2019 Villanova Environmental Law Journal Blank Rome LLP Symposium, 2/8

"Strategies to Address Uncertainty and Transition in Environmental Law"


Environmental law, like many other regulatory areas, is rife with uncertainties, which are exacerbated by political transitions. The Obama Administration implemented significant regulatory changes, many of which the Trump Administration is now attempting to reverse. Courts have set aside regulations issued under both Administrations, adding to the uncertainty. Meanwhile, emerging problems, such as concerns about the chemical perfluorooctane sulfonate in groundwater, are generating public concern and litigation, without clear regulatory guidance. 

At the 2019 Villanova Environmental Law Journal Blank Rome LLP Symposium, representatives from private practice, government agencies, and nonprofit organizations will discuss strategies they use to manage regulatory uncertainty and transition for their clients.

The symposium takes place on Friday, February 8, 2019 from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Laurence E. Hirsch '71 Classroom (Room 101) of the Villanova University Charles Widger School of Law (299 North Spring Mill Road, Villanova). This program is approved by the Pennsylvania Continuing Legal Education board for 3.5 substantive CLE credits.







9:00 – 10:00 a.m.: Opening Remarks

John Cruden, Principal, Beveridge & Diamond, former Assistant Attorney General for the Environment & Natural Resources Division


10:00 – 10:55 a.m.: Waters of the United States

Alice Baker, Staff Attorney, PennFuture

John Cruden, Principal, Beveridge & Diamond, former Assistant Attorney General for the Environment & Natural Resources Division

Ken Warren, Partner, Warren Environmental Counsel LLC


11:05 – 11:55 a.m.: Climate Change Regulation

Robert Altenburg, Director, PennFuture Energy Center, PennFuture

Debbie Mans, Deputy Commissioner, New Jersey Depatment of Environmental Protection

Kathleen Robertson, Senior Manager, Environmental Policy & Wholesale Market Development, Exelon


11:55 a.m. – 12:45 p.m.: Contaminants of Emerging Concern

Diana Silva, Partner, Manko Gold Katcher Fox LLP

Kevin Long, Principal Consultant, Terraphase Engineering

Candee Wilde '14, Associate, Greenberg Traurig LLP


Waters of the United States

Waters of the United States (WOTUS) Rulemaking: Rulemaking Process, Envtl. Prot. Agency.


Definition of "Waters of the United States": Rule Status and Litigation Update, Envtl. Prot. Agency.


Clean Water Rule Definition of “Waters of the United States” 80 Fed. Reg. 37,054 (June 29, 2015).


Definition of ‘‘Waters of the United States’’—Recodification of Pre-Existing Rules 81 Fed. Reg. 33,250 (May 25, 2016).


Pre-publication Version of Revised Definition of “Waters of the United States” Proposed Rule


Rapanos v. United States, 547 U.S. 718 (2006).


Solid Waste Agency of N. Cook Cty. v. United States Army Corps of Engineers, 531 U.S. 161 (2001).


United States v. Riverside Bayview Homes, Inc., 474 U.S. 122 (1985).


Supreme Court Evaluates Judicial Review of Clean Water Act Jurisdictional Determinations, Marten L. (April 20, 2016),https://www.martenlaw.com/newsletter/20160420-cwa-jurisdictional-determinations.

Definition of “Waters of the United States” Under the Clean Water Act, Envtl. Prot. Agency, https://www.epa.gov/cwa-404/definition-waters-united-states-under-clean-water-act.


Climate Change Regulations

Clean Power Plan Proposed Rule: Federal Plan Requirements for Greenhouse Gas Emissions From Electric Utility Generating Units Constructed on or Before January 8, 2014; Model Trading Rules; Amendments to Framework Regulations 80 Fed. Reg. 64,966 (Oct. 23, 2015).


Clean Power Plan Guidelines: Carbon Pollution Emission Guidelines for Existing Stationary Sources: Electric Utility Generating Units 80 Fed. Reg. 64,662 (Oct. 23, 2015).


Promoting Energy Independence and Economic Growth: Exec. Order No. 13,783, 82 Fed. Reg. 16,093 (Mar. 31, 2017).


Withdrawal of Clean Power Plan Proposed Rule: Withdrawal of Proposed Rules: Federal Plan Requirements for Greenhouse Gas Emissions From Electric Utility Generating Units Constructed on or Before January 8, 2014; Model Trading Rules; Amendments to Framework Regulations; and Clean Energy Incentive Program Design Details 82 Fed. Reg. 16,144 (Apr. 3, 2017).


Gary Bryner, The Rapid Evolution of Climate Change Law, 20 Utah B. J. 2, 22-26 (2007).


Yumehiko Hoshijima, Presidential Administration and the Durability of Climate--Consciousness, 127 Yale L. J. 1, 170-244 (2017).


Cale Jaffe, Melting the Polarization Around Climate Change, 30 Georgetown Envtl. L. Rev. 1, 455-97 (2018).


William H. Rodgers, Jr., Andrea K. Rodgers, Commentary: The Revival of Climate Change Science in U.S. Court, 6 Wash. J. of Envtl. L. & Pol'y 2, 533-41 (2016).


J. David, Trump Moves to Let States Regulate Coal Plant Emissions, NPR (Aug. 21, 2018), https://www.npr.org/2018/08/21/639396683/trump-moves-to-let-states-regulate-coal-plant-emissions.


Emerging Contaminants Panel

PFAS What You Need to Know Infographic, Envtl. Prot. Agency.


Overview of Federal PFAS Laws


Lifetime Health Advisories and Health Effects Support Documents for Perfluorooctanoic Acid and Perfluorooctane Sulfonate 81 Fed. Reg. 33,250 (May 25, 2016).


Long-Chain Perfluoroalkyl Carboxylate and Perfluoroalkyl Sulfonate Chemical Substances; Significant New Use Rule 80 Fed. Reg. 2,855 (Jan. 21, 2015) https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-2015-01-21/pdf/2015-00636.pdf

Envtl. Prot. Agency, Technical Fact Sheet: Draft Toxicity Assessments for GenX Chemicals and PFBS (2018).


PFAS: What They Are, Pa Dep’t of Envtl. Prot. (last visited Jan. 31, 2019)


Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) Action Team: Pa. Exec. Order No. 2018-08 (Sept. 19, 2018).


Tom Wolf & Patrick McDonnell, Introduction to Per and Poly Fluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) (2018).


Contaminants of Emerging Concern, N.J. Dep’t of Envtl. Prot.


U.S. Dep’t of Health and Human Servs., Toxicological Profile for Perfluoroalkyls: Draft for Public Comment (June 2018).


Nikki Delude Roy, David Gold, Rachel Jacobson, Heidi Ruckriegle, Regulatory Challenges Posed By Emerging Contaminants, 20 Water Resources Committee Newsletter 1, 1-5 (2018).


Matthew Thurlow, Russ Abell, Stephen Zemba, PFAS Contamination Remains a Hot-Button Issue: Overview of Recent Regulatory, Litigation, and Technical Developments, Am. B. Ass’n, (Sept. 21, 2018), https://www.americanbar.org/groups/environment_energy_resources/publications/eltt/20171215-pfas-contamination/.

Basic Information on PFAS, Envtl. Prot. Agency, https://www.epa.gov/pfas/basic-information-pfas (last visited Feb. 1, 2019).