• American College of Environmental Lawyers
  • Best Lawyers
  • Chambers USA

Chris Locke

  • 415.954.4486
  • |

Chris Locke, a senior partner and former chair of the Environmental Law Department at Farella Braun + Martel, has more than 30 years of experience in counseling and representation of clients in all areas of environmental law and litigation. He is a Fellow of the American College of Environmental Lawyers.

Mr. Locke’s practice includes defense of federal and state enforcement actions, representation in actions involving CERCLA, RCRA, the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, the Endangered Species Act, and other federal and state statutory and common law claims, as well as class action litigation, cost recovery litigation, and private attorneys general actions and citizen suits.  He also assists clients with internal investigations, regulatory compliance and project development strategies and proceedings, including representation in permitting and NEPA/CEQA/land use proceedings, and related litigation.

Drawing on his experience as a former federal prosecutor, Mr. Locke’s practice includes grand jury representation and defense of criminal enforcement actions.  He is also a member of the firm's Product Law practice, emphasizing product liability defense, class action defense, regulatory representation, and product stewardship and sustainability.

Mr. Locke’s clients represent a wide range of public and private interests, including consumer products, energy, manufacturing, mining, real estate development, scientific research, technology, telecommunications, transportation, and wine businesses.

He is recognized by Chambers USA as a leading lawyer in environmental law in California and is listed in Best Lawyers in America (Environmental Law and Litigation – Environmental), Who's Who Legal, and in Northern California Super Lawyers. Mr. Locke is a frequent lecturer and author on developments in environmental law, product law, criminal enforcement and defense, trial strategy and evidence.


  • Fellow, American College of Environmental Lawyers (2017-present)
  • Member, Leadership Council, Environmental Law Institute (2002-present)
  • Section on Energy, Environment and Resources, American Bar Association
  • Environmental Litigation Committee, Section on Litigation, American Bar Association
  • Federal Bar Association, San Francisco Chapter
  • Member and Past President, Board of Directors, Legal Aid of Marin (1996-2003, 2010-2017)
  • Member, Board of Directors, Executive Committee, Environmental Law Institute (2002-2010)
  • Assistant U.S. Attorney, Northern District of California (1983-1986)
  • Trial Attorney, Criminal Division, U.S. Department of Justice (1981-1983)
  • Research Analyst/Investigator, Select Committee on Assassinations, U.S. House of Representatives (1976-1978) 
  • Legislative Assistant, Congressman Christopher J. Dodd, U.S. House of Representatives (1975-1976)
Farella’s Environmental Law Department is recognized by Chambers USA as a top tier environmental practice in California, and by U.S. News – Best Lawyers “Best Law Firms” as a top tier firm nationally for its environmental and mass torts practice areas.