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About this Blog

Welcome to the S&W Environmental, Natural Resources, Oil and Gas Law Blog. This blog is a resource for the regulated community to stay current on new developments impacting the environmental, natural resources and energy sectors. It provides timely updates on a broad range of federal, state and local environmental topics — including proposed legislation and government rulemakings — that impact regulated industries throughout the southwest and the nation as a whole.

Patience and Perseverance Paves the Way for Air-izona

by Amanda A. Reeve John Quincy Adams is credited with saying: “Patience and perseverance have a magical effect before which difficulties disappear and obstacles vanish.”  This is certainly apropos for Arizona in light of recent federal actions regarding two very critical and intertwined air regulatory issues: a decision rendered by the Ninth Circuit Court of […]

AR
Environmental & Regulatory Policy Advisor

My Project Changed—Is My EIR Still Valid: A New California Supreme Court Case Provides Guidance

by Mark D. Johnson Change is inevitable.  Many times between project approval and project construction fluctuations in market conditions, financing terms or other factors mandate project changes.  Do the changes require a further or modified California Environmental Quality Act (“CEQA”) analysis?  A new California Supreme Court case, Friends of the College of San Mateo Gardens […]

MJ
Former Partner

Another Step Closer to Direct Potable Reuse: California Releases Draft Report on the Feasibility of Developing Regulations for Direct Potable Reuse

by Karlene E. Martorana The California State Water Board released its Draft Report on the Feasibility of Developing Regulations for Direct Potable Reuse (the “Draft Report”).  California Water Code Section 13561 defines “direct potable reuse” as “the planned introduction of recycled water either directly into a public water system, as defined in Health and Safety […]

KM
Former Counsel

Rooftop Solar Companies and Utility Regulation

by Raymond S. Heyman Rooftop solar companies and their trade associations are intervening in a variety of state utility regulatory proceedings around the country. In Arizona, for example, in the past two years they have intervened in three rate cases for investor owned electric utilities and two rate cases for member-owned electric cooperatives. Additionally, rooftop solar advocates have intervened […]

| 3 min read | Tagged: , , , , , , , ,
RH
Former Partner

The Clean Air Act Creates a Nightmare for Yuma County

by Amanda A. Reeve We have all heard, and likely even experienced its meaning on numerous occasions, the old adage of being stuck between a rock and a hard place. Finding oneself in this position is most unpleasant as it means there are no viable options out of the dilemma.  Interestingly enough, Yuma County, Arizona […]

AR
Environmental & Regulatory Policy Advisor

Arizona Supreme Court Affirms Corporation Commission’s Constitutional Authority

by Timothy J. Sabo The Arizona Supreme Court has affirmed the broad constitutional powers of the Arizona Corporation Commission, in an opinion issued on August 8, 2016. The decision comes in Residential Utility Consumer Office v. Arizona Corporation Commission, a widely-watched case about the scope of the Commission’s power. The case involved a challenge by […]

TS
Former Counsel

Arizona Corporation Commission Issues New Water Policies

by Timothy J. Sabo Water is essential to Arizona. Hundreds of thousands of Arizonans are served by privately-owned water companies regulated by the Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC).  There are hundreds of these companies.  They range widely in size, financial condition, and expertise.  Perhaps the hardest job is faced by the smallest utilities, who must provide […]

TS
Former Counsel

They Blew Us Off – Insights into the State of New Mexico’s Suits Against the EPA and the State of Colorado

by Maribeth M. Klein While speaking at a recent conference on natural resource damages, the Secretary of the New Mexico Environment Department, Ryan Flynn, outlined New Mexico’s grievances against the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) and the State of Colorado in the wake of the disastrous release from the Gold King Mine into the Animas […]

| 2 min read
MK
Former Counsel

Murky Waters Following the Gold King Mine Spill

by Cynthia M. Chandley In the wake of actions taken on August 5, 2015 by contractors for the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) that resulted in the Gold King Mine Spill, western states that rely on water from the Animas River, the San Juan River, and the Colorado River may be left with long-term […]

CC
Former Partner

Industry, NGOs, Republicans, and Democrats Bond over Chemistry

by Michael C. Ford and Farris J. Gillman* The Frank R. Lautenberg Chemical Safety for the 21st Century Act was passed in the House by an overwhelming vote of 403 – 12.  After passing the Senate, it was signed into law by President Obama on June 22, 2016. The Lautenberg Act is the first major […]

FG
Former Associate