Environmental Matters

At Wyche, we strive to keep our clients and friends in the know about all the latest environmental and sustainability news. We hope you'll continue to frequent this blog to find our musings on the ever-changing environmental landscape in South Carolina or subscribe to receive updates as they happen.

Most Recent Post

New Air Quality Standards for Ozone Could Hamper Upstate SC Economic Development

March 26th, 2015

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Upstate Employers Network recent featured Wyche Environmental Attorney Rita Barker as a guest blogger. The featured article can be found below.

Under the Clean Air Act, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) establishes and reviews National Ambient Air Quality Standards, known as NAAQS. NAAQS are nationwide air quality goals designed to protect public health and the environment. For various air pollutants, including carbon monoxide, lead, nitrogen dioxide, particulate matter, ozone and sulfur dioxide, EPA ...

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Public Comment Period to Close March 30 on Plan for Offshore Oil Development

March 23rd, 2015

In late January 2015 the Department of the Interior took a tentative step toward allowing oil drilling off the coast of South Carolina and several other Southeastern states. The Department’s ...

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After DHEC Director Nominee’s Withdrawal, Agency Conducts Search for New Director

March 18th, 2015

Welcome back! We were on blogging hiatus while our new website was constructed. We hope you enjoy connecting with us on the redesigned website and blog. Now, back to environmental ...

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Expanding Map Options: Google Trekker

January 28th, 2015

Many in the real estate and environmental industry rely on evolving mapping technologies for their projects.  Google Maps continues to expand and has launched a new Trekker program.  Images from ...

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A Founder. A Friend. A Legacy.

January 26th, 2015

Tommy Wyche's visionary leadership shaped Wyche into a unique law firm where like-minded attorneys could build a meaningful practice in a community that they love. Tommy brought that same innovative ...

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DHEC Board Names Eleanor Kitzman as New Director

January 13th, 2015

Following Catherine Templeton’s resignation as Director of the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC), the DHEC Board has named Eleanor Kitzman to the post.  Kitzman formerly served ...

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DHEC Director Catherine Templeton Resigns

January 9th, 2015

Catherine Templeton, the director of the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC), announced her resignation from the agency, effective January 12, 2015.  Templeton stated:  “When Governor Haley ...

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SC Supreme Court Rules Against Proposed Kiawah Island Bulkhead

December 12th, 2014

On December 10, 2014, the South Carolina Supreme Court ruled in a 3-2 decision that a developer could not construct a proposed bulkhead and revetment at Captain Sam’s Spit on ...

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EPA Announces First Existing Multifamily Housing to Earn Energy Star Certification

November 26th, 2014

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has recently announced that 17 existing multifamily housing properties have earned its new certification for energy-efficient multifamily housing under the Energy Star program, which ...

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New Leadership at Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management

November 17th, 2014

DHEC Director Catherine Templeton has announced the hiring of Sara Pendarvis Bazemore to head the agency’s Office of Ocean and Coastal Resource Management (OCRM).  A native of Charleston and 2005 ...

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EPA Releases Action Plan for RE-Powering America’s Land Initiative

November 13th, 2014

Beginning in 2008, EPA’s RE-Powering America’s Lands Initiative has worked to promote renewable energy development on current and formerly contaminated lands, landfills and mine sites. The Initiative’s Action Plan 2.0 ...

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Modifications Proposed to Standards for Wastewater Facility Construction

November 11th, 2014

In late September DHEC proposed changes to Regulation 61-67, which sets the standards for wastewater facility construction. Among the proposed amendments is a 25% reduction in the unit loading flows ...

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EPA Announces Historic Greenhouse Gas Enforcement Case

November 6th, 2014

On November 3, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the US Department of Justice announced a significant settlement with Hyundai and Kia, automakers facing allegations of inaccurate testing and ...

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Real Estate Industry Focuses on “Resilience” in Response to Climate Change

October 30th, 2014

Increasingly, the real estate industry is focusing on “resilience" to plan for natural disaster and climate change issues.  While planning for such events is good for the environment, the real ...

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EPA Changes All Appropriate Inquiries Standard: 2005 ASTM Standard No Longer Sufficient

October 9th, 2014

On October 6, 2014, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) finalized an amendment to its All Appropriate Inquiries (AAI) rule, stating that ASTM E-1527-05, the due diligence standard issued in 2005, ...

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EPA Releases Latest Greenhouse Gas Emissions Data

October 3rd, 2014

Earlier this week, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its annual Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program data for 2013 emissions.  From approximately 8,000 sources that represent 50% of the nation’s ...

