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Preview: LexisNexis® Mealey's™ Pollution Liability Legal News

LexisNexis® Mealey's™ Pollution Liability Legal News



Headline Pollution Liability Legal News from LexisNexis®



 



Judge Suggests Severing Claims Over Contaminated Sites In Other Jurisdictions
HANNIBAL, Mo. - A federal judge in Missouri on Nov. 28 refused to dismiss a defendant company's counterclaims seeking indemnification for contamination cleanup at three sites it purchased from a plaintiff company's predecessor in 1980 but suggested to the parties that the claims be severed due to possible issues with judicial efficiency (Cooper Industries LLC v. Spectrum Brands Inc., No. 16 CV 39, E.D. Mo.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 163443).



Montana High Court Denies Government's Request For Oversized Amicus Brief
HELENA, Mont. - A panel of the Montana Supreme Court on Nov. 29 denied the federal government's request to file an oversized amicus curiae brief in a dispute over whether a trial court judge erred in finding that the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) barred property owners' claims for restoration when their proposed remediation plan was not approved by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, finding that the case was not so extraordinarily complex to allow for an extended brief (Atlantic Richfield Company v. Montana Second Judicial District Court, Silver Bow County, No. 16-0555, Mont. Sup.; 2016 Mont. LEXIS 1008).



Judge Dismisses Companies' Clean Air Act Suit Over Lack Of Jurisdiction
NEW ORLEANS - A federal judge in Louisiana on Nov. 21 dismissed a lawsuit brought by Nucor Steel Louisiana LLC and Consolidated Environmental Management Inc. contending that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency violated the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) and Clean Air Act (CAA) when issuing orders in 2012 and 2014 that objected to permits they received, finding that the court lacked jurisdiction over the plaintiff companies' claims (Consolidated Environmental Management Inc., et al. v. Regina McCarthy, et al., No. 16-1432, E.D. La.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 161769).



Appeals Court Says Owner Could Be Liable Under Participation Theory
CHILLICOTHE, Ohio - An Ohio appeals panel on Nov. 10 reversed a trial judge's ruling awarding summary judgment to the owner of a trucking company accused of excessive emissions, holding that the defendant could be liable for allegedly participating in violations of the Clean Air Act and Ohio air pollution laws (State of Ohio, ex. rel. Michael DeWine v. Marietta Industrial Enterprises Inc., et al., No. 15CA33, Ohio App., 4th Dist.; 2016 Ohio App. LEXIS 4725).



U.S. Steel Agrees To Spend $4.9M To Resolve Emissions Suit
HAMMOND, Ind. - United States Steel Corp. (U.S. Steel) on Nov. 22 stated in a consent decree filed in Indiana federal court that it would pay a $2.2 million civil penalty, spend $1.9 million on seven environmental projects and spend $800,000 to remove contaminated transformers at two of its facilities to resolve a Clean Air Act lawsuit brought by the federal government, Indiana, Illinois and the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (United States of America, et al. v. United States Steel Corp., No. 12-cv-304, N.D. Ind.).



5th Circuit: Franchisors Cannot Seek Lost Royalties Under BP Settlement
NEW ORLEANS - A Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Dec. 1 affirmed a federal judge in Louisiana's ruling that three franchisors that are not based in the Gulf of Mexico cannot seek to obtain lost franchisee royalties during the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico following the explosion of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig, finding that they are not included in the terms of the economic and property damages settlement agreement (Claimant ID 100197593, et al. v. BP Exploration & Production Inc., et al., No. 16-30283, 5th Cir.).



Genuine Issues Preclude Ruling On Contract Issues, Judge Finds
PHOENIX - A federal judge in Arizona on Nov. 21 denied cross-motions for partial summary judgment on breach of contract claims in a suit over indemnification for cleanup from contamination from underground storage tank (UST) leaks, finding that too many issues of material fact exist as to whether the discovery rule or tolling doctrines apply under Arizona law (Greyhound Lines Incorporated v. Viad Corporation, No. CV-15-01820-PHX-DGC, D. Ariz.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 160960).



