ENVIRONMENTAL LAW

We assist clients in all phases of wastewater permitting, storm water regulation, and Clean Water Act Section 404 permitting. We help clients obtain permits for municipal, industrial, and hazardous waste disposal and beneficial reuse by land application, including Municipal Solid Waste transfer stations, compost, mulching and recycling facilities, quarries, sludge and septage sites and confined animal feeding operations. We have experience in air quality law and its application, including air emissions permitting of facilities and equipment, enforcement, and allowance trading. We also advise and assist governmental and private-sector clients on matters related to the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the federal Endangered Species Act (ESA), the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA or Superfund) and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). We represent clients dealing with the United States Fish & Wildlife Service (USFWS), U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (COE), and other federal agencies on issues related to ESA and NEPA compliance.

 

We help clients prepare and file wastewater permit applications with the TCEQ, including requests for site-specific standards and variances from the water quality standards. We also represent clients before the State Office of Administrative Hearings (SOAH) and TCEQ in administrative litigation concerning the issuance of permits. We represent public and private entities before the TCEQ and EPA on issues relating to storm water regulations and permitting, including municipal separate storm water system permits, construction storm water permits, and industrial storm water permits. We prepare non-point source pollution regulations on behalf of local government clients. We also represent entities commenting on storm water and other non-point source regulations proposed by the TCEQ and EPA.

 

We assist clients in obtaining Clean Water Act Section 404 permits from the COE for dredge-and-fill activities, and guide clients through the Clean Water Act Section 401 state certification process.

 

We represent clients facing enforcement for alleged environmental violations before the TCEQ, PUC and EPA, both in negotiating with the agencies to try to lower or eliminate monetary fines or other sanctions and in enforcement hearings before those agencies. We also assist clients in developing and negotiating supplemental environmental projects (SEPs), which may sometimes be implemented in lieu of paying all or a portion of a penalty.

 

We also assist clients in evaluating ESA issues related to the construction of major facilities. For example, we have advised clients regarding ESA issues related to the construction of subdivisions in sensitive habitat areas. We advise clients on matters involving interagency consultation under Section 7.