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Contaminated Sites & Remediation

Experience Highlights

  • Lead negotiator for a federal-state CERCLA consent decree in EPA Region 2 for remediation of dioxin and other chemicals; an Administrative Order on Consent for a remedial investigation and feasibility study of six miles of contaminated sediments in a northeastern river; an additional Administrative Order on Consent for RI/FS on a Bay; an Administrative Order on Consent for an early Removal Action; an Administrative Order on Consent for a CSO/SSO study; Cooperative Natural Resource Damage Assessment and Funding Agreements and response to a Unilateral Administrative Order

  • Defended a Fortune 50 client in a CERCLA private cost recovery action involving seven sites in seven states and two parties with a potential liability exceeding $200 million, by developing novel theories of economic benefit and culpability for the contamination; resolved on highly favorable terms involving a pay-out of eight cents on the dollar despite the client’s ownership of many of the sites for as long as 75 years

  • Obtained summary judgment in defendant’s favor in a CERCLA cost recovery action involving more than $150 million in alleged liability 

  • Played a leading role in a trial and appellate team that overturned a lower court decision holding a client liable for 20 percent of a $36 million site in a reported decision

  • Acted as trial and appellate counsel for a large chemical company in a federal Superfund cost recovery action in the Eastern District of Texas; the matter was settled on terms favorable for our client while the appeal was pending 

  • Negotiated a global settlement of CERCLA liability with the government and with PRPs as a consequence of claims that a client waste cleanup contractor mishandled the site’s clean up. Also coordinated the settlement with the settlement of the client contractor’s criminal liability, and proposed suspension and debarment

  • Defended a pipeline company in a multimedia enforcement action involving more than a thousand facilities.; established the frame work which led to a resolution of the action that provided for a phased cleanup schedule of the facilities and payment of a fine significantly less than EPA originally demanded

  • Represented a major U.S. crude oil gathering, transportation, and pipeline company in the defense of a property contamination lawsuit where the plaintiff’s alleged $40 million damage claims were settled for less than 1 percent of the amount initially claimed

  • Represented a spinoff company in a dispute involving responsibility for historic environmental liability at 20 plant sites, and resolved short of litigation through the use of creative insurance vehicles and cashing out liability

  • Represented a client in a mediation process with the United States that resulted in a settlement where the federal government agreed to accept a greater than 50% share of the costs to clean up historic mining sites in the Southwestern U.S in light of potential CERCLA claims that could have been asserted by the client

  • Represented the first-ever prospective purchaser to purchase a National Priorities List site pursuant to an agreement to remediate it in accordance with Superfund protocols under EPA oversight; the cleanup order negotiated in this case resolved difficult liability issues associated with the future redevelopment of the site and has been touted by EPA as a model for future CERCLA cleanups undertaken by private-party investors