Lauren Daniel is an environmental litigator handling a wide range of disputes across the Country. She represents clients in some of the largest high-profile environmental matters in recent history and has experience litigating under all the major federal environmental statutes, with particular focus on federal and state cleanup laws, including the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), the Oil Pollution Act (OPA), and the Clean Water Act (CWA). She is particularly adept at navigating multi-pronged risk related to environmental issues, including in multi-jurisdictional disputes, mass torts, and cases with inter-related regulatory, litigation, and public relations components. She takes particular pride in mastering, digesting, and simplifying for decision-makers the knotty scientific issues that underpin many environmental disputes.
Lauren’s deepest expertise relates to natural resource damages (NRD) litigation and cost recovery and contribution actions under both federal and state environmental statutes. She is a principal author of "Natural Resource Damages: A Guide to Litigating and Resolving NRD Cases," (ABA, 2019) and has spoken and written extensively in this space. She has also previously served as Co-Chair of the American Bar Association's Superfund and Natural Resource Damages Litigation Committee.
Lauren also has an active pro bono practice. She has successfully assisted asylum seekers and undocumented immigrants with immigration matters, obtained a favorable settlement for an undocumented victim of police violence, and obtained relief for mentally ill prisoners subject to unconstitutional treatment in the Pennsylvania prison system.
- BP in environmental matters relating to the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Lauren served as a member of BP’s trial team, defending the Company in the largest Clean Water Act civil penalties trial on record. She was also a member of the legal team that oversaw the natural resource damages investigation, negotiated early restoration projects, and negotiated resolution of the government’s NRD and CWA claims. In addition, Lauren mediated and resolved numerous high-value individual economic damages claims. Lauren continues to advise BP in remaining litigation related to the incident.
- Honeywell in Steward et. al. v. Honeywell and related cases. This complex litigation relates to alleged radioactive emissions from a uranium conversion facility that allegedly resulted in property damages and health effects within the local community. The actions include a putative property damages class action, multiple personal injury and wrongful death actions, and a suit brought by local government entities.
- Conservancy of Southwest Florida as lead trial counsel, in a matter seeking to enforce local land use requirements associated with a large proposed development in Collier County, Florida within habitat critical to the endangered Florida panther. The unsuccessful trial verdict was appealed and overturned. The matter was ultimately resolved in a favorable settlement.
- Multiple corporations in litigations related to alleged historic disposal of perfluorinated chemicals (PFAS) and other "emerging contaminants," including defense against personal injury, product liability, and public nuisance claims arising out of perfluorinated chemical contamination in groundwater. This experience includes:
- Warner-Lambert in successfully defending toxic tort litigation related to PFAS chemicals in drinking water allegedly emanating from a former pharmaceutical manufacturing facility.
- CSX Transportation related to remediation of the Anacostia River Superfund Site, a complex sediment remediation project involving multiple potentially responsible parties including state and federal government entities.
- Wolverine World Wide Inc. in three putative class action lawsuits seeking property damage and medical monitoring and approximately 260 personal injury suits related to PFAS chemicals and drinking water in Western Michigan.
- Honeywell International relating to its Syracuse portfolio, including Onondaga Lake, one of the largest lake Superfund sites in the United States. The portfolio includes the successful defense of a lawsuit brought by a community group challenging methods employed in the remediation of Onondaga Lake, the settlement of NRD claims related to the site, the settlement of EPA cost recovery claims, oversight of remedy implementation, and negotiation and settlement of dozens of contribution and cost recovery claims, including claims against the United States for WWII contributions to the lake contamination.
- Several Fortune 500 companies in connection with environmental risk assessment, remediation of contaminated sites, real estate transactions, and environmental permitting matters. In particular, Lauren has represented clients in investigation, remediation, and/or allocation at more than two dozen contaminated sites, including litigating allocation of cleanup costs at a number of sites across the U.S.
- J.D., Columbia Law School, 2012, Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar
- B.A., Claremont McKenna College, 2008, cum laude
- District of Columbia
- New York
- U.S. District Court, District of Columbia
- U.S. District Court, Northern District of New York
- U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit
- Former Co-Chair, American Bar Association Committee on Superfund and Natural Resource Damages Litigation
- Former President, Columbia Law School Environmental Law Society