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EPA Extends Comment Period for its Clean Power Plan Proposal

September 19th, 2014

Earlier this week, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that it will extend the comment period for its most recent regulatory effort to cut carbon pollution from existing power ...

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S.C. Water Resources Conference Coming in October

September 10th, 2014

Registration has opened for the 2014 South Carolina Water Resources Conference, which will be held in Columbia on October 15-16.  A biennial event, the Conference is coordinated by Clemson University’s ...

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SC Criminal Prosecutions Continue for Environmental Violations

September 3rd, 2014

The United States Attorney’s Office for the District of South Carolina continues to pursue criminal prosecutions for violations of environmental protection laws.On August 21 an Anderson County man, Scott Farmer, ...

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EPA Warns of Paint-Stripping Products

September 2nd, 2014

On August 28, 2014, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) released a final risk assessment for Dichloromethane (DCM), which is widely used in common household paint-stripping products.  The risk ...

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A New Building Standard Set to Launch in Late 2014

August 21st, 2014

Commercial, residential and institutional buildings can seek certification under the WELL Building Standard, a standard currently in a pilot phase with performance requirements in seven categories:  air, water, nourishment, light, ...

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South Carolina Legislative Roundup: 2014

August 11th, 2014

The South Carolina Generally Assembly ended its 2014 term in early June, having considered a number of proposed bills with environmental implications.  In a March 27th blog post, we summarized ...

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SCDHEC Seeks Input on New General Mining Permit

July 31st, 2014

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (“SCDHEC”) is holding a public hearing and seeking comments on a proposed new Mining General Permit - GP1.  This General Permit ...

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In Light of Widespread PCB Contamination, ReWa Establishes a General Permit Program for Food Service Establishments

July 17th, 2014

In light of the discovery of PCBs in waste streams throughout SC, including at ReWa, ReWa has announced a permitting program for Food Service Establishments.  Most of the approximately 1,350 ...

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US Department of Energy Assists Alternative Fuel Vehicle Drivers with Its Fueling Station Locator

June 25th, 2014

If you own an alternative fuel vehicle or are considering purchasing one, the US Department of Energy’s Alternative Fueling Station Locator can make your life easier.  Users type in their locations, ...

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Supreme Court Sends Mixed Message to EPA on the Agency’s Authority to Regulate Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Stationary Sources

June 24th, 2014

On June 23, 2014, the US Supreme Court issued an important environmental decision, Utility Air Regulatory Group v. EPA, No. 12-1146 (L), which restricts the authority of the Environmental Protection ...

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2014 South Carolina Clean Energy Summit Approaching

June 23rd, 2014

The Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center will play host to the 2014 South Carolina Clean Energy Summit on July 9, 2014.  The Summit will feature “high level moderated sessions” on clean ...

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Supreme Court Agrees that CERCLA Does Not Preempt State Statute of Repose

June 16th, 2014

On June 9 the U.S. Supreme Court issued an opinion in CTS Corp. v. Waldburger, a case we first blogged about last July (and noted in January that the Supreme Court ...

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EPA Proposes Carbon Limits for Existing Power Plants

June 11th, 2014

Last week, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its Clean Power Plan proposal, aimed at cutting carbon pollution from existing power plants.  According to EPA, power plants contribute a ...

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SC Bill to Expedite Environmental Permit Appeals Fails to Progress

June 9th, 2014

Despite support by the South Carolina Chamber of Commerce, a bill to expedite environmental permit appeals, H 3827, failed to pass the South Carolina General Assembly this session.  Bill H ...

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EPA’s EnviroAtlas Tool Provides Interactive Ecosystem Mapping

June 3rd, 2014

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently launched EnviroAtlas, a web-based interactive tool that allows the public to explore the nation’s ecosystems and the impacts that humans have on them. ...

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EPA Awards $1.5 Million in Brownfields Grants to South Carolina Communities

June 2nd, 2014

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced on May 28 that it was awarding $1.5 million in brownfields grants to assist South Carolina communities with the cleanup and redevelopment of brownfield ...

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EPA Issues Reminder about Regulations Addressing Releases in Emergency Shutdowns

May 29th, 2014

With hurricane season rapidly approaching, EPA has taken the opportunity to remind owners and operators of industrial facilities of laws and regulations that address chemical releases during shutdowns.  “Unlike some ...

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South Carolina Contractor Convicted for Clean Air Act Violations Arising from Improper Asbestos Removal

May 28th, 2014

Last week, the United States Attorney for South Carolina announced that a contractor who ran CoolCote, a Myrtle Beach-based construction and renovation company, was sentenced to six months in prison, ...

