dcsimg Environmental Litigation

Environmental Litigation

Environmental situations affect more than our ecosystem. They alter our livelihoods, affect our economic health and — in some instances — change the course of a company’s history.

The environmental litigation team at McGuireWoods draws on our in-depth legal and industry experience and the firm’s broad technological resources to deliver strategic counsel to clients almost anywhere they do business. As members of a firm that values and is driven by relationships, we work closely with clients to understand their companies, markets and regulatory challenges, and collaborate with lawyers from throughout the firm to provide focused, issue-specific counsel.

We have extensive familiarity with Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) policies and procedures, and work closely with EPA staff to negotiate appropriate responses to investigations and enforcement action. We also have represented clients before state legislatures and environmental and natural resources agencies. Taken together, this broad experience with regulatory and legislative bodies enables us to move readily between national issues and site- or company-specific engagements.

When unforeseen events arise, we understand that immediate action is often required, not only to reduce the potential impact on the environment, but also to minimize the effects of environmental claims on the companies involved. These decisions must also be made in the context of broader regulatory requirements and in a manner that takes into account the long-term ramifications of any response under consideration. While we are fully prepared to mount an aggressive defense at trial and before federal and state regulatory agencies, we are particularly proud of those cases that do not make it to court. We also recognize the value of a positive reputation, and we work with McGuireWoods Consulting’s public relations and government relations teams to manage the publicity that often surrounds environmental complaints. We also work with these professionals to help ensure that our clients’ perspectives on important issues are heard and understood.

CONTACTS

Scott C. Oostdyk Partner T: +1 804 775 4743
Results 1-19 of 19

RESULTS DEPEND ON A VARIETY OF FACTORS UNIQUE TO EACH CASE. PRIOR RESULTS DO NOT GUARANTEE OR PREDICT A SIMILAR OUTCOME.

Representative Matter

Global science company

Representation of a global science company in defense of an environmental civil suit brought by the Sierra Club and NRDC relating to historic mercury deposits in the South River in Virginia. Attained a unique settlement involving a six year study of the mercury issues.
Representative Matter

Large energy producer

Representing a large coal-fired power plant in the defense of a class action claim by 1500 surrounding residents for particulate emission involving first-impression issues of preemption of state nuisance law.
Representative Matter

State coal organization

Represented a state coal organization in an appeal of consolidated greenhouse gas regulations impacting all of heavy industry.
Representative Matter

One of the largest producers and transporters of energy in the United States

Defense of one of the largest producers and transporters of energy in the United States in a multi-billion dollar nuisance suit alleging air and water contamination due to fly ash residue on behalf of over 450 plaintiffs.  Achieved dismissal of 10 of the 12 causes of action, as well as all of the water contamination allegations, and the medical monitoring, stigma, fear of future injury, and emotional injury damages.
Representative Matter

One of the largest producers and transporters of energy in the United States

Defense of one of the largest producers and transporters of energy in the United States in a multibillion-dollar nuisance suit alleging air and water contamination due to fly ash residue on behalf of over 450 plaintiffs.  Achieved dismissal of 10 of the 12 causes of action, as well as all of the water contamination allegations, and the medical monitoring, stigma, fear of future injury, and emotional injury damages.
Representative Matter

Leading supplier of rail-based freight transportation

Effective defense of leading supplier of rail-based freight transportation in North America in nuisance case. Resulted in summary judgment for client and dismissal of case. Upheld on appeal by United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit based on preemption. McGuireWoods has handled several nuisance cases in multiple jurisdictions for this client.
Representative Matter

Large electricity wholesaler

Represented a large electricity wholesaler in a citizen suit alleging violations of emissions standards for particulate matter and opacity.
Case Study

Richmond trial team wins nuisance and trespass case

In 2006, upland developers Boyd Corporation and Ramblewood Forrest LLC broke ground on a 175-home subdivision in Chesterfield County, Va. Despite zoning and permit conditions requiring vigilant sediment controls, the developers allowed 3 million tons of fine clay to brown up and then kill a pristine 3-acre farm pond owned by McGuireWoods' clients Ronald and Joyce Luck. They also increased storm water discharge volume to the point of imperiling the Lucks' dirt dam and emergency spillway, and destroying buffering wetlands.

Representative Matter

Waste management and environmental services company

Defense of a North American waste management, comprehensive waste, and environmental services company in a number of land use, environmental and permitting claims concerning the development of a major port for the transshipment of municipal solid waste from barges to a nearby regional landfill.
Case Study

Firm secures appeal of no penalty enforcement action for CSX

McGuireWoods recently defended the appeal of an Illinois Pollution Control Board decision refusing to issue a penalty against CSX (one of the nation's leading transportation companies, providing rail-based transportation services) for certain environmental violations. The Illinois Attorney General's Office had appealed the board's decision - made on cross motions for summary judgment - that CSX violated the Illinois Environmental Protection Act with respect to an oil spill in its East St. Louis yard.
Representative Matter

City, county and solid waste facility

Defended and obtained a favorable settlement for a solid waste authority, a city and a county in a citizens suit asserting RCRA, CERCLA and state common law claims alleging that a municipal landfill violated solid waste management statutes and regulations, and that landfill operations injured their property.
Representative Matter

World’s largest pork producer and processor

Defense of a joint state/federal criminal and civil investigation of an international food processing company for allegations related to purported failure to report air and water discharges of hazardous substances.
Representative Matter

