December 2011

By Leslie Z. Walker

On December 13, the Office of Administrative Law (“OAL”) approved and transmitted to the Secretary of State the regulations for the California Cap on Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Market-Based Compliance Mechanisms (Cal. Code Regs., tit 17, §§ 95800 et seq.), (“Cap and Trade Regulations”) including Compliance Offset Protocols (“Offset Protocol”). One day later, OAL approved and filed with the Secretary of State revisions to Mandatory Reporting Requirements initially enacted in 2007 (“MRR”). The Cap and Trade Regulations, Compliance Offset Protocol, and MMR are central to implementing California’s Global Warming Solutions Act (AB 32, Health & Saf. Code, § 38500 et seq.) and will take effect on January 1, 2012.

Continue Reading Cap and Trade Regulations Approved and Transmitted; Preliminary List of Covered Entities Now Available

On December 15, 2011, Governor Brown will host an invitation only event on Climate Risks and California’s Future at the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco. According to the Governor’s office, the conference will focus on the risks of unpredictable and extreme weather events caused by climate change and how our communities can prepare for and adapt to those changes. Conference topics include:

  • California and the Global Climate Challenge
  • Climate Change’s Human and Economic Impacts on California
  • A National Perspective on Climate Action
  • Climate Solutions to Protect California Communities and Help our Economy

The full agenda is available at:

Although attendance is limited to invitees, the event will be streaming live on the Governor’s web site:

By Kate J. Hart

The California Building Industry Association (BIA) challenged several provisions of the State Water Board’s newly adopted general NPDES construction permit. While a majority of their claims were denied and most of the permit provisions were upheld, the court struck down the newly imposed numeric effluent limits set for pH and turbidity.


Abbott & Kindermann, LLP is pleased to be nationally recognized by peer law firms as one of the Best Law Firms® for 2012 in land use and land use litigation, as published by US News and World Report. William Abbott is also recognized in the same publication for his work in these fields. Mr. Abbott is also recognized again in 2011 as a Northern California Superlawyer® in the field of zoning and land use law.

By William W. Abbott

The Second Appellate District tackled several technical, but important legal considerations in a newly published decision, including whether the lead agency must analyze the impact of the environment on the project. (Ballona Wetlands Land Trust v. City of Los Angeles (December 2, 2011, B231965) ___ Cal.App.4th ___) This case involves the aftermath to an earlier court decision finding the EIR for the Playa Vista project to be deficient, and directing the City of vacate the approvals and correct certain EIR deficiencies. Consistent with the court’s earlier ruling, the City and developer went back to work on a revised EIR, and as a result of amendments to the CEQA Guidelines, included an analysis of greenhouse gas emissions, and re-approved the project, with mitigation measures. Opponents filed an opposition to the return to the writ, as well as a new petition. The trial court consolidated the two actions, denied the petition, then discharged the writ, following which the opponents appealed. The issues on appeal included sufficiency of analysis and disclosure of archaeological resources and mitigation, sufficiency of analysis of GHG as it related to coastal flooding; and whether the opponents could renew a challenge to the project description.

Continue Reading 2nd Appellate District Again Holds That For The Purposes Of CEQA, It Is The Impact Of The Project On The Environment, Not The Other Way Around

Abbott & Kindermann’s Annual Land Use, Real Estate, and Environmental Law Update

Reserve your seat for one of three seminars taking place in 2012.


In January and February 2012 Abbott & Kindermann, LLP will present its annual complimentary educational program for clients and colleagues interested in current land use, environmental, and real estate issues affecting commercial and residential development, real estate acquisition, easements, leasing and property acquisition, and mining.  In addition, the following hot topics for 2012 will be discussed:


Air Quality and Climate Change: including CEQA Guidelines and Mandatory Reporting

CEQA Litigation: Alternatives Analysis & Exhaustion of Administrative Remedies

Subdivision Map Extension

Interpreting Development Agreements

Endangered Species Act

Water Quality and Wetlands

Water Rights and Supply

Cultural Resources

Renewable Energy

Environmental Enforcement

Hazardous Substance Control and Cleanup


Abbott & Kindermann, LLP will be presenting its annual program at three California locations, Sacramento, Modesto and Redding. Details for the seminars are below. We hope you can join us and look forward to seeing you there.


Modesto Conference


Date: Thursday, January 19, 2012

Location: Double Tree Hotel Modesto, 1150 Ninth Street

Registration: 12:30 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Program: 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.


Redding Conference


Date: Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Location: Hilton Garden Inn Redding, 5050 Bechelli Lane

Registration: 12:30 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.

Program: 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.


Sacramento Conference


Date: Friday, February 10, 2012

Location: Sacramento Hilton Arden West, 2200 Harvard Street

Registration: 8:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m. with continental breakfast

Program: 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon


There is no charge for the programs and MCLE and AICP CM credits are available.


An RSVP will be required as space is limited. To reserve a spot, call our office at (916) 456-9595. When calling, please specify which conference you will be attending.

By Katherine J. Hart

On October 8, 2011, Governor Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill No. 436 (SB 436), authored by Senator Kehoe, into law. SB 436 substantially strengthens the mitigation aspect of the Planning and Zoning Law. It amends Government Code Section 65965 (Definitions), and adds three new Government Code Sections: 65966 and 65967, 65968.

Continue Reading Legislative Update: Mitigation Chapter of Planning and Zoning Law is Amended and Expanded to Ensure the Proper Management of Protected Lands (SB 436)