Staying current, much less ahead of the curve, with today's rapidly evolving climate change laws, regulations, policy, and litigation, can be a formidable and arduous task-one you need not navigate alone. Arnold & Porter LLP's climate change practice is fully-prepared to advise and represent diverse clients on the critical issues created by emerging climate change regimes. We currently counsel a variety of clients on how to best manage and minimize adverse impacts of new regulations on their business and other interests. Indeed, together we identify and implement mechanisms to render new climate change initiatives a "plus" for our clients. Thus, for example, our clients turn to us to counsel them on how to ensure compliance with new requirements and take advantage of new opportunities, including those in renewable energy and carbon trading and offsets.
Arnold & Porter has a proven track record of offering creative, strategic approaches and coordinated, interdisciplinary representation from attorneys across a range of areas, including: environmental; renewable energy; corporate governance; corporate transactions; enforcement counseling and defense; intellectual property; real estate; litigation; international trade; and legislative and public policy. For decades, prominent stakeholders have called upon the firm to help them navigate the most challenging problems at the intersection of law and public policy.
Our climate change practice has been deeply engaged in the climate change debate. For decades, our environmental attorneys have been leaders in the ongoing discourse. They prepared the definitive book, Global Climate Change and U.S. Law (March 2007) and often speak at bar association and law school programs on climate change. While serving in senior-level government positions, members of our climate change team were responsible for shaping or contributing to policy and legal responses to the first state climate initiatives, trade disputes involving allegations of discrimination in the US fuel economy laws, and alternative fuels programs.
We understand that the unprecedented scope of the climate change issue will continue to build and reverberate across a wide legal landscape, including not only local, state, and federal regulatory programs, but also land use and development, energy, power and transportation policy, corporate governance, international trade, corporate transactions, and regulatory, tort, and international litigation. For assistance in all these legal arenas and broad frontiers, clients call upon our experienced team for guidance and effective representation..
|We maintain a comprehensive chart that displays US climate change litigation, covering pending as well as decided cases. Those interested in receiving updates to this chart should send a note to Margaret Barry. We offer links to the Climate Legislation Resource Center and Climate Regulations Tracking Service, prepared by Columbia Law School, which is directed by senior counsel Michael Gerrard. These have links to federal legislation and relevant documents plus a database of required rulemakings and other federal agency actions.||Climate Change Litigation Chart|
We have a wealth of experience advising on climate change-related issues including:
- Regulatory Compliance and Advocacy
- Renewable Energy and Fuel Economy
- Green Energy
- Carbon Claims and Alleged "Greenwashing"
- Green Real Estate
We have represented clients on some of the most significant litigation matters relating to climate change.
- Defending a leading energy/petroleum company in a public nuisance suit filed on behalf of an Inupiat Eskimo village against energy and oil companies alleging that defendants' greenhouse gas emissions caused a loss of barrier ice that protected the village from harsh Arctic storms. Obtained dismissal in US District Court for the Northern District of California based on constitutional separation of power principles and standing; appeal pending in the Ninth Circuit.
- Representation of a leading energy/petroleum company in a tort-based suit filed by an alleged class of Mississippi homeowners against energy, coal, petroleum, and chemical company defendants alleging that defendants' greenhouse gas emissions intensified the effects of Hurricane Katrina resulting in increased property damage. Obtained dismissal in the district court based on constitutional separation of power principles and standing; reversed by the Fifth Circuit; en banc petition pending.
Regulatory Compliance and Advocacy
We provide counsel on emergent international, federal, state, and local climate change laws, including regulations pursuant to the Clean Air Act and other authorities, renewable energy standards, and fuel efficiency laws and regulations. Consisting of former senior-level government experience-including the Environmental Enforcement Section of the US Department of Justice and the Office of General Counsel of the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-our team provides you with analysis of the impact new regulation may have on your business as well as advocate your interests where necessary.
- Advised a client in connection with regulatory and risk management matters concerning the retail sale of ethanol and biodiesel blend fuels.
- Counseled an international pulp and paper company on the implications of the new regulatory landscape climate change on their business.
- Provided legal assistance, as part of the climate change team, to a FORTUNE 100 company, focusing both on compliance with federal greenhouse gas regulations, policies, and programs and understanding opportunities created by those new regulations.
- Advised a regional electricity generator and natural gas distribution company on the implications of and compliance with the new federal and state greenhouse gas regulations.
- Provided counsel to a major oil company on Clean Air Act and climate related matters, including general strategic and legal advice and representation in climate litigation.
