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


New Statewide Winery Order: What Wineries Need to Know

Buzz Hines and John Ugai, along with guest speakers, Timothy Simpson and Mehran Ebrahimi from GSI Environmental Inc, discuss "New Statewide Winery Order: What Wineries Need to Know." The new statewide General Waste Discharge...

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AB 525: Laying the Foundation for California's Offshore Wind Industry

Through Assembly Bill (AB) 525, California joined the flurry of activity in the offshore wind industry in 2021 led by the Biden Administration. While offshore wind development in California has lagged behind efforts on...

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John Ugai Joins ELI’s Emerging Leaders Initiative

Farella Braun + Martel is proud to announce that John Ugai, an associate in the firm’s Environmental Law and Energy + Infrastructure Industry groups, was selected to join the 2022 cohort of the Environmental...

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Summary of Latest Federal Action Regarding PFAS

A few considerations practitioners should keep in mind when dealing with contamination involving per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) contamination. The PFAS Action Act of 2021 passed in the House and was received in the...

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The 15th Annual Santa Fe Advanced Conference on Litigating Natural Resource Damages

Jim Colopy is a speaker at the 15th Annual Santa Fe Advanced Conference on Natural Resource Damages on the panel addressing "Federal Jurisdiction: Waters of the United States.” 

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Cannabis Farms in the Neighborhood: Water, Contaminants and Other Proximate Matters

Farella's Buzz Hines, and guest speakers Kari Campbell-Bohard from EpicVeg and Lompoc Valley Cooling and Robert Schultz from Geo Blue Consulting, for a discussion on "Cannabis Farms in the Neighborhood: Water, Contaminants and Other...

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