Online Articles

Is drilling “essential”?: Oil and gas leasing and permitting in the 2019 shutdown

March 1, 2019 by Rebecca Strauss Energy Fossil Fuels Natural Resources

By Sara Divett, Staff Contributor

The Trump administration issued oil and gas drilling permits during the most recent shutdown without approval or appropriations by Congress and without following procedures for public participation. Can the administration really do this? If not, how do environmentalists prevent this from happening in future shutdowns?

Did You Get the Memo? Latest Guidance from Trump’s EPA Sparks Controversy

February 21, 2019 by Samuel Ruddy Air Energy Federal Rollbacks Fossil Fuels Litigation

By Kathryn Priester, Staff Contributor

Environmental groups and the State of California are up in arms over an EPA memo scrapping a decades-old Clean Air Act policy. Will the DC Circuit weigh in on the EPA’s use of “guidance” to drastically shift US regulatory policy?

The Strategic Petroleum Reserve: An Underappreciated National Security Asset

November 5, 2018 by Rebecca Strauss Energy Fossil Fuels International

By Alex D. Pappas, Staff Contributor

Proposals to reform an emergency storage repository for crude oil known as the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (“SPR”) abound as President Trump and lawmakers react to changing oil market dynamics. As the policy goals and technical utilization of the SPR are evaluated, policymakers could benefit from additional assessment of the costs and benefits of SPR modifications that could imperil an essential national security asset.

Cars in traffic on a highway near a body of water

Revisiting Criminal Culpability Under the Clean Air Act in the Wake of ‘Dieselgate’

October 9, 2018 by Alexander Pappas Air Fossil Fuels

By Spencer Shweky, staff contributor.

It has now been just over 3 years since the Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) first informed the public that Volkswagen, at the time the world's largest automaker, had installed ‘cheat devices’ designed to evade U.S. regulators in hundreds of thousands of their cars. Ultimately, the automaker paid a $2.8 billion criminal fine, and 9 executives and employees were charged with violating the Clean Air Act (“CAA”) and Title 18 of the United States code (the main criminal code of the federal government). Interestingly, though, no one was actually held criminally liable for the pollution itself.