Providing strategic and cost-effective counsel, we assist our clients in meeting state and federal environmental permitting obligations. Our lawyers evaluate and defend administrative, civil and criminal enforcement actions, evaluate environmental liabilities and risk allocations associated with corporate and property transactions, coordinate legislative and administrative lawmaking, and facilitate real estate development and redevelopment.
We are dedicated to understanding our clients’ business objectives and to providing timely and sound legal advice to support these efforts. We are heavily involved with the oil and gas industry in Ohio and remain very active in national and state industry associations relevant to our clients’ businesses.
Our team regularly publishes articles and presents at trade association meetings, continuing legal education seminars and bar association committees. Five of the practice group’s attorneys maintain an “AV” rating from Martindale-Hubbell, one of the oldest and most trusted peer review services in the legal profession. Practice leader Scott Doran earned his master’s degree in toxicology, works closely with our clients’ technical consultants to develop strong and defensible strategies, and has been recognized by Chambers and Partners as a top environmental practitioner in Ohio.
- Environmental compliance, permitting and administrative appeals: We work with our clients’ internal and external technical resources to identify optimal permitting strategies resulting in reasonable and supportable air, water and waste management permits; evaluate and implement internal environmental compliance programs; and represent clients in the defense of administrative, civil and criminal proceedings involving alleged non-compliance with environmental laws and regulations.
- Land development and redevelopment: Our attorneys have assisted with some of the most significant development projects in Ohio. We work with federal, state and local agencies to address environmental permitting associated with land development, including federal and state wetland and stream permitting, storm water discharge permitting, endangered species and historical resource preservation, and demands for and preparation of environmental impact statements. We partner with industry groups to effect positive land use legislation and rulemaking, including assisting with the drafting of Ohio’s wetland and stream permitting program. Our lawyers also evaluate and allocate environmental risks and liabilities associated with the redevelopment of historically impacted properties, including under Ohio’s Voluntary Action Program (“VAP”).
- Oil and gas development, production and transmission: The firm has deeply been engaged in the ongoing development of the Marcellus and Utica Shale plays through its representation of exploration, production and midstream companies, including in matters involving environmental permitting, eminent domain/condemnation litigation, the development and construction of pipelines, terminals and processing facilities and related financing and construction documentation, in addition to our work assisting with the drafting and evaluation of oil and gas leases.
- Site remediation and cost allocation: Our experience includes the negotiation of federal and state administrative and judicial orders requiring remedial investigation/feasibility studies and remedial actions. We represent clients involved in in significant multi-party CERCLA cost recovery/contribution actions, both asserting and defending claims for contribution, and we also provide legal strategies to identify and implement effective solutions to cost allocation and remedial actions.
- Underground storage tanks: We work with our clients to ensure compliance with Ohio’s robust underground storage tank (UST) program. Our team also assists businesses with claims for reimbursement from the Petroleum Underground Storage Tank Release Fund and represents entities in Bureau of Underground Storage Tank Regulation (BUSTR) enforcement proceedings.
We represent large and small businesses, public entities, and individuals in complying with federal, state and local environmental regulations. Regardless of the type of regulated entity, we focus on understanding our clients’ objectives, provide concise and cost-effective legal analyses and options, and work hand-in-hand with our clients’ technical resources to achieve satisfactory results.
- Manufacturing companies: advise + coordinate environmental permitting requirements, including air and water discharge permits, waste disposal and recycling requirements, emergency planning and community right-to-know requirements, storm water permitting, environmental compliance auditing, and defense of enforcement actions
- Midstream oil, natural gas and natural gas liquids pipeline operators: assisting with environmental permitting, including state and federal stream and wetland permitting, air permitting, and storm water permitting; understanding and complying with Ohio’s regulatory structure and programs and the permitting and operation of Class II brine disposal wells
- Land development: working with land development interests, ranging from 5,000-acre planned developments to the redevelopment of former industrial facilities, including evaluating potential environmental obstacles to development, devising cost-effective solutions, and assuring full and complete applications for stream and wetland permits and storm water permits; working through endangered species protection and historic preservation issues; evaluating the impact from local wastewater management plans (208 Plans), special watershed limitations, and on-site wastewater treatment and disposal requirements and options; working with our clients’ environmental consultants to evaluate short- and long-term liability concerns, assist with the identification of public funding options, properly allocate environmental risks and costs, and obtain any necessary state or federal approvals, including a No Further Action Letter and Covenant Not to Sue under the Ohio Voluntary Action Program
For more information on our environmental and natural resources services, please contact Scott Doran.