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EPA Releases 2014 Energy Star Top Cities

April 18th, 2014

Atlanta (#3) and Charlotte (#11) rank in the EPA’s just released list of the 2014 Energy Star Top Cities.  According to the EPA, energy use in commercial buildings accounts for ...

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Upcoming “Lean and Green Manufacturing Workshop”

April 16th, 2014

EPA Region 4 and the South Carolina Manufacturing Extension Partnership (SCMEP) are teaming up in May and June to offer a two-day “Lean and Green Manufacturing Workshop.”  The workshop will ...

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Amendments to Energy Independence and Sustainable Construction Act

April 15th, 2014

Amendments to the Energy Independence and Sustainable Construction Act allow major state-funded facility projects in South Carolina to seek a waiver of requirements to meet certain LEED standards should the Office ...

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Healthy Food Access: An Economic Development Issue

April 14th, 2014

Federal and state agencies as well as private organizations such as the Urban Land Institute are focusing on how addressing “food deserts” by bringing a full-service grocery store into neighborhoods ...

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SCDHEC Issues Daily Ozone Forecasts

April 11th, 2014

Beginning this month, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (“DHEC”) is issuing daily forecasts for ground-level ozone.  DHEC hopes the information will lead residents to “adjust their ...

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State Legislative Update

March 27th, 2014

The South Carolina General Assembly is in the middle of its 2014 term, which is scheduled to end on June 5.  Legislators are considering a number of bills that have ...

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Proposed EPA Rule Could Expand Protection of SC Wetlands

March 27th, 2014

EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers announced a proposed rule on March 25, 2014, addressing the scope of the Clean Water Act, specifically the Act’s key definition of the ...

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Green Infrastructure: Benefits to Private Property Owners

March 11th, 2014

A recent report by the Natural Resources Defense Council entitled The Green Edge: How Commercial Property Investment in Green Infrastructure Creates Value highlights that an investment in green infrastructure has ...

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EPA Proposes Changes to Agricultural Worker Protection Standard

February 28th, 2014

Last revised in 1992, EPA’s Agricultural Worker Protection Standard (WPS) is intended to protect the nation’s 2 million agricultural workers from risks that accompany the use of pesticides. EPA has ...

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EPA Annual Report Shows Downward Trend in Enforcement Actions

February 27th, 2014

Earlier this month the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its annual report on enforcement and compliance actions.  The report chronicles fiscal year 2013 and highlights the $5.6 billion in fines, ...

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EPA Issues Final Rule Authorizing the Use of Electronic Manifests for Hazardous Wastes

February 13th, 2014

Earlier this month, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a final rule authorizing the use of electronic manifests to track the off-site shipment of hazardous wastes under the Resource ...

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Sustainability Issues Included in Critical Imperatives Facing U.S. Cities

February 3rd, 2014

A recent report from the National League of Cities entitled The 10 Critical Imperatives Facing America’s Cities in 2014 included a deteriorating transportation infrastructure and extreme weather as top concerns.  ...

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EPA Proposes Carbon Standards for New Coal and Natural Gas Power Plants

January 30th, 2014

The Environmental Protection Agency has released for public comment a proposed set of standards designed to reduce carbon emissions at new coal and natural gas-fired power plants.  The origin of ...

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SC DHEC Pursuing RFP for Statewide Water Assessment

January 27th, 2014

On January 17, 2014, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC) and the South Carolina Department of Natural Resources (SCDNR) announced they were pursuing a Request for ...

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New Regional Administrator Announced for EPA Region 4

January 21st, 2014

Author: Suedi WalkerThe Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced on January 14, 2014 that President Obama has appointed a new Regional Administrator for EPA Region 4. Heather McTeer Toney will assume ...

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UPDATE: Supreme Court to Review Fourth Circuit CERCLA Decision

January 17th, 2014

The U.S. Supreme Court has announced it will review a Fourth Circuit decision holding that a provision of CERCLA preempts a North Carolina statute of repose. As we first reported ...

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UPDATE: EPA Amends All-Appropriate Inquiries Rule

January 14th, 2014

On December 30, 2013, the EPA announced a final decision to amend the “All Appropriate Inquiries Rule” to make clear that persons conducting a Phase I Environmental Site Assessment according ...

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EPA Releases Strategic Plan for 2014-2018

December 23rd, 2013

The Environmental Protection Agency has released for public comment a draft strategic plan for the agency’s next four years.  The Draft FY 2014-2018 EPA Strategic Plan (the “Plan”) is used ...

