Regulatory News: Year in Review
With the regulatory stories of 2012 coming to an end,
RegBlog would like to take this opportunity to reflect back on what has been a year of significant regulatory developments in the United States and throughout the world. Over three days this week, we will present the top 50
RegBlog posts of the past twelve months, based on the number of unique page views. Today we feature, in alphabetical order by author, the top news stories from among our top overall posts.
by Elizabeth Hein, RegBlog Staff (February 15)
Potentially stalling the merger of two giants in the long-term pharmaceutical services industry, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) recently issued an antitrust complaint objecting to Omnicare’s impending merger with PharMerica Corporation.
by James Hobbs, RegBlog Staff (July 25)
Occupational Safety and Health Administration(OSHA) and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) recently issued a hazard alert related to drilling workers’ inhalation of silica dust, a byproduct of hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” through sand.
by Vanessa Kurzweil, RegBlog Staff (February 8)
In the face of criticism over the administration’s decision to require employers to provide health coverage for contraception, advisors to President Obama signaled yesterday that the administration continues to “work with” religious organizations that object to the impending requirement.
by Vanessa Kurzweil, RegBlog Staff (February 28)
Current U.S. policy for the management of used nuclear reactor fuel and radioactive waste is “damaging” and “costly,” according to a recent report issued by the Blue Ribbon Commission on America’s Nuclear Future (BRC) to the Department of Energy (DOE).
by Vanessa Kurzweil, RegBlog Staff (July 5)
Two recently introduced bills in the United States Senate are designed to slow the “brain drain” of foreign-born scientists and engineers who return to their native countries after receiving graduate training in the US.
by Vanessa Kurzweil, RegBlog Staff (July 24)
Late last month, a federal appeals court denied or dismissed all challenges to four greenhouse gas regulations issued by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In its opinion, a panel of three judges concluded that the EPA acted within its authority under the Clean Air Act (CAA) in issuing the four regulations.
by Joel Mallord, RegBlog Staff (February 14)
Homeowners may find it more difficult to obtain loans from their local governments for energy saving home improvements under a proposed rule issued by the federal agency responsible for managing government-sponsored lending institutions, such as Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the Federal Home Loan Banks.
by Alisa Melekhina, RegBlog Staff (April 19)
In its decision in Mayo Collaborative Serv. v. Prometheus Labs, the Supreme Court last month clarified U.S. legal principles balancing the importance of encouraging scientific exploration through the patent system with the need to prevent patentees from “improperly [tying] up laws of nature.” The court has previously held that laws of nature, natural phenomena, and abstract ideas are not patentable subject matter under §101 of the Patent Act. However, applications of laws of nature may qualify for patent protection.
by Margaret Miceli, RegBlog Staff (January 31)
by Sean Moloney, RegBlog Staff (May 2)
In a new executive order issued yesterday, President Obama has directed the head of his administration’s regulatory review office to increase “international regulatory cooperation” among U.S. agencies and their foreign counterparts as a way to promote U.S. trade policy.
by Ram Narayan, RegBlog Staff (August 8)
A small bean grown in the Indian subcontinent has become a prized international commodity since the rise of American hydraulic fracturing (fracking). Guar gum plays a crucial role in the fracking process. Its dispersibility in water and mineral oil assists in pushing fracking fluid through solid rock to reach petrochemical deposits in the earth’s crust.
by Sebastian Rowland (February 1)
First Lady Michelle Obama and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced last week new standards for school lunches as part of a national effort to fight childhood obesity. The standards constitute the first major update to school lunch guidelines issued by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) in fifteen years.
by Sebastian Rowland, RegBlog Staff (April 10)
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) last week proposed the first Clean Air Act standard governing carbon emissions for new power plants. The rule would cap the emissions of any new fossil-fuel-based power plants at 1,000 pounds of carbon dioxide per megawatt-hour of energy.
by Sebastian Rowland, RegBlog Staff (May 29)
Earlier this month, the EPA released a draft version of a guidance document that agency officials hope to use to make decisions about issuing permits for fracking operations that use diesel fluid.