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Beveridge & Diamond’s 100 lawyers in seven U.S. offices focus on environmental and natural resource law, litigation and dispute resolution. We help clients around the world resolve critical environmental and sustainability issues relating to their products, facilities, and operations. 

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Showing 45 posts in International Environmental Law. View our practice description for International Environmental Law.

Top Environmental Authority in China Proposes Amendment to the Solid Waste Law

On July 11, 2018, China’s Ministry of Ecology and Environment (“MEE”) released a draft proposal to amend the country’s solid waste statute.[1]  Among other changes, the draft proposed to restrict solid waste releases from industrial facilities under the pollutant emission permit program, prohibit all solid waste imports into China, require mandatory contracts between waste generators and third-party handlers, and increase penalties for violations. The deadline for submitting comments to MEE is August 18, 2018. Read More ›

What’s New with China’s Chemical Import and Export Regulatory Programs

In 2017, China updated its new chemical registration program and toxic chemical import and export control program and introduced a new chemical program – chemical substances subject to prioritized control.[1]  This alert provides an overview of China’s environmental and safety regulations on chemical products in light of these updates.  Read More ›

USDA Announces New Phytosanitary Requirements for Soybean Exports to China

On December 27, 2017, the United States Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (USDA-APHIS) announced a new procedure for U.S. soybean exporters to comply with China’s phytosanitary import requirements and ensure the continued export of U.S. soybeans.  Soybean growers and exporters in the United States should understand the new procedure, which went into effect on January 1, 2018 and applies to both bulk and container shipments of raw, unprocessed soybeans to China. Read More ›

USDA Issues Annual Agricultural Biotechnology Report for China

On December 29, 2017, the United States Department of Agriculture’s Foreign Agricultural Service (USDA-FAS) issued its annual report on the status of agricultural biotechnology in China.  According to the new report, which outlines China’s recent trade, policy, and marketing activities in connection with both plant and animal biotechnology, China has still not approved any major genetically engineered (GE) food or feed crops for cultivation, notwithstanding pledges it made in 2016 to advance commercialization of new domestic types of Bt corn, Bt cotton, and herbicide-resistant soy by 2020.  Particularly given China’s status as the largest importer of GE crops and one of the largest producers of GE cotton in the world, the new report is important to agriculture and biotechnology stakeholders in the United States and around the world.  Read More ›

TCFD Report Will Shape Future Expectations for Climate-Related Financial Disclosures

On June 29, 2017, the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD or Task Force) released its Final Report providing recommendations on voluntary climate-related financial disclosures.  The recommendations, developed by an industry-led task force of both users and preparers of disclosures, are intended to support the production of more consistent and clear financial disclosure of climate-related risks across sectors for use by investors, lenders, and insurers.  Most G20 countries have existing legal frameworks that require the disclosure of material risks in financial reports.  Beyond legal mandates, investors are increasingly focused on environmental, social, and governance (ESG) factors in evaluating potential investments and future business risk.  While the Task Force’s recommendations are voluntary and independent of the environmental sustainability disclosure standards currently under review in the U.S. by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) (see Beveridge & Diamond alert on the SEC concept release), the recommendations will impact the approach many publicly traded companies take to data collection and climate risk reporting over the long-term. Read More ›

Minamata Convention to Take Effect in August, Restricting the Production and Usage of Mercury Worldwide

On May 17, the European Union and seven EU member states ratified the Minamata Convention on Mercury, pushing past the 50-state threshold needed for its entry into force. The treaty – the most recent of the global multilateral environmental agreements – will now enter into force (i.e., become legally binding) on August 16, 2017. The United States ratified the Convention (as an executive agreement, without the advice and consent of the Senate) in 2013; in contrast to most of the recent multilateral environmental agreements, therefore, the United States will participate in this agreement as a full party.  Read More ›

New Developments and Uncertainties for Conflict Minerals Disclosure

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC or Commission) Division of Corporate Finance issued a new statement adding some uncertainty to company obligations and enforcement exposure under the SEC conflict minerals rule ahead of the May 31, 2017 filing deadline.  The statement is one of several moving pieces in an unprecedented wave of activity on conflict minerals in recent weeks.  Companies should review these developments and their approach to meeting legal obligations imposed by the SEC’s implementation of Section 1502 of Dodd Frank, alongside the broader expectations of customers, activists and investors. Read More ›

Impacts of the 2016 U.S. Election on Environmental Law, Policy, and Enforcement

The 2016 election results will have wide-ranging impacts on the future direction of environmental law, policy, and enforcement in the U.S.  With 100 lawyers in offices around the U.S. focused on environmental and natural resource law and litigation, Beveridge & Diamond helps clients navigate legal and business risks arising from this evolving legal landscape. Read More ›

EPA Revises Hazardous Waste Import-Export Rules

On October 28, 2016, the Administrator of the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) signed a rule finalizing significant modifications to the requirements governing the export and import of hazardous waste.  The rule changes will go into effect on December 31, 2016, although, as discussed below, certain requirements will be phased in over time.  The changes will affect transboundary shipments currently subject to 40 C.F.R. Part 262 Subpart H (regulating hazardous waste shipments for recovery between the United States and countries that are members of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) other than Mexico and Canada), as well as shipments currently subject to Subparts E and F (regulating all other hazardous waste imports and exports).  The modifications make certain substantive changes to the requirements of Subpart H, as well as expand the scope of that subpart to cover transboundary shipments currently subject to Subparts E and F.  The modifications are largely consistent with EPA’s October 2015 proposed rule. Read More ›

New TSCA Requirements for Chemical Importers

Companies planning to ship chemical-based products to the United States should have a basic understanding of the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA),[1] the key U.S. chemicals law.  That law was substantially amended in June 2016.[2]  While a foreign entity is not subject to TSCA, its products generally cannot enter the U.S. without TSCA compliance by its U.S. trading partner who imports the products.  This article presents an overview of TSCA as amended from the perspective of an importer.  It addresses the scope of TSCA; who must comply; import certification; Inventory requirements; significant new use rules; prioritization, evaluation, and risk management; testing requirements; reporting and recordkeeping requirements; protection of confidential information; new requirements on formaldehyde in composite wood products; and enforcement and penalties. Read More ›