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EPA Adds Nine Hazardous Waste Sites to the National Priorities List

December 12th, 2013

On December 11, 2013, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced the addition of nine hazardous waste sites to Superfund’s National Priorities List (NPL).  According to EPA, these sites, including two ...

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SCDHEC Seeks Comments on Amendments to Solid Waste Regulation

December 4th, 2013

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) is proposing to amend regulation R.61-107.4, Solid Waste Management: Yard Trash and Land-clearing Debris; and Compost. The proposed regulation would ...

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Restructuring May Be in Store for DHEC

November 20th, 2013

DHEC Director Catherine Templeton recently told the agency’s Board that she will begin soliciting comments in early 2014 on the reorganization and possible division of DHEC into two separate agencies, ...

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Update – DHEC’s “Permit Central”

November 19th, 2013

As we first reported in March, DHEC has launched a website entitled “Permit Central” to help guide businesses in South Carolina through the sometimes daunting process of obtaining the necessary permits.  ...

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EPA Releases Greenhouse Gas Emissions Data for Large Facilities

November 4th, 2013

EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Reporting Program collects greenhouse gas information from over 8,000 facilities in the largest emitting industries, including power plants, iron and steel mills, landfills, and oil and gas ...

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SCDHEC Drafting General Air Permit for Mine Operations

October 25th, 2013

SCDHEC is working on a draft general air permit for certain mines in South Carolina, at least including crushed stone quarry operations.  Although the mining industry had expressed interest in ...

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Is Sustainability Good for Business?

October 25th, 2013

The Riley Institute at Furman University and Upstate Forever are co-hosting a seminar on Green Economics entitled Why Sustainability is Good for Business and the Economy Tuesday, October 29, 2013 ...

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EPA Wrestling with New All Appropriate Inquiries Rule

October 15th, 2013

As we first reported late last year, the American Society for Testing and Materials (“ASTM”) is revising the standard governing Phase I Environmental Site Assessments, ASTM E1527.  In connection with ...

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Emergency Regulation Regarding Management of Wastewater System Sludge

October 8th, 2013

On September 25, 2013, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) issued an emergency regulation regarding management of wastewater system sludge, including land application of sludge impacted ...

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Applications Being Accepted for SC Environmental Leadership Forum

October 4th, 2013

DHEC is accepting applications between now and October 14, 2013, for a series of workshops designed to educate and develop South Carolina leaders on environmental issues.  Participants in the SC ...

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EPA Proposes Pollution Regulations for New Power Plants

September 23rd, 2013

On Friday, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed new Clean Air Act regulations to reduce carbon pollution from new power plants.  EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy stated that these regulations ...

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Some States Privatize Remediation Process

September 20th, 2013

Some states, such as New Jersey and Connecticut, realizing the costs in managing the oversight of remediation efforts have privatized the site remediation process, are transferring responsibility for issuing approvals ...

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Urban Land Institute Study Highlights Improved Environmental Performance in Global Real Estate Industry

September 13th, 2013

An alliance of the world’s leading real estate owners, investors and financial institutions committed to improving environmental performance across the global real estate industry reported progress in a recently released ...

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SCDHEC on Lookout for Illegal Dumping

August 29th, 2013

In the wake of recent discoveries of polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) at three Upstate publicly-owned treatment works, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (“SCDHEC”) is working with the ...

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New EPA Application Helps Calculate and Combat Stormwater Runoff

August 20th, 2013

The Environmental Protection Agency has recently introduced a desktop computer application that estimates the amount of rain and the frequency of stormwater runoff at specific sites anywhere in the United ...

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Ruling May Lead to New Regulation of Biomass Plants

August 14th, 2013

A ruling last month from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit has overturned an EPA decision that temporarily exempted biomass power plants from new greenhouse ...

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Facilities Using Solvent Wipes Get Relief from Waste Regulations

August 12th, 2013

On July 31, 2013, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) modified its hazardous waste management regulations under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) to conditionally exclude solvent-contaminated wipes from ...

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Celebrating the Success of the City of Greenville’s “Connections for Sustainability”

August 10th, 2013

The City of Greenville’s Connections for Sustainability provides a model of success for federal inter-agency funding of community sustainability initiatives.  In 2010, the City of Greenville received funding from the ...

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An Improved Tool to Measure the Energy Efficiency of Buildings

August 8th, 2013

Currently, 40% of U.S. commercial space uses Energy Star Portfolio Manager, an online energy management and tracking tool, to measure a building’s energy performance.  In July, the EPA announced added ...

