The Department of Justice (“DOJ”) issued a Comprehensive Environmental Justice Enforcement Strategy (“the Strategy”) on May 5, 2022, pursuant to President Biden’s January 2021 Executive Order on Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad.
A review of President Biden’s proposed Budget (“Budget”) for 2023 spotlights the enforcement priorities of the president’s Justice Department as the administration enters its third year. Vinson & Elkins’ review of the budget shows what the Biden administration is focused on and what that means for you and your company.
On March 28, 2022, the Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) published its Final Strategic Plan (“Strategic Plan”) setting forth the agency’s priorities over the next four years based on seven strategic goals focused on the protection of the environment and human health.
On March 28, 2022, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (“Corps”) published notice (“Notice”) that it is undertaking a formal review of Nationwide Permit (“NWP”) 12, one of over 50 general permits available nationwide that allow for streamlined approval of certain categories of activities that may affect federally jurisdictional waters and wetlands when the effects are no more than minimal.
In his Executive Order on Tackling the Climate Crisis at Home and Abroad, released on January 27, 2021, President Biden directed the White House Council on Environmental Quality (“CEQ”) to “create a geospatial Climate and Economic Justice Screening Tool and [to] annually publish interactive maps highlighting disadvantaged communities” in support of the Justice40 Initiative.
On February 18, 2022, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC”) issued two important policy statements by a 3-2 vote related to the construction of natural gas facilities.
The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC”) issued two important policy statements by a 3-2 vote on February 18, 2022 regarding the construction of natural gas facilities.
On February 15, 2022, the Biden administration announced a slew of low carbon emissions initiatives for the industrial sector in support of the administration’s goal to achieve a net-zero economy.
In 2021, there was sustained and fast-paced executive action from the Biden administration focused on emphasizing and addressing the environmental and human health effects of per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances, more commonly known as “PFAS.”
The Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) launched its PFAS Strategic Roadmap: EPA’s Commitments to Action 2021-2024 (the “Roadmap”) on October 18, 2021.
The concept of “environmental justice” (“EJ”) is not new—the federal government has been working to define and address environmental justice and related human health and environmental effects since the Clinton administration. The reality that communities consisting of minority, low-income, and vulnerable populations have been disproportionately impacted by adverse human health or environmental effects, sometimes for decades, is also generally accepted.
On December 8, 2021, President Biden signed Executive Order 14057, Catalyzing Clean Energy Industries and Jobs Through Federal Sustainability (“EO 14057”). Below we summarize EO 14057 and call out what matters for business, and what to watch for. EO 14057 makes clear that the federal government intends to use its purchasing power to achieve the overall goal of net-zero emissions by 2050.