Overview

As one of the largest and most experienced environmental groups in the midwestern United States, we provide a full range of services, with emphasis on permitting and regulatory compliance, environmental litigation and enforcement defense, remediation, property transactions, brownfield redevelopment and other matters. The breadth and depth of our practice includes experience in highly specialized areas, including those relevant to oil and gas production in the Ohio shale resources. Through case work, prior work experience and professional associations, we have established strong working relationships with local, state and federal regulators as well as with peers and technical consultants in the environmental field. Several lawyers in our group have prior work experience with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and state attorneys general offices. Some have acted as special counsel to the Ohio EPA or chaired the environmental sections of their local and state bar associations and committees. Our practice has been recognized as a leading group in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business and by U.S. News/Best Lawyers, among others, and many of our lawyers have received recognition as leading practitioners in environmental law.

We have extensive experience with:

  • Wetlands and wastewater permitting and compliance counseling
  • State water quality certifications and other wastewater issues
  • Solid waste landfill permitting and compliance
  • Underground injection control permits
  • Mandatory and voluntary remediation programs (including releases from pipelines)
  • Environmental impact statements and proposed findings of no significant impact under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and analogous state programs, along with state and federal permitting for pipeline and other energy projects
  • Litigation (including toxic tort cases, enforcement actions, citizen suits and class action defense)
  • Administrative, licensing, adjudicatory and appellate proceedings before state and federal agencies (including the Ohio Power Siting Board) for a variety of regulated entities including utilities, landfills and hazardous waste facilities
  • Environmental due diligence and counseling on environmental aspects of real estate and corporate transactions
  • Health and safety compliance counseling and enforcement defense
Additional Information

Our group is ranked a leading environmental practice in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business and in “Best Law Firms” by U.S. News Media Group/Best Lawyers, among other authorities. In addition, individual lawyers in our group are recognized as leaders in the field in Chambers USA, Best Lawyers and International Who’s Who in Environmental Law and by The American College of Environmental Lawyers.

Our litigation work includes:

  • Civil, criminal and administrative enforcement actions, as well as permit challenges and appeals cases
  • Superfund defense and cost-recovery cases
  • Citizen suits
  • Toxic tort cases
  • Class action defense
  • Solid and hazardous waste litigation
  • Facility siting cases for a variety of regulated entities, including landfills; hazardous waste treatment, storage and disposal facilities; utilities; and chemical and manufacturing facilities
  • Treatment of environmental liabilities in bankruptcy proceedings
  • OSHA enforcement actions

Our regulatory and legislative counseling work entails:

  • Permitting and compliance issues involving air, water, toxic substances, climate change, and solid and hazardous waste
  • Investigations and cleanups under mandatory and voluntary programs
  • Brownfield redevelopment
  • OSHA compliance
  • Auditing and structuring clients’ environmental, health and safety compliance and sustainability policies and programs
  • Participating in legislative and rulemaking proceedings on behalf of clients

Our transactional work involves:

  • Mergers, dispositions and acquisitions of businesses and business assets of all sizes
  • Representing financial institutions in lender liability issues
  • Counseling public companies in SEC disclosure issues
Experience
Representative Experience
Environmental Regulatory Counseling
  • Advising on compliance, auditing, permitting, and environmental investigations/cleanups.
  • Assisting with National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System, Resource Conservation Recovery Act (RCRA) and Title V air permitting for numerous facilities in the chemical, manufacturing, pulp and paper and foundry industries.
  • Counseling on Title V, Prevention of Significant Deterioration and New Source Review permitting for coal-fired electric generating facilities.
  • Assisting in the preparation of environmental, health and safety management systems and the implementation of environmental health and safety codes and policies.
  • Assisting numerous clients in Ohio and other states with compliance with Title V permitting requirements, including applicability assessments, completing applications and negotiating terms and conditions.
  • Counseling business entities regarding permitting and compliance requirements under the Clean Air Act (CAA), Clean Water Act (CWA), RCRA, Toxic Substances Control Act and analogous state programs.
  • Representing a manufacturing company in an enforcement action for alleged solid waste disposal violations on the client’s property, which were resolved in a consent agreement.
Environmental Litigation
  • Defending citizens’ suits brought under the CAA, CWA and RCRA against such diverse entities as a municipal airport, a rubber products manufacturer and a sanitary landfill.
  • Acting as common counsel in numerous Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) cases involving groundwater, surface water and stream sediment contamination.
  • Defending and settling a federal court class action involving persistent chlorinated hydrocarbon contaminating 20 miles of a nearby stream.
  • Representing one of two defendants in White River (Indiana) fish kill case involving federal, state and class action claims seeking civil damages and penalties exceeding $50 million and federal criminal prosecution under the CWA.
  • Defending multiphase CERCLA litigation involving toluene diisocyanate contamination.
Brownfields
  • Representing clients in numerous cleanup projects under state mandatory and voluntary programs, including the Ohio Voluntary Action Program.
  • Advising numerous developers in taking advantage of the Ohio Voluntary Action Program (and associated financing/tax increment financing programs) in support of their plans to convert existing manufacturing land uses to light industrial, commercial, warehouse or residential developments.
  • Representing a company in a RCRA closure and corrective action under a consent agreement with EPA and a negotiated settlement with the former owner of the property requiring the former owner to take back the title to the property, assume responsibility for closure and corrective action, and reimburse costs.
  • Serving as partner legal adviser to an international manufacturing company in connection with the consolidation of U.S. facilities resulting in investigation and cleanup of closed facilities across the country under mandatory and voluntary programs and providing assistance on environmental aspects of sale or gifting of such properties.
Environmental-Related Transactions
  • Performing due diligence (often involving Phase I and Phase II environmental site assessments), negotiation and strategic planning with respect to environmental issues in corporate and real estate acquisitions and sales involving the leveraged buyout of a highway construction and chemical manufacturer with more than 70 facilities in 25 states.
  • Supporting property owners and lenders with environmental issues as they have worked through their strategies to develop or dispose of distressed properties.
  • Representing a lending institution on environmental issues relating to the sale of more than 500 branch offices.
  • Representing sellers, buyers and developers of environmentally impaired real estate (e.g., chemical manufacturing plants, foundries, etc.).
  • Assisting with the acquisition and disposition of chemical manufacturing, powdered metal product, metal fabricating, foundry, paper production, paint, utility, cogeneration and plastic molding facilities.
  • Handling brownfield redevelopments of a manufacturing facility converted into a transportation, logistics and warehousing complex and of a historic arcade converted into a hotel/retail complex.
  • Providing environmental due diligence and management of investigations for the construction of a sports complex and associated commercial development.