New York Environmental Legislation in 2017

[caption id="attachment_8529" align="alignleft" width="616"] Michael B. Gerrard and Edward McTiernan[/caption]   In 2017, New York State enacted multiple laws that tackle aspects of two major environmental issues facing the state: protecting water quality and advancing the states clean energy goals. In addition, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed laws concerning oil tankers on the Hudson, elephant welfare, food waste, and lead paint. He also approved a moratorium barring New York Citys plastic bag fee from taking effect. This annual survey reports on these developments and other environmental laws enacted in 2017.

Drinking Water

The 2017-18 budget legislation established new regulatory programs to monitor emerging contaminants in public drinking water systems and to mitigate and remediate drinking water impacts caused by solid waste disposal sites. The monitoring law (L. 2017, ch. 57, part M) requires public water systems to test for substances on a list of emerging contaminants promulgated by the Department of Health (DOH). This list will include 1,4-dioxane, perfluorooctane-sulfonic acid, and perfluorooctanoic acid, as well as other substances added based on recommendations from a newly established Drinking Water Quality Council. DOH will set notification levels for listed chemicals; the presence of contaminants in drinking water at concentrations at or above those levels will trigger notification requirements. To address sites causing drinking water contamination, the budget legis....

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