- Counseled a major fertilizer producer, in analyzing and evaluating regulations on their industry, including participation in the greenhouse gas reporting rulemaking, compliance with that rule, and participation in EPA's development of new source review policy for greenhouse gases.
- Advised the purchaser of major automotive brands from a US manufacturer in evaluating fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions compliance as well as credit compliance.
- Provided counsel to a major US automobile company in evaluation of compliance issues under California Environmental Performance Labeling, including greenhouse gases and fuel economy disclosures.
- Counseled a major electric utility in anticipating impacts of various EPA regulatory options, including new source review policy for greenhouse gases.
- Provided legal assistance to a major automobile manufacturer with issues related to the California Greenhouse Gas rule and the EPA waiver proceeding.
- Advised a major utility in securing changes to the Waxman-Markey bill.
- Counseled several public corporations in the greenhouse gas disclosure aspects of their security filings.
- Provided legal counsel to a number of potential investors on the impacts of prospective greenhouse gas regulation on the value of the companies in which they were considering taking an ownership interest.
- Advised a client on the potential trade implications of importation into US from facilities able to sell emissions allowances under Kyoto regime.
Renewable Energy and Fuel Economy
The increased attention to climate change provides incentives to develop and invest in renewable energy technologies. We counsel companies on creating and taking advantage of renewable energy opportunities. We also assist clients address compliance with emerging regulations and incentives around renewable energy and the new fuel standards being developed in response to climate change concerns.
- Provided legal assistance to a cellulosic ethanol technology and production company in addressing issues under the renewable fuel standard promulgated pursuant to the Clean Air Act §211(o) (RFS2).
- Advised a major client in evaluating a low carbon fuel legislative proposal.
- Counseled the purchaser of major automotive brands from a US manufacturer in evaluating fuel economy and greenhouse gas emissions compliance as well as credit compliance.
- Advised a major US automobile company in evaluation of compliance issues under California Environmental Performance Labeling, including greenhouse gases and fuel economy disclosures.
- Provided counsel to a major automobile manufacturer with issues related to the California Greenhouse Gas rule and the EPA waiver proceeding.
We have significant experience in development and financing of infrastructure projects in the US and in emerging markets with a focus on energy. These projects include independent power projects using both carbon-based and renewable fuels.
- Provided legal assistance to the installation of numerous distributed generation facilities (onsite) using combined heat and power or cogeneration technologies.
- Counseled energy services companies on energy efficiency projects carried out under energy performance contracts or demand side management programs.
- Provided advice relating to solar power purchase agreements and utility-scale geothermal, hydroelectric, and solar generation projects.
- Advised the developer of a waste-to-ethanol plant in extensive permitting proceedings before federal and state regulatory agencies, and in subsequent litigation.
- Provided counsel to a wind power developer in various federal permitting proceedings.
- Counseled clients on cases under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) involving environmental aspects of wind energy developments, including obtaining invalidating local ordinances restricting wind energy development and invalidating approval of new projects that would impede wind access of existing developments, as well as obtaining favorable settlements reducing the scope of residential development based on environmental concerns.
Carbon Claims and Alleged "Greenwashing"
In tandem with our international trade practice, we provide advice on how to advertise the "green" qualities of products consistent with the Federal Trade Commission's regulations and guidance on "greenwashing."
- Counseled a consumer products manufacturer regarding marketing claims involving green, climate, carbon, and related issues.
- Helped implement environmental advertising compliance for FORTUNE 100 company.
- Provided advice to a wide range of clients on emerging regulations of California air districts on carbon emissions and trading.
Green Real Estate
With increased demand for green real estate among companies comes the increased need to comply or supply. Working with our leading real estate practice, we have experience assisting contractors and commercial management companies obtain Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) and other green certifications; analyzing state and local legislation and developing strategies and contracts for companies to comply with green building laws; obtaining tax benefits associates with renewable energy product installations; and conducting Brownfields and risk transfer transactions that lead to successful redevelopment.
- Advised Silverstein Properties in the redevelopment of the World Trade Center site in New York, including in the "green building" aspects of the project.
- Provided legal assistance to an owner of a building in Washington, DC in negotiating one or more floor leases with US Green Building Council, RTKL, and Colliers Cassidy.
- Counseled a large natural resources company in the restructure and implementation of a complex Brownfields risk transfer transaction.
- Advised the developer of a recycling paper mill in the Bronx, New York, that would have numerous green features.
- Provided legal assistance to shopping center construction companies and large-scale residential development on CEQA guidelines for analyzing green house gas impacts on development projects.