Couch White Logo

Permitting/Land Use

As part of our diligence and operational advice to our clients, the attorneys at Couch White analyze local, state, and federal environmental and land use permitting matters to ensure that a proposed portfolio of renewable energy projects are legally sound and the projects being pursued have completed all necessary reviews and approvals for construction and operation.

Couch White completes due diligence for land use and zoning, environmental review requirements, and local, state, and federal environmental permitting and consultation. Our work also includes identifying potential legal defects, risks, missing and necessary approvals or consultations, and identifying potential cures, including advising on the process to address them. Our analysis also includes identifying project mitigation requirements, approval conditions, and ongoing financial and operational obligations for the renewable energy projects to ensure our clients invest in projects with robust, defensible approvals (or that, in the alternative, the transaction includes a commercial solution to the risk presented). We also have extensive experience regarding remediation issues, Phase I Environmental Site Assessments, and development strategies (including available tax credits) for contaminated or brownfield properties. Additional detail on Couch White’s environmental group can be found here.

The Firm’s representative experience includes assistance with obtaining, defending, or diligencing:

  • Various land use approvals including Site Plan and Special Use Permits,  Use and area variances, and strategies related to these approvals.
  • Zoning changes and amendments, and moratoriums, during and after permitting is complete
  • Environmental review, including the New York State Environmental Quality Review Act (SEQRA)
  • Consultations and permitting for state and federal Threatened and Endangered Species, Wetlands and waterbodies and Historic and archaeological requirements
  • Floodplain, highway, building permit and other development/construction permits
  • Phase I ESAs, Reliance Letters, and advice regarding complications presented by contaminated properties