Farella Braun + Martel's Environmental Law Department has substantial experience advising and representing clients in all areas involving hazardous substances and wastes, including regulatory compliance counseling, site remediation and cost recovery, health and safety, and enforcement defense. Our Hazardous Substances and Wastes practice combines compliance-focused attorneys and litigators whose collective depth allows us to meet our clients' needs in any engagement, large or small, public or discrete. Farella Braun + Martel is one of the few firms able to offer clients a multidisciplinary team of attorneys to handle the many facets of a hazardous substances and wastes matter. We seamlessly integrate attorneys within our environmental practices as well as toxic tort litigation, white collar criminal defense, insurance coverage, land use, real estate, construction, employment, and corporate practices.

Farella environmental attorneys have counseled and defended a variety of industrial and other corporate clients on hazardous waste and hazardous materials administrative, civil, and criminal matters. Several of our partners prosecuted Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) actions during their tenure at the U.S. Justice Department's Environmental Enforcement Section. Our hazardous waste/hazardous materials regulatory counseling work ranges from seeking permits and permit revisions, appeals of permit decisions, to analyzing complex hazardous waste regulatory interpretation issues. We have advised clients regarding negotiating, and implementing RCRA corrective actions, and defended federal and state enforcement proceedings in California, Oregon, Arizona, New Mexico, and Hawaii.

We have represented Potentially Responsible Parties (PRPs) at federal and state Superfund sites around the country, advising PRPs regarding site remediation as well as cost recovery. We have managed consultants, located and organized PRPs, negotiated the terms of administrative consent orders, devised strategies for responding to administrative directives for investigation and remediations, negotiated and participated in cost allocation proceedings with other PRPs to devise workable cost allocation schemes, negotiated with federal government PRPs to obtain funding, and crafted strategies for the pursuit of recalcitrant parties. We have successfully prosecuted and defended cost-recovery actions in a variety of Western states. Through this work, we have developed substantial experience in the technical issues affecting allocation of liability for chlorinated solvent plumes, including fate and transport, groundwater modeling, risk assessment with an emphasis on vapor intrusion issues, and natural attenuation or degradation product liability claims.

Our Health & Safety experience covers a range of environmental health and safety subspecialties, including OSHA and Cal/OSHA compliance counseling, due diligence reviews, regulatory representation, and defense of civil and criminal enforcement actions. We have conducted and overseen investigations of workplace accidents and defended clients against citations issued by OSHA (or state equivalents). We have also investigated and defended "whistleblower" allegations involving power plant facilities, power transmission facilities, geothermal plants, the natural gas industry, radioactive waste and disposal facilities, and oil refineries. We work with our white collar crime attorneys to defend clients against criminal prosecution of occupational safety violations by state and local authorities. We also have more than a decade of experience relating to pipeline safety, including U.S. Department of Transportation regulatory issues surrounding the safe operation of natural gas and hazardous liquid pipelines. 

Firm Highlights

Publication

How Changes to California’s Fire Regulations Could Affect North Coast Housing Projects

Both the Board of Forestry and the State Senate are considering changes to state fire regulations that would affect real estate development in California. The first set of changes can be found in the...

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Event

The Gorilla in the CERCLA Closet: Natural Resources Damages (Webcast)

Sarah Bell will present "The Gorilla in the CERCLA Closet: Natural Resources Damages" session at the ALI-CLE Environmental Litigation webcast.  She will cover: Creative applications of NRD claims Marshalling the NRD trustee’s case NRD...

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Event

Legal Trends in the Wine Industry

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News

Farella Braun + Martel Recognized in 2021 Chambers High Net Worth Guide

Farella Braun + Martel’s Private Client Industry Group earned recognition in the 2021 Chambers High Net Worth (HNW) guide as a leading firm in the Private Wealth Law category for Northern California. A publication...

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News

Farella Braun + Martel Pursues Midsize Mansfield Rule Certification

Farella Braun + Martel is proud to announce that it is participating in the second iteration of the Midsize Mansfield Rule certification process, which aims to increase the representation of diverse lawyers in leadership...

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Publication

10 Tips for Mandatory Covid-19 Vaccination Policies

The Biden administration recently announced that it will be mandating Covid-19 vaccine policies for federal contractors and federal employees, as well as for employers with over 100 employees. This announcement, along with surging Delta...

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News

Farella Braun + Martel Announces Final Court Approval of $575 Million Settlement With Sutter Health in Landmark Antitrust Class Action

Farella Braun + Martel is proud to announce that San Francisco Superior Court Judge Anne-Christine Massullo has granted final approval of the landmark $575 million antitrust class action settlement with Sutter Health, the largest...

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Publication

How to Guard Against 3 Cannabis Cyber Attack Risks

Cyber attacks are now commonplace. Ransomware attacks, in particular, have skyrocketed in frequency and size. High-profile data breaches have cost businesses in the United States millions of dollars in losses and incalculable reputational harm...

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Event

Pushing for Diversity in Philanthropy

Join Farella's Wendy Hernandez and guest speaker, Afshan Paarlberg, assistant visiting professor at Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy, for the nonprofit industry program "Pushing for Diversity in Philanthropy." A pressing question for many philanthropists...

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Publication

No Quarter: What Claims Doesn’t Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act Protect Platform Companies Against?

Depending on what you read or who you talk to, Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (47 U.S.C. § 230) (CDA) is either a tool of censorship, a shield of Big Tech that...

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