In Tuesday's environmental law news, the Indonesia Ministry of Environment released a study on Monday that again exonerated the Newmont Mining Corporation of charges that they polluted the Buyat Bay. This ongoing story, most recently reported in JURIST's Paper Chase here, is pitting the Indonesia police forces, who currently have five Newmont officials detained, against scientific studies first completed by the WHO and now by their own government. It is not known when or if the Newmont officials will be released. The Washington Post has more.... In other news, to ensure that water quality is in accordance with the Clean Water Act[PDF] around Columbus OH, the USDA has announced the Ohio Scioto River Watershed Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP), a $207 million federal-state initiative. The program will pay qualifying farmers in a 70,000 acre area of the Scioto River watershed to change their land from cropland to native grasses, tress and vegetation for 14 or 15 years. Payments are made through the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) as authorized by the Food Security Act of 1985 (as amended). The change is expected to improve public drinking water, restore wetlands, and increase wildlife habitat and numbers in the area. The USDA press release is here. Background on the program can be found here.... The US Fish and Wildlife Service seeks comments regarding an economic analysis of a proposed rule[PDF] to designate about 5800 acres off the coast of Los Angeles CA as critical habitat for the Riverside fairy shrimp (Streptocephalus woottoni), under the auspices of the Endangered Species Act. Comments will be accepted until November 18 and can be made here.