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SC DHEC Proposes to Repeal and Streamline 25 Environmental Regulations

July 30th, 2013

Businesses subject to environmental regulations in South Carolina should familiarize themselves with recent changes proposed by the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (“SC DHEC”).In response to an ...

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Tommy Wyche is the 2013 Green Day Honoree

July 26th, 2013

Tommy Wyche will be recognized as the 2013 Green Day Honoree at the Greenville Drive game on August 6th at Fluor Field.  Tommy is being honored for his dedication to ...

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Guest Blogger: Jenni Asman from Palmetto Green Schools Initiative

July 22nd, 2013

Although some South Carolina school buildings have received negative attention for their poor conditions, as featured in Bud Ferrillo’s 2006 documentary, “Corridor of Shame,” the Palmetto Green Schools Initiative is making ...

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Fourth Circuit Rules CERCLA Preempts State Statute of Repose

July 19th, 2013

The Fourth Circuit has recently issued a major decision that implicates the rights and liabilities of landowners and former landowners of property damaged by pollution.  In a split decision, the ...

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City of Greenville Passes Low-Impact Development Parking Program

July 11th, 2013

Last month, the City of Greenville, in partnership with Upstate Forever and Furman University, approved a market-based program to incentivize developers to build appropriately-sized parking  lots while reducing adverse impacts ...

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Military Mandates Sustainable Development

July 10th, 2013

It is the Department of Defense’s policy to build, operate, maintain, reuse, demolish or deconstruct Department of Defense buildings in a sustainable manner.  The Unified Facilities Criteria (UFC) provides a ...

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New Study Raises Questions about Water Quality at SC Beaches

July 9th, 2013

A recent report by the Natural Resources Defense Council raises questions about water quality at many of South Carolina’s most popular beaches, especially those along the Grand Strand.  Testing the ...

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Governor Haley Signs Needed Infrastructure Funding Legislation

July 8th, 2013

Increasing funding for infrastructure has been a priority for many South Carolinians, including members of the Urban Land Institute and the S.C. Chamber of Commerce.  The Urban Land Institute’s Infrastructure ...

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Abandoned Buildings Revitalization Act Becomes Law

June 28th, 2013

On June 11, 2013 Governor Haley signed into law a state tax credit for the rehabilitation, renovation and redevelopment of abandoned buildings for commercial use.  The Abandoned Buildings Revitalization Act ...

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President Obama Releases Expansive Climate Action Plan

June 25th, 2013

Today President Obama unveiled his new executive action plan to promote renewable energy and cut greenhouse gas emissions.  The full 21-page plan is available here and sets as its primary ...

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High Court Gives Government Agencies More Deference

June 14th, 2013

The U.S. Supreme Court recently clarified that a governmental agency which has been given the authority to promulgate regulations and adjudicate disputes may use such authority to interpret its governing ...

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Register for the 2013 SC Clean Energy Summit

June 12th, 2013

The South Carolina Clean Energy Business Alliance is hosting the 2013 South Carolina Clean Energy Summit July 11th at the Columbia Metropolitan Convention Center.  The Summit will include sessions on ...

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Greenville County Addresses Stormwater Issues with Market Incentives

June 4th, 2013

On March 5, the Greenville County Council adopted a new Stormwater Banking Program and incorporated it into the county’s zoning ordinances. The program, which was developed over a four-year period ...

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Environmental Non-Compliance Can Be Costly

June 3rd, 2013

Major retailer Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. has been hit with more than $81 million in civil and criminal penalties for violations of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and the ...

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EPA Announces Two New Hazardous Waste Sites

May 31st, 2013

On May 21st, the Environmental Protection Agency announced the addition of two new Southeastern locations to the Superfund National Priorities List (NPL).  Superfund is a federal program used to investigate ...

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Tune in to SC ETV Radio at Noon

May 30th, 2013

Brad Wyche, director of Upstate Forever, will be interviewed on this Friday’s edition of Walter Edgar’s Journal on South Carolina ETV Radio. Topics discussed will include land conservation, natural resources, ...

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Solar Energy Bill Stalls in SC Senate

May 24th, 2013

A bill intended to reduce regulatory hurdles for solar energy companies that invest in South Carolina has failed to gain traction in the South Carolina Senate. We first blogged about ...

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Brownfield Buyer Beware

May 21st, 2013

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals recently held that a purchaser of a brownfield could be held liable for the costs of remediating hazardous substances on it, notwithstanding its bona ...