Plaintiffs In Suit Over Mercedes-Benz's Emissions Lack Standing, Judge Says
NEWARK, N.J. - Plaintiffs in a class action suit alleging that Mercedes-Benz USA LLC misrepresented the efficiency of its BlueTec Clean Diesel vehicles lack standing to bring their action against the auto maker, a federal judge in New Jersey ruled Dec. 6, finding that the plaintiffs failed to show that the advertisements they allegedly relied on contained any false statements (In re: Mercedes-Benz Emissions Litigation, No. 16-881, D. N.J.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 168535).



Judge Trims Some Defenses Raised By Scrap Metal Company In Runoff Suit
BANGOR, Maine - A scrap metal company accused by the federal government of violating the terms of a permit allowing for discharges of storm water runoff can challenge the enforceability of the Clean Water Act (CWA), a federal judge in Maine ruled Nov. 10 in granting in part and denying in part the government's motion to strike 23 affirmative defenses raised by the company (United States of America v. Kennebec Scrap Iron Inc., No. 16-cv-191-GZS, D. Maine; 2016 U. S. Dist. LEXIS 156004).



Judge: Industry Groups Cannot Intervene In Waste Storage Regulations Suit
WASHINGTON, D.C. - A motion filed by industry groups seeking to intervene in a lawsuit brought by a number of environmental groups over the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's alleged failure to update oil and gas waste regulations was denied by a federal judge in the District of Columbia on Nov. 18, after he found that the industrial groups lack standing (Environmental Integrity Project, et al. v. Gina McCarthy, No. 16-842, D. D.C.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 159892).



Sierra Club: BNSF Railway To Spend $1M To Clean Up Coal Dust
SEATTLE - The Sierra Club announced on its website on Nov. 15 that the environmental group had reached a settlement in principle with BNSF Railway Co. that would require the company to spend $1 million on conservation and restoration projects in Washington and clean up and remove coal dust from areas near waterways where the company's trains carry coal to resolve a lawsuit in Washington federal court (Sierra Club, et al. v. BNSF Railway Company, No. C13-967, W.D. Wash.).



Parties Debate MTBE-Tainted Groundwater Case Before 2nd Circuit
NEW YORK - Attorneys for oil and gasoline companies, as well as those representing a California water district, on Dec. 5 presented oral arguments before the Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals debating the applicability of a res judicata order in a groundwater contamination case involving methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) (In Re: Methyl Tertiary Butyl Ether Products Liability Litigation: Orange County Water District v. Texaco Refining and Marketing Inc. n/ka TMR Company, No. 15-3934, 2nd Cir.).



Princess Cruise Lines Agrees To Pay $40M Penalty, Plead Guilty Over Discharges
MIAMI - Princess Cruise Lines Ltd., a subsidiary of Carnival Corp., on Dec. 1 agreed to plead guilty in Florida federal court to seven felony charges for illegally discharging contaminated water from its Caribbean Princess vessel and pay a $40 million criminal penalty for its actions, which included attempts to deliberately cover up its actions (United States of America v. Princess Cruise Lines Ltd., No. 16-20897-CR-SEITZ, S.D. Fla.).



3 Companies To Spend $9M On Interim Cleanup Of North Carolina Superfund Site
ASHEVILLE, N.C. - CTS Corp., Mills Gap Road Associates and Northrop Grumman Systems Corp. on Nov. 22 filed a consent decree with the federal government in North Carolina federal court in which they agreed to spend $9 million on interim remediation of groundwater contaminated with trichloroethene (TCE) (United States of America v. CTS Corporation, et al., No. 16-cv-380, W.D. N.C.).



Panel Denies Rehearing, Says Refinery Owner Not Covered Under Policy
NEW ORLEANS - The Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on Nov. 29 denied a petition for rehearing after determining that a refinery owner seeking help with environmental cleanup costs under its parent company's insurance policy should have and could have discovered that it was not named as an insured under the policy simply by looking at the insurance policy sometime within the six years of the policy's issuance (AIG Specialty Insurance Company, f/k/a Chartis Specialty Insurance Company v. Tesoro Corporation, No. 15-50953, 5th Cir.).



