applicable to soil and fill recycling businesses comes after major cases of alleged illegal dumping made headlines in the past year, including a report about a seven-story pile of waste and debris that had been created on property in a residential section of Vernon Township. Soil tests found that the pile contained elevated levels of chemicals which are harmful to human health. This new law will prevent this, and similar situations, from happening again.

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Synergy Environmental – Coronavirus (COVID-19) Message

U.S. CDC Updates click here

To our Clients, Colleagues, Vendors and Families,

Synergy Environmental, Inc. is committed to working with Federal, State and local authorities to mitigate the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19). With this in mind, let us outline the measures we are taking to address the situation at our offices in Montgomery County, PA; Berks County, PA; Lehigh County, PA and Camden County, NJ.

Synergy Environmental, Inc. remains fully operational, with some of our staff in the office and others working remotely. We are asking our employees working in our offices to employ social distancing best practices as well as avoiding gatherings of 10 or more people. We are also utilizing technology, such as chat, text, e-mail and phone communication to lessen the impact of exposure.

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Looking For Limits: The Negotiation Of Environmental Indemnity Agreements

Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft LLP
Steven M. Herman and Molly Lovedale

February 3, 2020

The original article can be accessed here

One of the key ancillary documents in commercial real estate loans is the environmental indemnity. Under federal and state environmental laws, an owner of real property is strictly liable for the remediation of contamination from hazardous substances on such real property.

Environmental indemnities are typically executed by the borrower and the guarantor collectively as the indemnitor and include representations and covenants relating to hazardous substances and, most importantly, from a lender’s perspective, an indemnification in favor of the lender for any claims or losses arising from hazardous substances on the mortgaged property. Unless otherwise negotiated by the indemnitor, the indemnity survives indefinitely. Consequently, much of the negotiation between the borrower and the lender centers around trying to limit when the lender can make a claim under the indemnity.

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New Reporting Rule for Accidental Releases

Troutman Sanders LLP
Randy E. Brogdon, Carroll “Mack” W. McGuffey III and Richard L. Pepper

February 12, 2020

The Chemical Safety Board (“CSB”) recently issued a final rule that will add additional reporting obligations to certain releases, including those that previously did not require reporting. Last week, the CSB signed the pre-publication version of its final Accidental Release Reporting Rule. The Rule, which will become effective 30 days after its publication in the Federal Register, will require stationary source owners/operators to report to the CSB any “accidental release” resulting in:

  • A fatality;
  • A serious injury resulting in death or inpatient hospitalization; or
  • Estimated property damage at or outside the stationary source equal to or greater than $1 million.

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EPA Consent Agreement Sets Schedule for Hazardous Substance Spill Response Rulemaking

Kelley Drye & Warren LLP
Joseph J. Green

February 13, 2020

EPA has agreed, in a draft settlement, to conduct a rulemaking regarding the establishment of regulations to address potential “worst case” spills of hazardous substances similar to the existing “Facility Response Plan” (FRP) program for oil.  In a consent decree reached with the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) and other environmental groups, published in the Federal Register on February 3, the agency agreed to issue a proposed rulemaking within two years of the final date of the consent decree “pertaining to the issuance of the Hazardous Substance Worst Case Discharge Planning Regulations.”  A final rule would be required within 30 months of the proposal.

The consent decree follows litigation filed by the environmental groups in March 2019:

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Without “Hazardous Substance” Designation, Pennsylvania PFAS Case Against Navy Seeking Cleanup Fails

Sidley Austin, LLP
Samuel B. Boxerman and Aaron L. Flyer

January 21, 2020

The original Blog can be accessed here:

As discussed last week, the U.S. House of Representatives recently passed a bill designating specific per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) — perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctane sulfonic acid (PFOS) — as “hazardous substances” under the federal Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA). But unless and until the designation becomes federal law, the viability of PFAS-related cleanup claims under state law depend on whether the individual state has designated PFOA and PFOS as hazardous. Last week, in Giovanni, et al. v. Department of the Navy, the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania dismissed a case bringing a claim under Pennsylvania’s Hazardous Sites Cleanup Act (HSCA) for alleged PFOA and PFOS contamination from facilities owned and operated by the U.S. Navy. The court found that the plaintiffs could not maintain their claim because these substances have not been designated as hazardous by either the federal or state government, as required by HSCA.

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PFAS Update: EPA Progress Under PFAS Action Plan

Robinson & Cole LLP
Megan E. Baroni

December 5, 2019

Earlier this year, we wrote about EPA’s PFAS Action Plan, the agency’s blueprint for addressing contamination and protecting public health from per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). The PFAS Action Plan, released in February 2019, details a number of actions EPA plans to take with regard to PFAS, including time frames for implementation. EPA has been making some progress towards implementation, albeit not always on the timeline set forth in the Plan. Below are a few updates since February:

Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) Listing for Certain PFAS Compounds

Yesterday, EPA published notice that it is considering a rule to add PFAS compounds to the list of toxic chemicals subject to reporting under section 313 of the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act. This listing would require certain industry sectors to annually report releases of these chemicals. The purpose of the TRI program is to provide the public with information, or, as EPA puts it, “A Right to Know, A Basis to Act.”

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Worth Another Look: Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative

Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney PC
Lauren Orazi, Matthew T. Fine

December 2, 2019

On October 3, 2019, Governor Tom Wolf issued Executive Order – 2019-07- Commonwealth Leadership in Addressing Climate Change through Electric Sector Emissions Reductions. The executive order instructs the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) to develop a rulemaking package to “abate, control or limit carbon dioxide emissions from fossil-fuel-fired electric power generators” consistent with the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI).

DEP has until July 31, 2020 to present the proposed rulemaking package to the Pennsylvania Environmental Quality Board (EQB). The EQB is a 20-member independent board that adopts DEP regulations. The Board includes 11 state agencies, five members of the Citizens Advisory Council, and four members of the Legislature.

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USMCA Vote In U.S. Congress Appears Imminent After Agreement To Change Provisions On Enforcement, Labor, Environment, And Pharmaceuticals

Hogan Lovells
Warren H. Maruyama, Juan Francisco Torres Landa, Jonathan T. Stoel, H. Deen Kaplan, Robert D. Kyle, Ivan Zapien, Chandri Navarro, Craig Lewis, M. Jorge Yáñez V., Jared R. Wessel and Patrick de Lapérouse

December 11, 2019

Implementing legislation to enact the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) is expected to be introduced as early as the week of 16 December following extensive discussions between leaders of the U.S. Congress and the U.S. Administration. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and House Ways & Means Chairman Richard Neal (D-MA) announced a breakthrough in negotiations regarding certain provisions of the USMCA that was signed 30 November 2018. The two Democratic Congressional leaders cited changes to enforcement, labor, environment, and pharmaceutical chapters in the agreement in announcing the decision to bring implementing legislation to enact USMCA into U.S. law.

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