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State Ban on Seawalls Under Scrutiny

May 8th, 2013

South Carolina’s twenty-five year ban on seawalls is under scrutiny as a result of a new bill introduced in the General Assembly. Since 1988 construction of new seawalls has been ...

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EPA Invests in Brownfields Redevelopment

April 30th, 2013

Last week, the EPA announced it will award approximately $4 million in grants to 20 communities to assist with planning for remediation and reuse of brownfields properties.  The winning projects ...

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Proposed Legislation to Eliminate LEED Requirement for State Buildings

April 22nd, 2013

Upstate Representatives (Rep. Sandifer and Rep. Loftis) have co-sponsored a proposed bill, H.3592, to delete the use of the LEED green building rating system from the SC Energy Independence and ...

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SustainSC Conference April 24-26, 2013 in Myrtle Beach, SC

April 22nd, 2013

The South Carolina Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council’s 2013 statewide conference, SustainSC, will take place in Myrtle Beach on April 24-26th.  SustainSC will focus on educating, training and ...

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New Life for Solar Energy Bill

March 25th, 2013

A solar energy bill that stalled in the South Carolina House of Representatives has now been introduced in the SC Senate.  The bill is cosponsored by a bipartisan group of ...

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SCDHEC Launches "Permit Central"

March 25th, 2013

The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control recently announced the launch of a new web page, styled "Permit Central."  SCDHEC's goal is to better inform companies doing business ...

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EPA Announces Cities with the Most Energy Star Buildings

March 21st, 2013

Charlotte (#14) and Atlanta (#5) are among the top cities in the U.S. with the most Energy Star certified buildings.  The EPA recently released its list of metropolitan areas with ...

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EPA Finalizes New Rules for Stationary Engines

March 8th, 2013

In late January EPA finalized revisions to emission standards for Reciprocating Internal Combustion Engines (RICE).  RICE are commonly used at manufacturing and other industrial sites to generate electricity and power ...

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DHEC Seeks Comments on Environmental Regulations

March 5th, 2013

Governor Haley has established a Regulatory Review Task Force to evaluate regulatory burdens on South Carolina businesses and explore ways to relieve those burdens.  To support this initiative, DHEC has ...

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New EPA Guidance Offers Tenants Liability Protection for Contamination

March 4th, 2013

Tenants can be held liable for preexisting contamination on property they lease under certain circumstances.  Tenants can, however, utilize the bona fide prospective purchaser (BFPP) defense against such liability under ...

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Solar Energy Bill Introduced in House Faces Uncertain Future

February 22nd, 2013

A solar energy bill introduced in the South Carolina House faces an uncertain future.  The House Labor, Commerce, and Industry subcommittee heard testimony for and against the bill on Tuesday, ...

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American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 Impacts Sustainability

February 15th, 2013

On January 2, 2013, President Obama signed into law the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (“ATRA”), which includes many energy incentives and provisions impacting sustainability.  For example, ATRA extends ...

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EPA Releases Greenhouse Gas Emissions Data

February 8th, 2013

EPA’s Greenhouse Gas Reporting Rule (74 FR 56260) requires large sources and suppliers to report greenhouse gas emissions.  Earlier this month, EPA published emissions data for reporting year 2011, when ...

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Trends Indicate Increases in Infill, Residential Development

February 6th, 2013

A 2012 study on Residential Construction Trends in America’s Metropolitan Regions indicates that infill housing is increasing and, such increases may indicate a shift in the geography of residential construction.  ...

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Solar Energy Bill Introduced in General Assembly

February 6th, 2013

A new solar energy bill introduced in the South Carolina General Assembly aims to help solar power and other forms of renewable energy grow in South Carolina.  Under current state ...

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Will 2013 Bring An End To the Energy-Efficient Tax Deductions of Section 179D?

January 23rd, 2013

Section 179D of the Internal Revenue Code encourages energy efficiency by offering a tax deduction of up to $1.80 per square foot for certain energy-efficient improvements in commercial buildings.  Section ...

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EPA to Highlight Key Environmental Issues in the Southeastern Region

January 11th, 2013

On February 26, 2013 at the Georgia State Bar Conference Center in Atlanta, GA, the EPA will offer updates on key state and regional developments in environmental law in the ...

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Leadership and Staffing Changes Announced at Federal and State Regulatory Agencies

January 9th, 2013

With the arrival of the new year, both the Environmental Protection Agency and South Carolina’s Department of Health and Environmental Control will be seeing significant changes in leadership and staffing.In ...

