CBA Record November-December 2021
Other Emerging Issues Beyond those overarching issues, environ- mental lawyers face a litany of emerging and persistent issues. These are a few of the issues specific to environmental law that are of particular interest among our committee members: PFAS: The various classes of “forever chemicals,” with their panoply of applica- tions, are the subject of a wide array of regulatory and litigation developments, from toxic torts to drinking water and site remediation regulation in various states to federal action by just about every major water and waste program at USEPA. “Waters of the United States”: The Biden administration will be the third consecutive presidential team to try and navigate a workable regulatory definition of the Clean Water Act’s key jurisdictional phrase through a marsh of regulatory, liti- gation, and scientific issues. Follow-up onMaui Case: The Supreme Court’s 2020 decision in County of Maui v.
Hawaii Wildlife Fund created new uncer- tainty about when discharges to groundwa- ter may be regulated under the CleanWater Act. WithTrump administration guidance quickly issued and then revoked, there is significant uncertainty regarding how this decision will play out in permitting and enforcement. Environment, Social, and Corporate Governance: More and more, companies and investors are seeking legal help to understand and manage risks associated with the sustainability and social impacts of businesses. Understanding the web of international, private, and public law issues under the ESG umbrella is more important than ever. Clean Energy Jobs Act: Here in Illinois, this past year saw passage of a landmark law to phase out fossil fuel generation, accelerate the deployment of solar energy, battery storage and electric vehicles, and expand opportunities for historically mar- ginalized communities to benefit from the
shift to renewable energy, among many other policies.
Jorge Mihalopoulos, Chair of the CBA Environmental Law Commi t t ee , i s the lead attorney of the Environmental, Con- struction and Torts Division of the Met- ropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago.
Rober t We ins tock, Vi ce Chai r of the CBA Environmental Law Committee, is an Assistant Clinical Professor of Law of the Abrams Environmen- tal Law Clinic at the
University of Chicago Law School.
Environmental Law Reading Suggestions
Nature’s Best Hope: A New Approach to Conservation that Starts in Your Yard by Douglas W. Tallamy 2020 Workman Publishing (Non-Fiction)
The book shows how homeowners everywhere can turn their yards into con- servation corridors that provide wildlife habitats. Because this approach relies on the initiatives of private individuals, it is immune to the whims of govern- ment policy. Even more important, it is practical, effective, and easy—you will take away specific suggestions you can incorporate into your own yard.
Cleaning Up America: An Insider’s View of the Environmental Protection Agency by John Quarles 1976 Houghton Mifflin (Non-Fiction)
The book, written by a former USEPA deputy administrator, provides a first- hand history of the formation and early years of the EPA, including the bu- reaucratic infighting and struggles within the Nixon and Ford administrations, and with Congress.
Thank you the CBA Environmental Law Committee for contributing to this issue’s book reviews.
CBA RECORD 27
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