Insured Failed To Timely Notify Insurer Of Polluted Sites, Panel Majority Says
CHICAGO - The majority of the First District Illinois Appellate Court on Nov. 21 determined that a trial court did not err when it granted an insurer's motion for summary judgment because the evidence shows that the insured failed to give the insurer timely notice of pollution at two sites for which it seeks coverage (The Travelers Indemnity Co. v. Amsted Industries Inc., et al., No. 15-2495, Ill. App., 1st Dist., Div. 1; 2016 Ill. App. Unpub. LEXIS 2513).



Exception To Policy Provision Does Not Apply In Oil Spill Coverage Dispute, Panel Says
BEAUMONT, Texas - An exception to a policy's joint venture provision does not apply to provide coverage to an insured seeking coverage for damages incurred as a result of the Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico because a monetary judgment was not entered against the insured as required by the provision's second exception, the Ninth District Texas Court of Appeals said Nov. 17 in reversing a trial court's ruling (Houston Casualty Co., et al., v. Anadarko Petroleum Corp., et al., No. 09-14-00459, Texas App., 9th Dist.; 2016 Tex. App. LEXIS 12354).



5th Circuit Orders Judge To Provide Basis For Clean Water Act Ruling
NEW ORLEANS - A federal judge in Texas was ordered on Nov. 7 to rewrite a decision awarding summary judgment to defendants accused of violating the Clean Water Act (CWA), after a Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel found that the eight-page opinion was "bereft of citations to record evidence" and that it "provides this court with virtually no guidance as to how the court applied the facts to the law" (United States of America v. Thomas E. Lipar, et al., No. 15-20625, 5th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 20095).



Judge Declines To Rule If Emissions From Rail Cars Violate Clean Water Act
SEATTLE - A federal judge in Washington on Oct. 25 refused to find BNSF Railway Co. liable for violating the Clean Water Act (CWA) when coal dust emissions from open railroad cars land on the ground during transportation, finding that there is no scientific proof showing how the dust can enter waterways in the state (Sierra Club, et al. v. BNSF Railway Company, No. C13-967, W.D. Wash.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 147786).



Meat Distributor To Pay $43,000 Over Excessive Stormwater Discharges
LENEXA, Kan. - A regional office of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced Oct. 13 that an Iowa-based meat and poultry distributor has agreed to pay $43,000 for excessive discharges of stormwater into Hecker Creek.



Judge Says ASARCO Can Intervene In CERCLA Suit, But Not Seek Discovery
TULSA, Okla. - A federal judge in Oklahoma on Oct. 27 ruled that ASARCO could intervene in a lawsuit brought by the federal government and state of Oklahoma against two companies accused of contributing to contamination at the Tar Creek Superfund site because a proposed settlement between the parties could affect ASARCO's ability to seek contribution under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA) (United States of America, et al. v. Doe Run Resources Corporation, et al., No. 15-CV-0663-CVE-TLW, N.D. Okla.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 148959).



Judge Dismisses Suit Over Oil Spill Brought By Chinese Fishermen
HOUSTON - A lawsuit brought by 30 Chinese fishermen over an oil spill in the Bohai Sea in June 2011 was dismissed by a federal judge in Texas on Nov. 8, who ruled that "this is a dispute among three Chinese parties about Chinese waters, it belongs in China" (Peiqing Cong, et al. v. ConocoPhillips Company, No. H-12-cv-1976, S.D. Texas; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 154508).



Volkswagen Emissions MDL Judge Enters Final Approval Of $14.7B Settlement
SAN FRANCISCO - A federal judge in California on Oct. 25 granted plaintiffs' request for final approval of a $14.7 billion settlement to resolve allegations over Volkswagen AG's installation of a defeat device designed to cheat emissions tests and deceive state and federal regulators, ruling that the settlement is fair and reasonable (In re: Volkswagen "Clean Diesel" Marketing, Sales Practices and Products Liability Litigation, MDL 2672, Case No. 15-md-2672, N.D. Calif.).



