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Environmental Experience

     As the field of environmental law matures, the number of laws and the hosts of regulations and guidances implementing them continues to grow at an alarming rate. By concentrating solely on environmental law, I have gained experience in the areas set out below. This experience includes counseling clients in environmental compliance matters, the performance of environmental due diligence in real estate, lending and corporate transactions, and the representation of clients in federal, state and local enforcement actions as well as in litigation with private parties in connection with environmental controversies.

Industrial Solid and Hazardous Waste. The operation and effect of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act ("RCRA"), and analogous state laws, pertaining to the generation, recycling, handling, transportation and disposal of industrial solid and hazardous waste.

Municipal Solid and Hazardous Waste. The operation and effect of the Solid Waste Disposal Act, and analogous state laws, pertaining to the generation, recycling, handling, transportation, processing and disposal of all classes of municipal waste.

Stormwater Permitting. The applicability of the NPDES Stormwater Permit requirements, as well as that of state and local analogues, to diverse industrial, commercial and residential properties, the permitting itself, as well as the prudent drafting of Storm Water Pollution Prevention Plans to effectively manage federal, state, and local program liability, and representation in TNRCC and EPA enforcement proceedings.

Water and Sewer Utility Regulation. Drafting certificates of convenience and necessity; tariffs and operating rules and procedures for water and sewer utilities; advising clients with respect to the effect of state statutes and regulations on the operation of such utilities and customer relations; representation of clients before the TNRCC in rate increase, abandonment, and cooperation agreement application proceedings.

Underground and Aboveground Storage Tanks. The operation and effect of the federal and state laws pertaining to the registration, installation, operation, maintenance, upgrading, removal of and liability for the remediation of releases from storage tanks.

Water Pollution. The operation and effect of the Clean Water Act, the Drinking Water Act, and their state equivalents in connection with the permitting, generation, handling, treatment, pre-treatment, recycling and discharge of industrial wastewater and stormwater runoff, as well as the requirements of the federal Safe Drinking Water Act governing public and private water systems for the distribution of potable water.

Wetlands. The operation and effect of the Clean Water Act as it relates to waters of the United States and the definition of wetlands, and disturbance, permitting and mitigation matters subject to the jurisdiction of the United States Army Corps of Engineers.

Air Pollution. The operation and effect of the Federal Clean Air Act and the Texas Clean Air Act in relation to permitting (PSD, non-attainment, operating permits, and other related state programs), federal clean air standards (NAAQS, NESHAP, NSPS, MACT, BACT, LAER, etc.), emissions testing requirements, enforcement proceedings and citizen suits, among other things.

Superfund. The operation and effect of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act ("CERCLA" or "Superfund") as it relates to liability for performance of remediation at contaminated sites, or for contribution towards such remediation, by persons such as generators, transporters, and site owners and operators, as well as their corporate successors, parents, and affiliates.

Oil & Gas. The operation and effect of the Texas Natural Resources Code as it relates to the environmental aspects of oil and gas exploration, production, transportation and refining, including recycling, the proper handling transportation and disposal of various produced liquids, chemicals, and oil and gas wastes, and the characterization of wastes and assessment of their status under the Bevill Amendment.

Environmental Due Diligence. Evaluating the environmental liabilities and/or exposure attendant on the purchase and sale of real estate or corporate stock or assets, or the potential environmental impact of a borrower’s current or proposed operations and assets on a lander contemplating a loan to the borrower, as well as customizing environmental terms and conditions to particular transactions and negotiating environmental language for such transactions.

Institutional Environmental Audits. Evaluating a client’s environmental compliance for purposes of ensuring compliance with applicable laws while minimizing discoverable documents relating to any non-compliance, as well as recommending preventative actions and procedures to minimize both civil and criminal environmental risks, personal and corporate, and the documentation advisable to demonstrate proper environmental diligence.

Emergency Planning and Community Right to Know Act ("EPCRA"). The operation and effect of EPCRA as it relates to proper hazardous substance reporting and inventory procedures and requirements to prepare emergency plans for extremely hazardous chemicals.

Toxic Substances. The operation and effect of the Toxic Substances Control Act ("TSCA") as it relates to chemical "pre-manufacture" notification, periodic reporting, proper assessment of the hazards of newly manufactured chemicals, and the proper handling (or avoidance) of hazardous substances such as PCB's, asbestos, and other regulated substances.

Endangered Species. The operation and effect of the Endangered Species Act as it relates to the protection of endangered plant and animal species and their critical habitats and the affect this has on the development and use of property and other natural resources.

OSHA. The operation and effect of the Occupational Safety and Health Act as it relates to hazard communication programs and training, permissible exposure limits for hazardous substances and other aspects of occupational environmental health, including asbestos notification requirements and work practices for asbestos remediations.

Transportation of Hazardous Materials. The operation and effect of the Hazardous Materials Transportation Act, the Ocean Dumping Act, and the Coastal Zone Management Act as they relate to the handling, transport and disposal of toxic substances and other pollutants.

Medical Waste. The operation and effect of state medical waste laws as they relate to the health care industry and the proper management of medical waste.

Insurance Coverage. Evaluation of insurance coverage questions in connection with environmental claims for both insureds and carriers.

The National Environmental Policy Act ("NEPA"). The operation and effect of NEPA and the requirements for environmental assessments and environmental impact statements under NEPA. In this regard I co-drafted an amicus curiae brief on behalf of the Border Trade Alliance filed in a successful effort to overturn a D.C. District Court case holding that the NAFTA was subject to the NEPA environmental impact statement requirement.

FIFRA. The operation and effect of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act and the analogous state law counterparts, including the prosecution of pesticide registration applications and the negotiation of enforcement actions.

Noise Pollution. The operation and effect of the Noise Pollution Act, which regulates the permissible level of noise generated by motor vehicles, airplanes, industrial machinery and railroads.

     My experience also includes considerable research into and analysis of the environmental laws of a number of Latin American countries, particularly Mexico, Chile and Argentina, I have also co-authored the environmental chapter entitled "Environmental Provisions of NAFTA" for "NAFTA & Beyond-A New Framework for Doing Business in the Americas," published in October 1994 by Klewers Martinus Nijhoff Publishers.