Our lawyers in the Environmental Practice Group work with clients throughout the country to resolve complicated environmental conflicts, reduce environmental risk, and pragmatically integrate client operations, regulatory compliance and client goals. We routinely advise on complex compliance issues, conduct due diligence for investment transactions, negotiate cleanups, help developers structure and finance Brownfield deals, resolve notices of violation, pursue cost recovery actions, and obtain air and water permits. Our constant focus is helping our clients implement practical and, as necessary, creative solutions by bringing to bear our experience, our understanding of the client’s business, and our command of available regulatory tools. These tools may include voluntary cleanup, Brownfields Agreements and even hard-fought litigation. We work closely with our clients, technical consultants and others to establish the data necessary for informed decision making. This approach has won our clients the respect of their community, regulators and environmental groups.
While we urge the early identification and resolution of issues during transactional due diligence or through self-audits, occasions arise when litigation is the best option. Robinson Bradshaw has represented clients in government and private cost-recovery actions; handled insurance coverage disputes; defended citizens’ suits, national toxic tort and asbestos claims; resolved government debarment actions; and defended clients in criminal investigations and trials.
Honors & Awards
- Chambers USA: Americas Leading Lawyers for Business, environmental, 2009-19
- U.S. News – Best Lawyers, Best Law Firms, Charlotte Tier 1 for environmental law, 2011-20; Charlotte Tier 1 for natural resources law, 2011-12
Identified, quantified and isolated alleged $450 million environmental liabilities associated with the purchase of substantially all of the manufacturing and real property assets of a Chapter 11 bankruptcy debtor; resolved community concerns about an adjacent high quality river; engaged in extensive negotiations with the Environmental Protection Agency to obtain a comfort letter; obtained a Brownfields Agreement from the state of North Carolina; and negotiated landfill closures from a predecessor to the Chapter 11 debtor.
Negotiated a unique response to historic PCB contamination at a scrap metal yard with the EPA, the state of North Carolina, a predecessor owner/operator and adjacent railroads.
Managed a politically sensitive cleanup adjacent to a residential area as a manufacturing plant shuttered and workers were laid off.
Represented a multinational energy company in negotiating remedial action at an EPA National Priority List Site.
Assist dry cleaner owners with entry into the Dry Cleaners Solvent Cleanup Trust Fund and with their response to claims for alleged contamination.
Assist gas station owners with entry into the Leaking Petroleum Underground Storage Tank Cleanup Trust Fund and with their response to claims for alleged contamination.
Litigation, Superfund Cost Recovery, Insurance Coverage and Toxic Tort
Serve as national litigation coordinating counsel for defending product liability claims, including asbestos claims, against manufacturers of valves, building products and security fencing.
Serve as group counsel for organizations of potentially responsible parties in Superfund claims by the EPA and state regulators, negotiating settlements among the parties, internal allocations and strategic defense initiatives.
Serve as lead counsel for policyholders in coverage litigation in North Carolina, South Carolina, Pennsylvania and Florida.
Serve as lead defense counsel in a dispute concerning the testing of large diesel engines in AVL Powertrain Engineering, Inc. v. Fairbanks Morse Engine, U.S. District Court, Western District of Wisconsin, Case No. 14-CV-877.
Manage nationwide defense of asbestos and mold litigation.
Represented an international network infrastructure provider in an insurance coverage dispute involving a major cable television system in Ireland.
Defend federal CERCLA environmental cost recovery lawsuits across the United States.
Defended state enforcement action alleging the illegal disposal of thousands of tons of construction and demolition debris.
Recover cleanup costs from potentially responsible parties and state cleanup funds.
Compel nearby property owners to clean up contaminated sites.
Convince insurance companies to defend and cover environmental claims.
Guide debtors, creditors and trustees through bankruptcy proceedings that involve environmental issues or asbestos liabilities.
Challenge alleged OSHA violations and noncompliance.
Defend citizen suits.
Governmental Investigations, Enforcement Actions and Debarment
Obtained an exemption determination regarding complex hazardous waste management practices after a Resource Conservation Recovery Act inspection indicated that a notice of violation was likely to issue.
Negotiated a manufacturer’s continued wastewater discharges after the local water authority refused to accept waste water due to multiple instances of discharges causing upset to a municipal waste water treatment plant.
Respond to government information requests arising from whistleblower claims of illegal dumping or from CERCLA action.
Advise clients regarding unannounced inspections and facility searches.
Defend proceedings to debar contracting with federal or state agencies due to alleged environmental noncompliance.
Address disclosure and reporting issues raised by investigations.
Corporate Compliance and Due Diligence
Identify, quantify and negotiate environmental litigation and toxic tort due diligence, and negotiates comprehensive environmental indemnities and/or environmental insurance coverage for transactions ranging up to $2.6 billion.
Advise manufacturers regarding compliance with various environmental laws and regulations, including Resource Conservation and Recovery Act provisions governing generators of hazardous wastes, and applicable exemptions.