Court Denies Petition To Review Ruling Denying Dismissal Of Counties' Suits
AUSTIN, Texas - A Texas appellate panel on Nov. 4 denied a petition for interlocutory appeal filed by the state of Texas of a ruling denying its request to dismiss lawsuits brought by 18 counties accusing Volkswagen of violating the Texas Clean Air Act (TCAA) by installing devices designed to cheat emissions tests, finding that a review of the decision would not materially advance the litigation (In re: Volkswagen Clean Diesel Litigation: Texas Clean Air Enforcement Actions, No. 03-16-00673-CV, Texas App., 3rd Dist.; 2016 Texas App. LEXIS 11978).



New Jersey Appeals Court Finds Settlement With Environmental Agency Was Not Final
TRENTON, N.J. - The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) did not breach the terms of a settlement agreement with Cumberland Farms Inc. when naming the company as a defendant in lawsuits over contamination caused by the gasoline additive methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) in New York federal court, a New Jersey appeals court panel ruled Nov. 2, after finding that the agreement was not final and enforceable (Cumberland Farms Inc. v. New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, No. A-4355-14T2, N.J. Super., App. Div.; 2016 N.J. Super., LEXIS 139).



Dismissal Of Contamination Suit Too Drastic A Sanction, New Jersey Panel Rules
TRENTON, N.J. - A New Jersey judge's decision to dismiss a suit over contamination at a property that formerly housed printing operations as a sanction for the plaintiff's spoliation of evidence was too drastic, a state appeals panel ruled Oct. 31, holding that the lower court failed to consider the possibility of lesser sanctions, such as an adverse inference (18-01 Pollitt Drive LLC v. Harvey Engel, et al., No. A-4833-13T3, N.J. Super, App. Div.; 2016 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 2360).



Agency Acted Properly When Fining Company Over Site Remediation, Court Says
TRENTON, N.J. - The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) did not err when ordering a company to pay $40,500 in fines for failing to remediate a site that it previously used for manufacturing wood-working materials, a New Jersey appeals court panel ruled Nov. 3, finding that the evidence shows that the company failed to comply with the Industrial Site Recovery Act (ISRA) (New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection v. Hood Finishing Products Inc., No. A-3955-14T1, N.J. Super., App. Div.; 2016 N.J. Super. Unpub. LEXIS 2407).



Company To Pay $1.6M, Transfer Stocks To Reimburse EPA For Cleanup Costs
PRESCOTT, Ariz. - WestRock LP on Nov. 1 agreed to pay the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency $1.6 million and transfer nearly $3 million in stock to the agency to partially reimburse it for cleaning up contamination at a former wood treating plant in Prescott, according to a docket entry in Arizona federal court (United States of America v. WestRock LP, No.16-CV-08247, D. Ariz.).



EPA: Fiber Products Maker To Pay $150,000 For RCRA Violations
BOSTON - A regional office of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced Oct. 27 that Lowell, Mass.-based Specialty Materials Inc. agreed to pay $150,000 to resolve allegations that it violated the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA).



California Federal Judge Denies Motion To Dismiss In Sewage Spill Coverage Suit
LOS ANGELES - A California federal judge on Oct. 31 refused to dismiss an insurer's claims against its insured and two underlying plaintiffs in a dispute over coverage for a sewage spill after determining that federal jurisdiction is proper as the amount in controversy exceeds the federal jurisdictional requirement (Travelers Property Casualty Company of America v. Mountain Movers Engineering Contactors Inc., No. 16-2127, S.D. Calif.).



Insurer Argues Settlement Agreement Barred Claims For Cleanup Costs
CINCINNATI - An insurer argues in a Nov. 1 response brief to the Sixth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals that a district court correctly found that a 1994 settlement agreement bars coverage for any future claims arising out of coverage for environmental cleanup costs incurred by the insured at a Superfund site in Texas (Arrowood Indemnity Company v. Lubrizol Corporation, No. 16-3463, 6th Cir.).



