Environmental & Natural Resources law is not only complex and constantly evolving, but also highly technical. Michael Best’s team of environmental lawyers understands not only the law and the science of environmental regulations, but also our clients’ business needs and how to help achieve them.
We have more than a century of collective experience in environmental law, assisting with everything from compliance counseling to enforcement defense. Clients know they can count on us to give them strategic, proactive advice in succinct, understandable terms.
Members of our team have served in government, industry, trade associations, and utilities. We maintain relationships with key regulators and legislators at both the state and federal levels, and we work closely with technical staff and environmental consultants and experts. Our experience, approach, and connections enable us to help clients find creative solutions that can transform risk into reward, such as cross-industry emissions agreements or converting waste into energy for sale.
Climate Change & Sustainability
Helping clients strive for a sustainable future while promoting responsible commerce, through counsel on matters such as carbon markets, emission credits, and emissions-related agreements; green building construction and retrofits; corporate sustainability programs; project development and financing; Greenhouse Gas Protocol standards; water conservation and appropriation; and energy efficiency initiatives.
Contaminated Property Development & Remediation
Helping manage our clients’ liability by communicating with government agencies, fostering cooperation among potentially responsible parties (PRPs), and working with technical staff and consultants to find innovative remediation technologies, as well as helping assemble funding packages to address environmental liabilities.
Environmental Compliance Counseling & Advocacy
Counseling clients on a wide variety of regulatory matters including environmental permitting, project design to minimize permitting obligations, compliance and risk management training, environmental management systems, compliance audits and self-policing, environmental cleanups, emissions and discharge regulation, hazardous waste management, workplace safety, and government relations and policymaking.
Environmental Enforcement Defense & Litigation
Representing clients in environmental disputes involving a variety of regulatory programs, including agency enforcement actions alleging regulatory violations in major program areas (air, water, solid waste, hazardous waste, wetland, or stormwater); “takings” and other alleged violations of the Endangered Species Act; citizen suits and claims for injunctive relief brought under federal law; toxic tort class actions; contaminated site litigation; and state court actions.
Working with clients to strategically navigate the federal laws and regulations relating to the use and treatment of water resources and restrictions on pollution of water. Our extensive experience includes regulatory matters; permitting consulting; post NPDEs challenges; water quality, Total Max Daily Loads (TMDLs), and stormwater; compliance counseling and audits; wetlands issues; Safe Drinking Water Act compliance and counseling, water quantity issues; sediment cleanup; and climate change and water impacts.
In addition, our Environmental & Natural Resources group does substantial work in the following areas, among others:
- Siting, permitting, and regulatory approvals under local, state, and federal law
- Transactional due diligence
- Compliance advice, audits, and training
- Risk assessment and risk management
- Environmental litigation
- Defense of government enforcement actions
- Regulation of air emissions and greenhouse gases (including emissions trading programs)
- Water appropriation and water discharge issues
- Crisis planning and response
- Brownfield redevelopment
- Soil and groundwater cleanup (including state- and federal-led Superfund sites)
- Wetland permitting and mitigation
- Hazardous materials management (including chemical and pesticide regulation)
- Toxic Substances Control Act
- Spill response and reporting
- Community right-to-know laws
- Noise and odor regulation
- Endangered species protections
- Historic preservation
- Land use regulation
- Corporate and public sector sustainability programs