Off the Rails: the Norfolk Southern Train Derailment and its Aftermath
On February 3, 2023, Ohio was suddenly and unexpectedly rocked by an accident whose long-term consequences are still unfolding. A Norfolk Southern-operated freight train carrying toxic chemicals derailed in the village of East Palestine. This accident, which poses severe threats to the environment and safety of the local community, has raised significant concerns about the environmental implications of train accidents and the safety of transporting hazardous materials through residential areas.
On the Brink of Dead Pool: The Colorado River at Risk
The Colorado River provides water to seven U.S. states and has been experiencing drought since 2000. Tensions are now rising among the seven states that depend on water from this river. At the request of the Bureau of Reclamation, states were supposed to reach an agreement for how to limit their water usage by January 31, 2023. However, as of February 14, 2023, no such agreement has been met.
Clean Trucks Plan: How Reducing Emissions Impacts the Nation’s Commercial Vehicles
The EPA is expected to introduce tougher heavy duty emissions rules in 2023 as part of the Clean Trucks Plan with the intent to inhibit a significant reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. The quicker these changes in the greenhouse gas rules are made, the better for the environment and the future of the efficiency of transportation. The application of these regulations will lead to more efficient transmissions across the country as it impacts a large variety of important vehicles.
Fighting the Climate Crisis and Public Health Problems: A Step in the Right Direction
On December 20, 2022, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized a regulation that will require heavy-duty trucks and vehicles to adopt new, more stringent standards in order to reduce smog and pollution. The EPA implemented this measure as part of its Clean Trucks Plan, a three-year plan, created to reduce emissions from heavy-duty vehicles, in hopes of addressing the climate crisis and improving public health. The new standards set by this regulation are stronger than the current ones by more than 80%. Nonetheless, many are disappointed that the regulation is not as stringent as they had hoped for.
Financial Institutions and the Financing of Emissions: How Firms are Addressing the Climate Emergency Through Net Zero Emission Initiatives.
Megan Aldworth Associate Editor Loyola University Chicago School of Law, JD 2023 While our world economy is driven by commerce, over the last few decades, it has become apparent that along with driving the economy, commerce is driving our planet into a state of emergency. According to the UN Secretary-General, “the climate emergency is …
The Clock Continues to Tick for SEC Climate Proposal
Juhi Desai Associate Editor Loyola University Chicago School of Law, JD 2024 In March 2022, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) released a 490-page proposal encouraging organizations to adopt climate-focused regulations. The policies could include climate disclosure requirements and an expense report detailing the effect climate change has on businesses. However, shortly after the …
Property Rights and the Clean Water Act: The Potential Impacts of SCOTUS’ Decision
On Monday, October 3, the Supreme Court began its new term by hearing a case concerning the rights of property owners and the interests of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Clean Water Act. When Michael and Chantell Sackett purchased land in Idaho in 2004, they did so with the intention of building a home on the property. Their plans were quashed when the EPA stepped in and declared that the land the couple purchased constituted a wetland, subject to regulation under the EPA’s Clean Water Act because the land is located 300 feet from a large lake. The Court is now faced with the question; how far can the government regulate water in the United States? Additionally, what counts as ‘waters of the United States”? Although the Court is not expected to make a decision regarding this case until June of 2023, the repercussions of the court siding with the Sacketts could be detrimental.
Climate-Related Disclosures for Investors: What the SEC Has Proposed & How Proposals May Impact the Regulatory World and Small Businesses
In March of this year, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) proposed a new rule that would require public companies to disclose important information about their carbon footprint. Although many continue to sing the praises of the new rule, a fair share of critics has emerged as well. Additionally, while this proposal may have an impact on large public companies, critics question what this rule will mean for smaller suppliers.
America Has a Problem: The Ever-Worsening Water Crisis Plaguing the Country
As the summer came to an end, headlines about thousands of residents losing access to water swept the nation. The news came first out of Jackson, Mississippi. But although the southern city’s complete loss of access to water dominated the new cycle, it was far from the only place dealing with this issue. A few days later, reports of boil water advisories in Baltimore and NYC hit the news cycle. Unfortunately, these are only the latest instances in a long string of issues with access to safe and clean drinking water across the country.
Corporations Need to Pay More Attention to UN’s Sustainable Development Goals
On September 13, 2022, the United Nations General Assembly “UNGA” opened its 77th session in New York City. The UNGA is an international policy making organization made up of several Member States. Businesses and companies look towards developments from UNGA to implement procedures for sustainable practices that ensure their companies contribute to a healthy and sustainable environment and development. This article analyzes why and how companies need to emphasize the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals “SDGs” and how the compliance industry can hold companies accountable.