Environment, Energy & Resources |
Perkins Coie's Environment, Energy & Resources group has the experience, depth and breadth to address any environmental, energy or natural resource issue. We represent private companies and public agencies in counseling and litigation matters involving the full range of these issues. With more than 85 EER attorneys in offices across the United States, our group is widely recognized for its ability to help plan a project's development, timely secure the necessary permits, reduce the likelihood of any litigation, and help facilitate post-development and ongoing compliance and regulatory contacts. We help clients obtain the necessary governmental approvals and achieve and maintain regulatory compliance for projects and facilities of all kinds – including industrial and manufacturing facilities; residential subdivisions; commercial and mixed-use developments; oil and gas projects including exploratory projects, refineries, pipelines and distribution projects; renewable energy projects and transmission corridors; mining and timber projects; transportation infrastructure such as highways, ports, airports, and transit lines; schools, hospitals and research & development facilities; water supply reservoirs and flood control projects; solid waste, composting, and recycling facilities; and telecommunications and utility projects.
Our attorneys have extensive experience handling a broad range of legal requirements governing environmental review and disclosure; air emissions and climate change; water quality and supply (including surface and ground waters); wetlands and endangered species; protection of cultural and historic resources; development within a coastal zone; development on federal lands; the handling, treatment and disposal of toxic and hazardous substances; environmental investigations and remediation; energy development and transmission; and compliance with building codes. We work closely with environmental consultants and experts in all fields related to the practice to maximize efficiency while achieving the best results for our clients. We also understand the strategies for integrating the applicable requirements under federal law with the state and local rules to avoid delays and duplications of effort. And while we strive to solve our clients’ problems through planning and negotiation, we can and do litigate disputes when necessary – before administrative tribunals and in the state and federal courts at both the trial level and on appeal.
Chambers USA ranks our environmental group as one of the nation's top national practices, our Oregon, Washington, Alaska, and Idaho offices as "Band 1," and 14 of our environmental attorneys individually. Our EER lawyers also have high ratings in the International Who's Who of Environment Lawyers, Super Lawyers and Best Lawyers; and 25 Perkins lawyers in Alaska, Arizona, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, California, Colorado and Washington, D.C. are individually listed. Some of our EER Practices include:
Commercial and Real Estate Transactions
We frequently advise clients on the environmental and permitting aspects of commercial and real estate transactions. We work closely with corporate attorneys and environmental consultants to conduct due diligence in connection with financing and acquisitions. We also help clients negotiate indemnification agreements and secure environmental insurance, post-claim coverage, and other protections from environmental liability.
Endangered Species & Wildlife
Our lawyers have extensive experience with international, federal and local wildlife laws. We help clients obtain authorization for activities that could impact species and habitats; we develop conservation programs for nonprofit organizations, landowners and developers; we defend against lawsuits that challenge resource utilization activities by mines, oil and gas producers, and forest product companies. We represent clients in civil and criminal enforcement proceedings. For wildlife issues, our clients include private landowners; extractive industry companies; real estate developers; trade associations; governmental entities; nonprofit groups; and Native American tribes.
Our energy lawyers work in almost every area of the energy industry. We represent the largest national investor-owned utilities and start-up independent power producers in both regulated and unregulated settings. Our energy work includes state and federal regulation, commercial transactions, project development, finance, and all aspects of project permitting. We regularly represent clients before agencies and courts that affect their activities. Our work on energy projects includes projects fueled by natural gas, electricity, oil, coal, ethanol, bio-diesel, methane, LNG, geothermal, solar, wind, hydroelectric and other renewable technologies.
Members of Perkins Coie's Environmental Litigation group represent clients in some of the nation's most significant environmental litigation matters. These matters include multi-party cleanup sites and projects, and high-stakes permit challenges in state or federal trial courts, appellate courts, administrative tribunals and alternative dispute resolution forums. Our environmental litigation experience includes cases under CERCLA, the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, the Endangered Species Act, the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, NEPA and state environmental assessment statutes, and other federal, state and local environmental and land use laws.
Legislation, Regulation & Policy
We advocate for our clients at all levels of government, assisting them during the development, implementation and revision of legislation and regulatory policy involving EER issues. Attorneys based in our Washington, D.C. office assist our nationwide clients with federal legislative and regulatory matters, while our attorneys throughout the country provide similar assistance at regional and state levels. Our lawyers include former administration officials, former members of the Department of Justice's environmental divisions and former legislators, attorneys and advisors to various state governments.
Our extractive industry clients must frequently overcome challenges relating to the financing, exploration, development and production of their mineral properties. They turn to us because we have played a leading role for our clients in projects in the United States and around the world, and we are the leading law firm for project permitting and development of mineral properties in Alaska.
Oil & Gas
Lawyers in our Alaska and lower 48 offices provide a full range of legal services to the oil and gas industry. Our clients include leading oil and gas producers, pipeline and storage companies, refiners, service companies, Alaska Native Corporations and institutional advisors and lenders. We have substantial expertise in project development; commercial transactions; finance; mergers, acquisitions and dispositions; tax; litigation and disputes; environmental permitting; and federal and state regulatory matters.
Permitting, Compliance & Audits
We work with clients to obtain federal, state and local permits for new and existing facilities. We frequently represent clients in administrative hearings and judicial appeals regarding environmental and land use permits, and advise clients on NIMBY challenges, regulatory requirements and permit compliance. We conduct environmental audits and help clients to develop and implement environmental compliance management systems. We represent clients in litigation involving hazardous substance contamination, natural resource damages and insurance coverage. We defend clients in civil and criminal enforcement actions and against citizen suits.
We provide counsel and assistance to our project developer clients on all aspects of their projects from inception to post-closing remediation, including development, site selection, project design, land and water rights acquisition, environmental assessment, federal and state permitting, local land use requirements, management and plans, and regulatory reporting. We are familiar with the economic constraints new projects face, the critical importance of maintaining schedules, and the demands of lenders and investors.
Water Resources Policy, Water Rights, Water Quality
Our water law attorneys assist clients to overcome both traditional and novel challenges associated with water resource management. Our work ranges from participating in major national and international water resource policy issues to obtaining water rights for local development activities to assisting owner/operators of water treatment facilities to control emissions, expenses and exposure. Many of our water lawyers have regulatory and technical backgrounds, as well as experience working with or leading government agencies, with thorough knowledge of federal and state permitting and administrative proceedings, or as litigators at the highest levels.