President's weekly report — June 3, 2016

June 02, 2016 | By JOHN GROEN

Supreme Court Victory! The Supreme Court gave Pacific Legal Foundation a resounding victory on Monday in United States Army Corps of Engineers v. Hawkes. The unanimous Court held that a Corps of Engineers’ Jurisdictional Determination (i.e. wetlands delineation) is immediately reviewable in court and subject to challenge. For the first time s ...


Plan Bay Area argument set for May 31

May 23, 2016 | By JONATHAN WOOD

Next Tuesday, May 31, the California Court of Appeal will hear argument over the legality of Plan Bay Area — the plan to restrict future development in all but a tiny fraction of the already incredibly expensive Bay Area. The Court will consider whether regional agencies were free to ignore the plan’s significant environmental consequen ...


California high court rejects "Reverse CEQA"

December 21, 2015 | By DAMIEN SCHIFF

Last week, the California Supreme Court issued another major decision under the California Environmental Quality Act. In California Building Industry Association v. Bay Area Air Quality Management District, the high court ruled that, absent a specific statutory exception, the Act does not require an analysis of the environment’s impacts on a ...


Greenhouse gases complicate CEQA

December 03, 2015 | By DAMIEN SCHIFF

On Monday, the California Supreme Court issued its decision in Center for Biological Diversity v. California Department of Fish & Wildlife.  The ruling overturns an important section of a voluminous environmental impact report prepared, under the California Environmental Quality Act, for the proposed Newhall Ranch development.  The project ...


President's weekly report — August 28, 2015

August 28, 2015 | By ROB RIVETT

WOTUS halted! A federal district court judge in North Dakota enjoined with this order EPA from enforcing it’s new breathtakingly illegal Waters of the United States rule.  The court found that the harm to the states who had sued was potentially considerable and that there was a likelihood of success in the merits.  This result … ...


President's weekly report — March 5, 2015

March 06, 2015 | By ROB RIVETT

Environment — Victory for common sense in permitting reviews The California Supreme Court issued this opinion in Berkeley Hillside Preservation v. City of Berkeley Hillside Preservation v. City of Berkeley, a case dealing with environmental reviews under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA.) That statute, much like its federal anal ...


CEQA : Special interest groups’ favorite toy

March 12, 2014 | By JONATHAN WILLIAMS

Union activists in San Francisco recently filed suit to block Google’s commuter buses from stopping at City bus stations– a privilege for which Google pays the City handsomely. Why might activists use an environmental regulation to block buses that eliminate at least 45 million vehicle miles and 761,000 tons of greenhouse gas emissions a ye ...


Freakonomics on CEQA's environmental counterproductivity and NIMBYism

November 25, 2013 | By JONATHAN WOOD

If you’re interested in CEQA reform, give a listen to this week’s Freakonomics podcast featuring Prof. Ed Glaeser. He discusses a number of environmental policies where messaging has outpaced the green credentials of policy, leading not only to waste, but sometimes actually worsening the environment. What example did he give as his case ...


The bay area needs fewer development restrictions, not more

October 14, 2013 | By JONATHAN WOOD

As regular readers know, PLF is challenging a recently adopted plan that will restrict most future development in the bay area to 5% of the regions land area. Our lawsuit, filed on behalf of Bay Area Citizens—a non-profit organized by local residents—challenges the process by which the plan was adopted. Regional bureaucrats sold the pla ...