Many businesses require the specialized knowledge that environmental matters demand. From the common to the complex, our dedicated environmental lawyers possess the collective depth to meet our clients needs in any engagement, large or small, public or discrete.

With decades of experience in litigation and counseling involving the environment and natural resources, including soil, surface water and groundwater, wetlands, species, air, hazardous waste, land use, environmental due diligence and project development, including renewable energy projects, and product stewardship and liability, we add efficiency and certainty where businesses and brands are threatened or at risk.  We can see the big picture, identify the crucial issues, and create practical pathways to resolutions that are targeted, creative, and cost-effective.

Compliance and Litigation Counsel

Our compliance and transactional counselors, regulatory specialists, litigators, and trial attorneys understand the full range of environmental issues faced by both large, national and multinational companies as well as sophisticated California-based enterprises.  Our proven experience in skillfully navigating through agency, regulatory and litigation challenges at every level give our clients a crucial advantage. 

Many of our partners began their careers in the United States Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Justice Environment and Natural Resources Division, or U.S. Attorney offices.  We maintain valuable credibility and a distinctly positive reputation among federal, state, and local government regulators, enforcement authorities, judges, environmental stakeholders, and fellow practitioners.

A National Practice, Focused on the West

Our nationwide practice is particularly focused on the West.  We regularly handle complex compliance and litigation matters in many western states, and we have deep experience in litigation, counseling and regulatory matters throughout California.  Our practice features deep capabilities in addressing the complete range of federal laws and regulations, as well as the ever-growing complexities of state laws and regulations, particularly in California, which often takes a leading role in environmental regulation.  Indeed, with the current relaxing of some federal regulations and expanding efforts at state levels, we remain focused on keeping our clients up-to-date and on sound regulatory footing, saving and preserving resources and reputations.

Industry Focus

We take pride in our readiness and ability to learn our clients’ businesses, which span industries as diverse as waste management, chemicals, transportation, mines and quarrying, agriculture, wine, manufacturing and production, food processing, consumer products, construction, technology, energy and renewable energy, and pharmaceuticals.  Many of our partners have practiced exclusively in environmental matters for decades.  We take a proactive and practical approach to compliance and work to avoid litigation and unnecessary conflict where possible.  But when the other side is determined to fight, or compromise cannot be achieved, we are ready and able to adjudicate issues in administrative hearings, writ proceedings, and trial.

Firm Highlights

News

Lawdragon Names 7 Farella Lawyers Among “Leaders in Environmental Law”

Northern California legal powerhouse Farella Braun + Martel is pleased to announce that seven lawyers were selected to The Lawdragon Green 500: 2024 Leaders in Environmental Law . Farella lawyers selected for inclusion: Sarah...

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News

Farella Announces 2024 Leadership Council on Legal Diversity Pathfinders: Taylor Rottjakob and John Ugai

Farella Braun + Martel is proud to announce that senior associates  Taylor E. Rottjakob and John M. Ugai have been named 2024 Leadership Council on Legal Diversity (LCLD) Pathfinders. Pathfinders have been identified as...

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Publication

Where Are We Now, Following Maui County, Sackett, and the Latest EPA Guidance?

The last few years have seen significant developments in our understanding of the reach of the federal Clean Water Act (CWA). (Indeed, “reach” here can be interpreted literally and figuratively.) The two issues plaguing...

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Publication

New PFAS Federal Drinking Water Standards Create Major Liability and Litigation Risk

The United States Environmental Protection Agency has released a final regulation setting individual drinking water maximum contaminant levels (MCLs) for five per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). These MCLs are incredibly stringent due to EPA’s stated concerns...

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Event

Clean Repowering: How to Capitalize on Fossil Grid Connections to Unlock Clean Energy Growth

Farella’s Linda Gilleran and Chris Rendall-Jackson and Rocky Mountain Institute’s (RMI) Uday Varadarajan are presenting the session “Clean Repowering: How to Capitalize on Fossil Grid Connections to Unlock Clean Energy Growth” at the ACG...

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News

EPA Designates PFOA and PFOS as Hazardous Substances

Don Sobelman provided expert commentary in the  Chemical & Engineering News article "EPA Designates PFOA and PFOS as Hazardous Substances." Excerpt from the article: Lawyers are warning anyone purchasing an industrial site where PFOA...

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Publication

Wind Energy Project Approvals and Tax Credits Look To Outpace Macroeconomic and Supply Chain Headwinds in 2024

A snapshot of the renewable wind industry on October 31, 2023, captures many of the current challenges and opportunities for the industry and regulatory agencies heading into 2024.  That day, the world’s largest offshore...

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Publication

New PFAS Listing Under Superfund Will Lead to Major Expansion of Liability

On April 19, 2024, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) announced its final rule designating perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) as hazardous substances under Section 102(a) of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation...

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