Insurer Says Federal Judge Erred In Finding Sewage Is Not Excluded From Coverage
MONTGOMERY, Ala. - An insurer on Oct. 20 moved for reconsideration or, in the alternative, for certification of interlocutory appeal, arguing that an Alabama federal judge erroneously applied a total pollution exclusion as if it were a qualified pollution exclusion and in doing so, incorrectly determined that the total pollution exclusion cannot be asserted as a bar to coverage for two underlying lawsuits alleging injuries from sewage exposure (Evanston Insurance Co. v. J&J Cable Construction LLC, et al., No. 15-506, M.D. Ala.).



Insurer Argues That Res Judicata Bars Plaintiffs From Collecting Damages
INDIANAPOLIS - An insurer filed a motion for summary judgment on Oct. 14 in an Indiana federal court, arguing that it has no duty to defend its insured against claims arising out of environmental contamination because the plaintiffs' claims are barred by res judicata (Carmine Greene, et al. v. Kenneth Will, et al., No. 09-510, N.D. Ind.).



Forecasting Rough Waters On The Horizon: EPA Overreach And The Clean Water Act
By George Buermann and Oliver Twaddell The public has seen an incredible increase in both frequency and boldness of the United States Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) overreach that severely impacts local communities, industry, businesses, and in some instances, private citizens who are simply trying to enjoy the fruits of their own private land. The overexertion of federal power rears its head in all shapes and sizes-to the casual farmer enjoying his secluded piece of acreage to the EPA officials that are absolved because of their job title. David vs. Goliath



9th Circuit Panel Denies Petitions For En Banc Review Of CERCLA Ruling
SEATTLE - A Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel on Oct. 11 denied petitions from the State of Washington and the Confederated Tribes of the Colville Reservation seeking an en banc review of a July 27 ruling in which the panel held that a Canadian company's emissions from its smelter cannot be considered a disposal of hazardous waste under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (Joseph Pakootas, et al. v. Teck Cominco Metals Ltd., No. 15-35228, 9th Cir.).



Judge: Government's Closure Of Mine Does Not Make It An Operator
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - The federal government's enforcement of War Production Board Limitation Order L-208(Rule L-208) during World War II at the Lava Cap Mine does not make it an operator under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), a federal judge in California ruled Sept. 21 in granting the government's motion for summary judgment on a defendant's counterclaim for contribution (United States of America, et al. v. Sterling Centrecorp Inc., et al., No. 08-cv-02556, E.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 128371).



Judge Overrules Argument That Government's Cost Recovery Claim In Untimely
BOSTON - A federal judge in Massachusetts on Sept. 22 overruled a railroad roundhouse operator's argument that the statute of limitations barred the government's cost recovery claim under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), finding that the tolling period did not begin to run until the U.S. Army issued a record of decision (ROD) in September 2015 stating that removal actions at a portion of the Fort Devens Superfund site in Ayers, Mass., were complete (United States of America v. Boston and Maine Corporation v. Town of Ayer, Mass., No. 13-10087-IT, D. Mass.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 129726).



Judge Affirms Station Owner's Arbitration Award, Finds Remediation Company Liable
WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. - A federal judge in New York on Oct. 4 affirmed an arbitrator's award in favor of gas station owner that found a remediation company liable for breach of contract for failing to inform the owner that petroleum contamination at a neighboring property was caused by another gas station and awarded summary judgment to the owner on the issue (The Plumbing Supply LLC, d/b/a Faucet Works v. ExxonMobil Oil Corp., et al., No. 14-3674, S.D. N.Y.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 138362).



Judge: Property Owner Not Entitled To $9.7M In Damages For Access
KALAMAZOO, Mich. - A defendant property owner can recover only $72,964 in damages for providing access to its land in order for a plaintiff company to remediate trichloroethylene (TCE) contamination, a federal judge in Michigan ruled Sept. 15, finding that the defendant's request for $9.7 million in damages stemmed from the amount of time the plaintiff company has spent on remediation efforts (Newell Brands Inc. v. Kirsch Lofts LLC, No. 15-CV-597, W.D. Mich.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 125987).