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EPA Announces a More Stringent Standard for Soot Particles

January 4th, 2013

On December 14, the US Environmental Protection Agency revised the National Ambient Air Quality Standards for Particle Pollution, announcing a more stringent standard for harmful fine particle pollution, known as ...

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Handy EPA Resources for the Commercial Real Estate Industry

December 18th, 2012

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) provides some incredibly useful resources on its website, www.epa.gov. See below for a sample of these resources, which may be especially helpful for those in ...

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Changes On the Way for Phase I Environmental Site Assessments

December 12th, 2012

Changes may be in store in 2013 to the Phase I Environmental Site Assessment (ESA), which has become the first step of environmental due diligence in the real estate world.  ...

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BikeShare is Coming to Greenville!

December 6th, 2012

Greenville B-Cycle has announced that it will launch a BikeShare program here in Greenville in the Spring of 2013.  The program will provide community members and visitors an active way ...

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The FTC Has Released New Green Guides

December 5th, 2012

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently released its Final Guides for the Use of Environmental Marketing Claims.  Known as the Green Guides, they update and supplement the agency’s prior guidance ...

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Wyche Named Official Climate Challenge Partner by American Bar Association and U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

November 20th, 2012

The American Bar Association (ABA) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently named Wyche an official “Climate Challenge Partner.” This distinction is given to law firms that have taken ...

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SC Supreme Court Rules on “Spot Zoning”

November 16th, 2012

Could a court determine how to balance historic preservation goals with increased development? Recently the S.C. Supreme Court upheld an ordinance to increase the height restrictions for a lot planned ...

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SC Isolated Wetlands and Carolina Bays Task Force Indicates Preference for Protection Through Conservation Easements

November 16th, 2012

The SC Isolated Wetlands and Carolina Bays Task Force, created by the South Carolina General Assembly in June of this year to review and study isolated wetlands and make findings ...

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EPA Takes Enforcement Action Against 16 Businesses for Alleged Violations of the Lead-Based Paint Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule

November 15th, 2012

On November 14, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced 16 enforcement actions for alleged violations of its Renovation, Repair and Painting Rule, which governs construction activities that disturb ...

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Could Mandatory Disclosure of a Building’s Energy Efficiency Become Law?

November 6th, 2012

Can you imagine how the availability of information on buildings’ energy performance could change the commercial real estate market?  In some U.S. cities, privately-owned buildings are increasingly required to meet ...

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SC Isolated Wetlands and Carolina Bays Task Force's Next Meeting

October 31st, 2012

The SC Isolated Wetlands and Carolina Bays Task Force was created by the South Carolina General Assembly in June of this year to review and study isolated wetlands and make ...

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EPA Launches App for Checking the Health of Waterways

October 25th, 2012

In celebration of the fortieth anniversary of the Clean Water Act, EPA has launched a new app and website that provide user-friendly information on the health of thousands of streams, ...

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Recent Changes in FHA’s Financing Rules Encourage Condo Financing in Mixed-Use Developments

October 24th, 2012

On September 13, 2012, the Federal Housing Administration issued revised guidelines, which took effect immediately and will apply until August 31, 2014.  The revisions make it easier for condominium associations ...

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City of Columbia Close to Agreement with EPA over Sewer System

October 15th, 2012

The State newspaper is reporting that the Environmental Protection Agency and the City of Columbia are close to finalizing a consent agreement that will impose a fine on Columbia of ...

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EPA Names Twelve New Sites to the National Priorities List

October 9th, 2012

Last month, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) named twelve new hazardous waste sites to the National Priorities List (NPL) for cleanup under the Superfund program.  The list includes sites across ...

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SCDHEC Faces Permit Backlog

September 24th, 2012

 According to the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC), 503 of the state’s 3,693 active pollution control permits have expired.  Most of the expired permits are for ...

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Congratulations to Greenville for Winning the EPA’s Clean Air Excellence Award

September 20th, 2012

The City and County of Greenville were recognized by the EPA as a winner of this year’s Clean Air Excellence Award for their innovative Electric Vehicle (EV) Ecosystem Pilot Project. ...

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Upcoming Seminar on Managing Environmental Risks in Business Transactions

September 14th, 2012

Wyche is hosting a roundtable on Thursday, September 27 on the key environmental risks facing businesses today. We’ll have a panel of experts who will weigh in on the environmental ...

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DHEC Announces Plan for New Group of Staff to Assist in Permitting Process

August 30th, 2012

The S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control intends to dedicate a new group of five staff members to help guide businesses through the permitting process. DHEC Director Catherine Templeton ...

