Environmental brief ~ Chemical company charged with asbestos cover-up

[JURIST] In Tuesday's environmental law news, chemical manufacturer W.R. Grace and Co. [corporate website] and some of its executive employees have been charged by federal prosecutors with 3 counts of violating the Clean Air Act [EPA text], 4 counts of obstruction of justice, 2 counts of wire fraud and 1 count of conspiracy. The charges stem from an investigation into asbestos pollution at a Grace-owned mine in Libby, Montana, which is now a Superfund site. W.R. Grace has issued a statement on the indictment [PDF]. The Washington Post has more.

In other news,

  • The Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement [official website] (OSM) seeks comments on proposed amendments [text] to the Illinois regulatory program under the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act [text] (SMCRA). Among other changes, the amendments will clarify the requirements for subsidence control and update procedures for relocating or closing public roads. Comments can be made here until March 10. Requests for a public hearing on the amendments can be made here until February 23.

  • The OSM also seeks comments on proposed amendments [text] to the Iowa regulatory program under SMCRA [text] that would remove one of the ways to gauge revegetation success. Comments can be made here until March 10. Requests for a public hearing can be made here until February 23.

  • The National Marine Fisheries Service [official website] seeks comments on the proposed 2005 Atlantic bluefish fishery regulations [text]. The agency's rule follows the regulations prepared by the Mid-Atlantic Fishery Management Council. Comments can be made here until February 23.

 

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