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Administrative Watch: Environmental Groups File Suit Over Absence of Regulation of Oil & Gas Waste

On May 4, 2016, seven environmental groups followed through on a prior threat to sue the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) by filing a lawsuit against the EPA in a bid to force the agency to develop tailored rules for the disposal, storage, transportation, and handling of oil and gas waste under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) Subtitle D solid waste program.  In an effort to trigger movement on the issue, the environmentalists had previously sent the EPA a 60-day Notice of Intent to Sue in August 2015; however, according to the environmentalists, the agency did not formally respond to the Notice.  The Complaint, filed with the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, alleges that the agency has not within the statutorily required three-year timeframe (1) reviewed and, where necessary, revised RCRA’s Subtitle D solid waste regulations for oil and gas waste, and (2) reviewed and/or revised its guidelines for state solid waste management plans for oil and gas waste.

For more information, read our Administrative Watch.