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Sustainability Summit on September 7

August 21st, 2012

The Upstate South Carolina chapter of Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW), is joining forces with Clemson University’s Richard H. Pennell Center for Real Estate Development to present a “Sustainability Summit: ...

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SC Isolated Wetlands Taskforce Meeting in September

August 20th, 2012

In June, the South Carolina General Assembly amended the Pollution Control Act (“PCA”) to address the Smith Land case.  In that case, the South Carolina Supreme Court interpreted the PCA ...

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The Basics of Carbon Trading

August 9th, 2012

“Carbon Trading” refers to a group of market-based approaches currently being used in various countries to regulate and reduce the emission of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases.  A market ...

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Senate Committee Approves the Safe Chemicals Act

August 6th, 2012

On July 25, 2012, the US Senate Committee on Environment & Public Works approved S. 847, the Safe Chemicals Act of 2011, which, if passed, would revamp the Toxic Substances ...

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Court of Appeals Upholds EPA Greenhouse Gas Regulations

July 27th, 2012

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit has issued an important opinion regarding the regulation of greenhouse gas emissions in the United States. The opinion is the product ...

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DHEC’s Environmental Assistance Conference

July 16th, 2012

DHEC is hosting its annual Environmental Assistance Conference, aimed at advising businesses on compliance issues, on November 7, 2012 at the Columbia Convention Center.  The agenda will include topics such ...

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Conservation Easements in South Carolina – A Valuable Tool for Many Landowners and Developers

July 13th, 2012

Conservation easements can be used for a variety of useful purposes including impacting the sustainability of communities, improving the marketability of properties, preserving natural assets and, even, tax credit purposes ...

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Environmental Groups Take Aim at Coal Ash Ponds

June 28th, 2012

Environmental organizations have filed actions against two South Carolina power companies that operate coal-fired power plants.  The actions seek the cleanup of waste ponds where coal ash is stored.In January ...

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DHEC Finalizes its Surface Water Withdrawal Regulation

June 27th, 2012

DHEC Regulation 61-119, governing surface water withdrawal, permitting, use and reporting, became effective June 22, 2012.  Some highlights from the Regulation:The Regulation requires existing surface water withdrawers to submit a ...

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Protecting the Blue Ridge Escarpment

June 21st, 2012

Back in the early 1970s, our colleague, Tommy Wyche, known as “the godfather of conservation” in South Carolina, began his efforts to protect the Blue Ridge Escarpment, a mountain bridge ...

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Governor Haley Signs Amended SC Pollution Control Act

June 7th, 2012

After much negotiation, on Wednesday, June 6, 2012, Governor Haley signed into law the amended South Carolina Pollution Control Act (R255, H4654).  As expected, the compromise between business and environmental ...

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Latest LEED Rating System Delayed Until 2013

June 5th, 2012

The US Green Building Council’s LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) rating system was developed by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) in 2000.  There are currently 122 LEED ...

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The Green Lease Library

June 2nd, 2012

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, green leases "align the financial and energy incentives of building owners and tenants so they can work together to save money, conserve resources, ...

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The South Carolina SUPERB Fund: A Tool for Remediating Petroleum Releases

June 1st, 2012

Since 1988, South Carolina’s SUPERB program—State Underground Petroleum Environmental Response Bank—has provided funding to owners and operators of qualified underground storage tanks (USTs) for remediation efforts following a petroleum release.  ...

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Pollution Control Act Compromise

May 30th, 2012

After months of debate, this week business and environmental groups reached a compromise regarding amendments to South Carolina’s Pollution Control Act.  In the wake of the uncertainty created by the ...

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South Carolina Conservation Bank Extended

May 15th, 2012

On May 14, 2012, South Carolina governor Nikki Haley signed into law a five-year extension of the South Carolina Conservation Bank. The Bank’s authorization had been set to expire in ...

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Abandoned Buildings Revitalization Act

May 8th, 2012

Commercial developers may soon receive a 25% state income tax credit for renovating an abandoned building in which the rehabilitation expenses are more than $250,000. This legislation, H.4802, aims to ...

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SC Supreme Court to Hear Savannah Port Dredging Dispute

April 11th, 2012

The SC Supreme Court will exercise original jurisdiction over an issue involving agency authority in the Savannah Harbor Expansion Project (SHEP).  Several environmental groups have asked the Court to determine ...

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The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission Approves S.C. Reactors

April 4th, 2012

On Friday, Scana Corp. received approval from the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission by a 4-1 vote for the construction and operation of two units at a plant 26 miles northwest ...

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