Posts by » Maggie Macdonald

Each year, the New York City Environmental Law & Leadership Institute (NYCELLI) honors one attorney who has, over the course of a remarkable career, been responsible for significant environmental progress in New York City through litigation, advocacy, and policy.  This year’s honoree was Mark Chertok, a principal at Sive, Paget & Riesel P.C. Mark has … Read Post


The United States Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) is currently accepting public comments on a proposed rule overhauling the regulation of hazardous waste generators under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. The proposal draws on over 30 years of experience from EPA, the regulated community, and other stakeholders, and attempts to clarify a notoriously complex statutory … Read Post



In recent months, two New York appellate courts issued significant decisions interpreting the public trust doctrine, which prohibits the alienation of municipal parkland without legislative approval. One of the rulings permitted the expansion of New York University (“NYU”) to proceed; the other enjoined the construction of a mixed-use development adjacent to Citi Field in Queens. … Read Post


Earlier this year, the New York City Department of Sanitation adopted a rule that prohibits leaving electronic waste out for collection with regular trash or recyclables. This rule goes into effect on March 20, 2015, at which time violators will become liable for a civil penalty of $100 per violation.  Electronic waste covered under the … Read Post


Changes are happening in the electronic equipment recycling field; by next year, these changes will significantly affect recyclers, municipalities, property managers, and even individual homeowners.  These include, most notably, an absolute ban on disposing electronic equipment throughout New York State and national changes to the R2 Responsible Recycling and e-Stewards standards, which affect recyclers nationwide. … Read Post


SPR attorneys Dan Chorost and Maggie Macdonald recently secured a trial victory for American Sugar Refining, Inc. (“American Sugar”), owner of the 100-year old “Domino” sugar refinery in Yonkers, New York. The Honorable Judge Mary Smith of the New York State Supreme Court, Westchester County, issued her decision from the bench, awarding American Sugar approximately … Read Post


Earlier this month, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (“DEC”) issued a public notice of its draft State Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (“SPDES”) permit for stormwater discharges from Municipal Separate Storm Sewer Systems (“MS4s”) owned or operated by the City of New York. The following areas are covered under the new MS4 permit: … Read Post


On Monday, EPA announced the Record of Decision which outlines the final plan to clean up the Gowanus Canal Superfund site in Brooklyn, New York. EPA, in its press release, called the site “one of the nation’s most seriously contaminated bodies of water.” The canal was classified a “Superfund site” and added to the EPA’s … Read Post


On April 5, EPA proposed a rule changing the effluent limitation guidelines for stormwater discharges from construction and development point sources. Why is EPA Changing the Standard? These changes reflect the terms of a settlement agreement between EPA and the Wisconsin Builders Association, the National Association of Home Builders and the Utility Water Act Group … Read Post