Sunset Roadless Area Remanded to Study Impact on Water and Fish Resources

Sunset Roadless Area Remanded to Study Impact on Water and Fish Resources

U.S. District Court Remands Case Challenging Environmental Impact Statement A group of environmental organizations sought to protect public lands and the environment by seeking judicial review of a decision by the Department of the Interior, Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (“OSM”). The OSM decision recommended approval of a mining plan that authorizes the mining of federally owned coal on public lands by Mountain Coal Company (“MCC”). The plaintiffs, WildEarth Guardians, High Country Conservation, The Center for Biological Diversity, and the Sierra Club, argue the...

Group Sues U.S. Bureau of Reclamation for Discharging Pollutants

Group Sues U.S. Bureau of Reclamation for Discharging Pollutants

California’s Central Valley is home to fertile agricultural land, though it receives little rainfall. The federal government helped alleviate this problem by constructing irrigation and drainage projects to provide water to the region. A diverse group of plaintiffs sued the United States Bureau of Reclamation and San Luis & Delta Mendota Water Authority on the grounds that the drainage system discharged pollutants into the surrounding waters, violating the Clean Water Act (“CWA”). The plaintiffs appealed rulings by the district court in favor of the defendants. Background The...

Your Rights as an Employee Under OSHA

Your Rights as an Employee Under OSHA

Many work environments require workers to exercise care when performing their jobs. Some employees are exposed to dangers in the workplace on a daily basis.

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Russian Satellites Trailing US Spy Satellite in Orbit

Russian Satellites Trailing US Spy Satellite in Orbit

In a recent statement, General John “Jay” Raymond, the commander of the newly-formed U.S. Space Force, said that since last year two Russian satellites have been demonstrating “unusual and disturbing behavior” while following a multibillion-dollar U.S. spy satellite in orbit. Launched in November of last year, Kosmos 2542, an inspection satellite, released a second smaller spacecraft. The two Russian craft have been orbiting in the same plane as a satellite operated by the National Reconnaissance Office called USA 245, which has been in space since 2013. The two Russian spacecraft...

Challenge Monument Designation in the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone

Challenge Monument Designation in the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone

The Antiquities Act The Antiquities Act was signed into law by Theodore Roosevelt in 1906. The Act gives the President discretion to declare historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest that are owned or controlled by the federal government, to be national monuments. The Monument The Act has been used by Presidents to create 158 national monuments. These include the Grand Canyon National Monument established by President Theodore Roosevelt, the Hanford Reach National Monument established by President Clinton, and the...

Eliminate Controversial Plan to Limit GI Bill Benefits Transferability

Eliminate Controversial Plan to Limit GI Bill Benefits Transferability

Earlier this year, military officials announced plans to change education benefits rules to prevent service members with more than 16-years of service from transferring their post-9/11 GI Bill benefits to their spouses or children. Under the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which passed the House on Wednesday, December 11, the controversial plan would be completely eliminated. The legislation, which passed the House by a 377-48 vote, includes language prohibiting the Defense Department “from imposing a general limit on transferability [of education benefits] based on the number of...

Apple Refuses Government’s Request to Unlock Pensacola Shooting

Apple Refuses Government’s Request to Unlock Pensacola Shooting

On January 13, 2020, Attorney General William Barr labeled the December 2019 attack by a Saudi aviation student at a naval air station in Pensacola, FL, an act of terrorism. AG Barr and FBI Deputy Director David Bowdich publicly requested Apple Inc. to unlock two iPhones belonging to Mohammed Saeed Alshamrani, with the hopes that doing so will provide more information about his radicalization. AG Barr called on Apple to find a way to crack the encrypted phones in a high-profile request that escalated a battle between tech firms and the government over how to best balance digital security with...

Defense Department Releases Unified Cybersecurity Standard for Contractors

Defense Department Releases Unified Cybersecurity Standard for Contractors

Thousands of smaller defense contractors face new cybersecurity standards that will soon be a cost of doing business as the Pentagon seeks to prevent hacking and theft from countries such as China and Iran. The Department of Defense (the “DoD”) plans to release the standards at the end of January 2020 as it rushes toward a new requirement for universal auditing of contractors’ cyber safeguards by this summer. The military’s vast commercial supply chain has emerged as a critical national security weakness, and a total of about 300,000 contractors will be subject to the cyber auditing and...

The Importance of Lockout/Tagout In The Brewery Industry

The Importance of Lockout/Tagout In The Brewery Industry

The control of potentially hazardous energy by using a Lockout/Tagout (LOTO) system is one of the most common violations in the workplace. In 2019, LOTO is the fifth most frequently citation issued by the United States Dept. of Labor's Office of Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). Failure to give proper attention to LOTO is a serious concern because it can lead to a negative impact on the health of your employees and your business. There were over 5,000 on the job fatalities in 2017, which equates to an average of 14 deaths each day. The health of your business and employees provide...

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Rocky Mountain Helium Wins Case Against Bureau of Land Management

Rocky Mountain Helium Wins Case Against Bureau of Land Management

Rocky Mountain Helium, LLC (“Rocky Mountain”) filed a legal action against the U.S. government for breach of a Settlement Agreement. The dispute involved requirements in the Settlement Agreement between the Bureau of Land Management (“BLM”) and Rocky Mountain. The United States Court of Federal Claims granted summary judgment in favor of Rocky Mountain.