Environmental

Common sense solutions to complex environmental issues

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Practice Group Chair

Couch White’s environmental practice group has more than 75 years’ experience providing strategic advice and precise execution in sensitive and high-profile proceedings, including energy development projects, resource extraction, infrastructure, commercial and industrial development, and remediation and redevelopment. Typically, the group’s attorneys are involved from the planning stage through the successful completion and construction of our clients’ projects. Working in this fashion ensures a thorough and comprehensive approach to efficiently securing and defending the approvals necessary to allow a project to move forward.

On a day to day basis, the environmental practice group advises clients with respect to complex federal and state regulatory permitting and compliance requirements. These matters often involve differing, but interrelated aspects of substantive environmental laws, land use and zoning and environmental review. Whether a client’s project involves infrastructure, oil & gas production and transport, mining, landfilling or other types of commercial or industrial development requiring air, water, wetland or other substantive environmental permits, the environmental practice group is well versed in preparing and defending applications before local, state and federal agencies, including administrative hearings and any resulting litigation.

The environmental practice group provides sound advice on the environmental review of projects of any size, from residential construction to state-wide utility infrastructure. In addition, the group’s attorneys have a well established reputation for successfully managing the environmental review of publically controversial projects often requiring strategic and creative planning to ensure that client goals are met and a defensible record is created that will withstand any challenge.

When a client’s project requires land use or zoning approvals, securing those approvals is incorporated into the overall permitting approach developed by the environmental practice group attorneys. As necessary, novel and complex zoning issues, including exemptions, County of Monroe and vested rights analyses are considered and merged into the overall project strategy.

Remediation and redevelopment of contaminated properties has become standard operating practice in recent years. The environmental practice group regularly represents clients purchasing, selling and evaluating potentially contaminated properties, and advises those clients regarding contractual protections, potential environmental liabilities and the advisability of entering into voluntary agreements such as New York’s Brownfield Cleanup program. Oil spills, hazardous waste and hazardous materials issues involving governmental enforcement, private-party litigation or on-going compliance requirements are also handled by environmental practice group attorneys on a routine basis.

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