Environmental

Overview

The firm's Environmental Practice Group specializes in all aspects of sophisticated environmental transactions, regulatory compliance and overseeing litigation. Our lawyers guide clients through the complex web of federal, state and local environmental regulation to help them successfully manage environmental risk and maximize the value and development potential of real estate. Our clients include developers, investors (including institutional investors, equity funds and REITs), lenders, major retailers, property owners, landlords, tenants and public agencies seeking our advice on the acquisition, disposition, development and management of real property that may have groundwater or soil contamination, petroleum leaks, underground or above ground storage tanks, ongoing remediation, claims of liability, endangered species, notices of violation, agency enforcement proceedings and other potential environmental liabilities.

In transactional and regulatory compliance matters, we assist clients on environmental due diligence for their acquisitions, remediation and Brownfield development projects, obtaining environmental insurance, allocating risk amongst buyers, sellers and other parties, and negotiations with regulatory agencies. Our attorneys work closely with clients and agencies to insure that projects obtain the needed environmental review and permitting approvals. Our team members have negotiated health-based risk assessments, cleanup standards, immunity agreements, prospective purchaser agreements, covenants not to sue, "comfort" letters, cleanup and abatement orders, settlement agreements, "no further action" letters, proposed site assessments, remedial action plans, monitoring programs and other remediation and closure documents. Our attorneys have handled water and air pollution permitting and endangered species issues. In undertaking the foregoing matters our lawyers have worked extensively with the federal and state Environmental Protection Agencies, the State Water Resources Quality Control Board, several California Regional Water Quality Control Boards, the California Department of Toxic Substances Control, the California State Lands Commission, the South Coast and Bay Area Air Quality Management Districts, the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, the California Department of Fish & Game, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the federal Bureau of Land Management and various other federal, state and local agencies.

We oversee prosecution and defense of common law and statutory environmental cost recovery actions, such as those under CERCLA, RCRA, and CHSAA, with the aim of either resolving disputes quickly and efficiently if possible, or aggressively managing litigation of them through trial when necessary. Our lawyers have achieved creative, cost-effective results on behalf of clients which reduced or eliminated their liabilities, or compensated them for their losses.

The firm's Environmental Practice includes:

  • Environmental Due Diligence and Risk Analysis for Acquisitions
  • Negotiating Environmental Risk in Purchases and Sales, Loans and Leases
  • Environmental Insurance Retention, Claims and Coverage
  • Brownfield Development or Re-Positioning of Impacted Properties
  • Urban Core Infill And Redevelopment
  • Endangered Species Counseling
  • Environmental Auditing
  • Environmental Permitting, Including Air and Water Pollution Permitting
  • Mold, Asbestos, And Indoor Air Quality Matters
  • Federal and State Superfund and Common Law Cost Recovery Litigation
  • CEQA/NEPA Compliance

For more information regarding our entitlement and environmental review under CEQA and NEPA, please see our Land Use Practice description.