The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has finalised new emission standards for cars and gasoline as part of its Tier 3 Vehicle Emission and Fuel Standards Program, following extensive consultation with the public and a broad range of stakeholders. According to the EPA, the new standards "will significantly reduce harmful pollution and prevent thousands of premature deaths and illnesses, while also enabling efficiency improvements in the cars and trucks".
The Council of the European Union (EU) has announced that the Committee of Permanent Representatives has endorsed an agreement between the Hellenic Presidency of the Council and European Parliament representatives on a draft directive for the disclosure of non-financial and diversity information by certain large public interest entities in the EU with over 500 employees. The draft directive would require such companies to disclose, annually, a statement of policies, outcomes and risks relating to environmental, social and employee-related matters including a description of its diversity policy, respect for human rights, anti-corruption and bribery matters. Where the company has not pursued such policies, it must explain why.
The United States (US) Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit has released its Opinion (3 March 2014) in In Re: Deepwater Horizon. According to BP plc (BP), the Court has decided to deny BP's request for a permanent injunction preventing payments to business economic loss (BEL) claimants whose alleged injuries are not traceable to the Deepwater Horizon accident and oil spill. BP argued that such claimants are not proper class members under the terms of the Economic and Property Damages Settlement (the Settlement) reached in 2012; however, Reuters reports that the Court rejected BP's argument that this interpretation of the Settlement would allow businesses to recover for fictitious losses.
The United States (US) Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced that it has issued Utilities Inc a notice of violation in relation to "at least 27 sanitary sewer overflows (SSOs)" that occurred at a South Carolina facility during 2013.
The United States (US) Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced that the following three companies have agreed to pay fines and modify a total four fishing vessels in order to comply with their seafood processing permits issued under the Clean Water Act:
South Korea-based Asiana Airlines Inc (Asiana) president Kim Soo-cheon has stated that the airline is strengthening its operational safety systems as a matter of priority as well as upgrading its training and inspection procedures with the aim of establishing a corporate culture that is focused on safety.
The United States (US) Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Department of Justice (DoJ) have jointly announced that chemicals and materials company WR Grace & Co (Grace), under its Joint Plan of Reorganization (23 December 2010) that follows a 12-year-long bankruptcy, has paid the US government US$63 million to "resolve claims for environmental cleanups at approximately 39 sites in 21 [US] states".
Chemicals and materials company WR Grace & Co (Grace) has announced that its Joint Plan of Reorganization (23 December 2010) (the Plan) (further information) commenced on 3 February 2014, marking the end of its 12-year-long period in bankruptcy and establishing two trust funds totalling more than US$4 billion to "compensate asbestos personal injury claimants and property owners".
The United States (US) Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has announced that it has directed NL Industries to conduct a US$79 million cleanup of a New Jersey beachfront at which soil and sediment have been "contaminated with lead-containing waste that was used to construct a seawall and jetty".
The work health and safety agency of the Australian state of South Australia (SA), SafeWork SA, has announced that the SA Industrial Court (SAIRC) has handed down its judgment in Perry v Taste Master Pty Ltd  SAIRC 4 (22 January 2014), fining flavouring manufacturer Taste Master Pty Ltd (Taste Master) A$41,250 plus legal costs in relation to a 2011 incident in which an employee's hand was severely injured by extruder machine cutter blades when the worker tried to clear a blockage in the machine.
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