Evaluated the regulatory status of pharmaceutical wastes generated during hospital patient care and waste streams generated by chemical manufacturers under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act.
Advise equipment manufacturers regarding compliance with Clean Air Act regulations governing emissions from non-road compression ignition engines and participation in the EPA's Transition Program for Equipment Manufacturers.
Coordinate the work of consultants to identify permitting issues or problems with hazardous waste handling, air emissions or waste water discharges.
Advise clients regarding compliance with state property transfer statutes.
Negotiate terms of pollution insurance products.
Negotiate permit standards with regulatory authorities and shepherds permit applications through the public review process.
Property Development, Endangered Species, Wetlands, Stormwater and Erosion Control
Represent multiple real estate developers in the application for and negotiation of Brownfields Agreements to redevelop contaminated sites into mixed-use developments, including student housing, high end residential, retail and commercial space.
Negotiated a favorable Habitat Conservation Plan under the Endangered Species Act after a pair of bald eagles chose to build a nest in the middle of a housing development in active construction.
Obtain wetland permits and successfully challenges allegations of illegal filling.
Successfully challenge federal allegations of stormwater violations against multiple land developers.
News & Events
- Feb. 21, 2020
- Feb. 11, 2020
- Jan. 22, 2020
- Nov. 1, 2019
- Aug. 15, 2019
- May 6, 2019
- Jan. 28, 2019
- Jan. 2, 2019
- Nov. 1, 2018
- Oct. 24, 2018
- Oct. 24, 2018
- Aug. 15, 2018
- May 31, 2018
- Jan. 30, 2018
- Jan. 3, 2018
- Nov. 2, 2017
- Oct. 25, 2017
- Eight Named “Lawyer of the Year”Aug. 16, 2017
- May 31, 2017
- Jan. 26, 2017
- Nov. 1, 2016
- Eight Attorneys Named "Lawyer of the Year"Aug. 15, 2016
- June 2, 2016
- Feb. 4, 2016
- Jan. 27, 2016
- Nov. 2, 2015
- Aug. 18, 2015
- May 28, 2015
- Jan. 21, 2015
- Eighteen Robinson Bradshaw Attorneys Named to North Carolina’s 2015 Legal Elite, Legal Elite Hall of FameJan. 8, 2015
- Robinson Bradshaw Nationally Ranked in 2015 “Best Law Firms” by U.S. News & World Report and Best LawyersRankings include recognition as a Tier 1 firm in 38 practice areas in CharlotteNov. 6, 2014
- Nov. 4, 2014
- Firm Topped North Carolina Rankings in Eight Practice AreasAug. 19, 2014
- May 23, 2014
- Jan. 21, 2014
- Eighteen Robinson Bradshaw Attorneys Included Among North Carolina’s 2014 ‘Legal Elite,’ ‘Legal Elite Hall of Fame’Jan. 6, 2014
- Robinson Bradshaw Named to 2014 ‘Best Law Firms’ Rankings by U.S. News & World Report and Best LawyersRankings Include Recognition as Tier 1 Firm in 38 Practice Areas in CharlotteNov. 1, 2013
- Aug. 15, 2013
- May 24, 2013
- Six Shareholders Among State’s Top 100 Attorneys, Two in Top 10Jan. 18, 2013
- Nineteen Robinson Bradshaw Attorneys Included Among North Carolina’s 2013 ‘Legal Elite,’ ‘Legal Elite Hall of Fame’Jan. 7, 2013
- Dec. 26, 2012
- Robinson Bradshaw Named to 2013 ‘Best Law Firms’ Rankings by U.S. News & World Report and Best LawyersRankings Include Recognition as Tier 1 Firm in 35 Practice Areas in CharlotteNov. 1, 2012
- June 28, 2012
- June 8, 2012
- Feb. 7, 2012
- Seven Shareholders Among State’s Top 100 Attorneys, Two in Top 10Jan. 23, 2012
- Robinson Bradshaw Named to 2011-12 ‘Best Law Firms’ Rankings by U.S. News & World Report, Best LawyersNov. 1, 2011
- Charlotte Firm Leads All Other N.C. Firms in Ranked Attorneys, No. 1 Practice Areas for Third-Straight YearJune 14, 2011
- Seven Shareholders Included Among State’s Top 100 Attorneys, Two in the Top 10Jan. 21, 2011
- Charlotte-Based Firm Recognized in 26 Practice AreasSept. 15, 2010
- Forty-Six Robinson Bradshaw Attorneys Named North Carolina Super Lawyers, North Carolina Rising Stars for 2010Jan. 28, 2010
- Twenty-Five Robinson Bradshaw Attorneys Named Among ‘Legal Elite,’ ‘Legal Elite Hall of Fame’ in North CarolinaJan. 26, 2010
- June 18, 2009
- Jan. 23, 2009
- Dec. 31, 2008
- Sept. 19, 2008
- June 14, 2008
- Jan. 23, 2008
- Dec. 31, 2007
- June 15, 2007
- Jan. 26, 2007
- Sept. 6, 2006
- June 2, 2006
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