Exposure to toxic chemicals can by facilitated by contaminated air, water or substances. In Georgia and all other states, there are federal and state laws that prohibit a company from allowing the massive leakage of contaminated air into the properties of thousands of nearby residential homes. Even at common law, there are nuisance and related tort actions that victims can assert to obtain compensation for illness related to exposure to contaminated air.
In Georgia and nationwide, when a developer or other person intends to build on land that is environmentally sensitive, permits must usually be obtained from local, state and federal authorities. For all construction in the waters or wetlands, the developer must obtain a permit from the Army Corps of Engineers in addition to any other required approvals. Land development in environmentally sensitive areas is therefore subject to enhanced environmental protection measures.
Business development can be a real challenge when it comes to dealing with land use issues and zoning regulations. Depending on the applicable zoning laws citywide development plans, the type of development proposed, and the way in which a proposal is received by neighboring property owners, developers can sometimes face real difficult in moving a project forward, at least in the way they would like to.
We have previously written on this blog about the Superfund cleanup process, which is overseen by the Environmental Protection Agency. In previous discussions of the process, we have spoken about the common scenario of industrial plants causing environmental pollution as a result of routine operations, but this is not the only way a site can become contaminated.
In our last post, we began speaking about legal challenges the EPA is currently facing in connection with a recently established rule under the Clean Air Act. The rule, as we noted, requires states to cut out civil penalty shields from their pollution reduction plans. The Georgia groups who are opposing the policy raised a handful of legal issues for consideration. Some of these issues are similar to those raised by other appellants.