Government's Circumstantial Evidence Supports Verdict Over Dumping, Judge Rules
FRANKFORT, Ky. - A septic tank installer's conviction for discharging an estimated 1,000 gallons of raw sewage into Wildcat Creek in violation of the Clean Water Act (CWA) was affirmed by a federal judge in Kentucky on Oct. 6, after he found that the government's circumstantial evidence was still sufficient to support the jury's finding (United States of America v. David Giles, No. 16-cr-0004-GFVT-REW, E.D. Ky.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 139072).



Judge Denies Motion To Reconsider Ruling Denying Request For Fees, Costs
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - A federal judge in California did not apply too narrow of a standard when denying an environmental group's request for $1.2 million in attorney fees and costs in a Clean Water Act (CWA) lawsuit, another federal judge held Sept. 23 in denying the group's motion to reconsider the decision, holding that the group did not provide proper documentation to support the requested amount (California Sportfishing Protection Alliance v. Chico Scrap Metal Inc., et al., No. 10-cv-01207-GEB-AC, E.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 130807).



Man's Suit Over Volkswagen's Emissions Belongs In State Court, Judge Rules
NEWARK, N.J. - A man's lawsuit claiming that Volkswagen Group of America Inc. violated the New Jersey Consumer Fraud Act and other state laws when marketing "clean diesel" vehicles that contained a defeat device to beat emissions tests belongs in state court because the allegations do not raise a federal question, a federal judge in New Jersey ruled Oct. 4 (Christopher Ruzich v. Volkswagen Group of America Inc., et al., No. 16-4753, D. N.J.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 138436).



DOJ: 4 Companies To Pay $3.5M Over Clean Air Act Violations
WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) announced on Oct. 11 that four companies have agreed to pay $3.5 million for criminal violations of the Clean Air Act as a result of releases of hazardous pollutants at two oil- and chemical-processing facilities in Texas.



ExxonMobil Pipeline To Pay $12M Over 2011 Spill Into Yellowstone River
BILLINGS, Mont. - ExxonMobil Pipeline Co. on Sept. 21 agreed to pay $12 million to the federal government and State of Montana to compensate for natural resources damages to the Yellowstone River that occurred following an oil spill in July 2011 (United States of America, et al. v. ExxonMobil Pipeline Company, No. 16-cv-143, D. Mont.).



Companies: C8 Groundwater Contamination Case Should Be Dismissed; Injury Not Shown
ALBANY, N.Y. - Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics Corp. and Honeywell International Inc. on Sept. 26 moved in New York federal court to dismiss a lawsuit brought by a class of residents who contend that the companies are liable for contaminating their drinking water with perfluorooctanoic acid, referred to as C8, contending that the district court lacks subject matter jurisdiction and that the claims should be dismissed under the primary jurisdiction doctrine (Michelle Baker, et al. v. Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics Corp., et al., No. 16-917, N.D. N.Y.).



5th Circuit Says Pollution Endorsement Does Not Exclude All Underlying Claims
NEW ORLEANS - A district court erred in granting summary judgment in favor of an insurer based on its policy's pollution endorsement because it is not clear that the endorsement excludes coverage for all of the underlying claims alleged against an insured, the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals said Sept. 16 (Federal Insurance Co. v. Northfield Insurance Co., No. 14-20633, 5th Cir.; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 17008).



California Federal Judge Allows U.S. Navy To Intervene In Contamination Dispute
SACRAMENTO, Calif. - A California federal judge on Oct. 6 granted a motion to intervene filed by the U.S. Department of the Navy in an environmental contamination coverage dispute after determining that the addition of the Navy as a party to the suit will not prejudice the insurer and will help the court in developing the facts at issue (Lennar Mare Island LLC v. Steadfast Insurance Co., et al., No. 12-2182, E.D. Calif.; 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 139383).



Missouri Panel: Pollution Exclusion Does Not Bar Coverage For Underlying Suits
ST. LOUIS - The Eastern District of the Missouri Court of Appeals on Sept. 27 affirmed that a pollution exclusion cannot be used as a bar to coverage for underlying toxic tort claims because the exclusion, as used in the policy at issue, is ambiguous (The Doe Run Resources Corp. v. American Guarantee & Liability Insurance, et al., No. ED103026, Mo. App., Eastern Div., Div. 3; 2016 Mo. App. LEXIS 964).