Leading supplier of rail-based freight transportation

Represented a leading supplier of rail-based freight transportation in North America in class action alleging diesel emissions and noise.
Representative Matter

Cement company

Effective defense of cement company in nuisance class action related to fugitive and stack emissions in plaintiff-friendly jurisdiction. Defeated class certification and won summary judgment for defendant after two-week jury trial.
Representative Matter

Group of agricultural concerns

Representation of a group of agricultural concerns, challenging a county’s ban on the land application of biosolids. The Virginia Supreme Court overturned the trial court’s decision and sustained our client’s challenge striking down the local law.
Representative Matter

Leading distributor of packaging, shipping, and maintenance products

Representation of a leading distributor of packaging, shipping, and maintenance products in a putative toxic tort class action brought by hundreds of Florida residents alleging personal injuries and property damage arising from groundwater contamination and air emissions emanating from a large paper plant and its industrial landfill.
Representative Matter

Leading supplier of rail-based freight transportation in North America

Representation of a leading supplier of rail-based freight transportation in North America in a cost recovery action by auto dealer alleging environmental response costs arising from development of property on site of former industrial wastewater lagoon against alleged prior owner and operator of lagoon. Suit brought under Florida environmental statute and common law theories (nuisance, trespass, negligence). Extrememly favorable settlement.
Representative Matter

World’s largest pork producer and processor

Defense of leading pork producer and processor in numerous mass tort, class action, and environmental citizen suits across the country relating to allegations of personal injury, property damage, and environmental degradation arising from the discharge of waste from the company’s hog farming operations.
Results 1-19 of 19
Results 1-25 of 36
Show All
Donald D Anderson Donald D. Anderson
Partner
Bank of America Tower
50 North Laura Street
Suite 3300
Jacksonville, FL 32202-3661

T: +1 904 798 3230
F: +1 904 798 3273
vCard
Mark E Anderson Mark E. Anderson
Partner
434 Fayetteville Street
Suite 2600
Raleigh, NC 27601

1345 Avenue of the Americas
7th Floor
New York, NY 10105-0106

T: +1 919 755 6678
F: +1 919 755 6581
vCard
Richard C Beaulieu Richard C. Beaulieu
Associate
One James Center
901 East Cary Street
Richmond, VA 23219-4030

T: +1 804 775 1138
F: +1 804 225 5402
vCard
Leo J M Boyd Leo J. M. Boyd
Counsel
One James Center
901 East Cary Street
Richmond, VA 23219-4030

T: +1 804 775 1066
F: +1 804 698 2025
vCard
Stephen D Busch Stephen D. Busch
Partner
One James Center
901 East Cary Street
Richmond, VA 23219-4030

T: +1 804 775 4378
F: +1 804 698 2024
vCard
Neal J Cabral Neal J. Cabral
Senior Counsel
2001 K Street N.W.
Suite 400
Washington, DC 20006-1040

T: +1 202 857 1727
F: +1 202 828 2968
vCard
Clem Carter Clement D. Carter
Counsel
One James Center
901 East Cary Street
Richmond, VA 23219-4030

T: +1 804 775 4757
F: +1 804 698 2069
vCard
Tennille J Checkovich Tennille J. Checkovich
Partner
One James Center
901 East Cary Street
Richmond, VA 23219-4030

T: +1 804 775 4758
F: +1 804 440 7770
vCard
Lisa Crabtree Lisa R. Crabtree
Associate
One James Center
901 East Cary Street
Richmond, VA 23219-4030

T: +1 804 775 1327
F: +1 804 698 2222
vCard
David Evans David E. Evans
Counsel
One James Center
901 East Cary Street
Richmond, VA 23219-4030

T: +1 804 775 4317
F: +1 804 698 2049
vCard
Matthew D Fender Matthew D. Fender
Associate
One James Center
901 East Cary Street
Richmond, VA 23219-4030

T: +1 804 775 1076
F: +1 804 698 2209
vCard
Ryan D Frei Ryan D. Frei
Associate
One James Center
901 East Cary Street
Richmond, VA 23219-4030

T: +1 804 775 1134
F: +1 804 698 2168
vCard
Joy C Fuhr Joy C. Fuhr
Partner
One James Center
901 East Cary Street
Richmond, VA 23219-4030

T: +1 804 775 4341
F: +1 804 698 2056
vCard
Philip Goldstein Philip Goldstein
Partner
1345 Avenue of the Americas
7th Floor
New York, NY 10105-0106

T: +1 212 548 7012
F: +1 212 715 2315
vCard
Jonathan P Harmon Jonathan P. Harmon
Partner
One James Center
901 East Cary Street
Richmond, VA 23219-4030

T: +1 804 775 4712
F: +1 804 698 2073
vCard
Sara F Holladay-Tobias Sara F. Holladay-Tobias
Associate
Bank of America Tower
50 North Laura Street
Suite 3300
Jacksonville, FL 32202-3661

T: +1 904 798 2662
F: +1 904 360 6317
vCard
Sidney Kanazawa Sidney Kanazawa
Partner
1800 Century Park East
8th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90067-1501

T: +1 310 315 8238
F: +1 310 315 8210
vCard
Genevieve MacSteel Genevieve MacSteel
Partner
1345 Avenue of the Americas
7th Floor
New York, NY 10105-0106

T: +1 212 548 7018
F: +1 212 715 2303
vCard
Leonard J Marsico Leonard J. Marsico
Partner
EQT Plaza
625 Liberty Avenue
23rd Floor
Pittsburgh, PA 15222-3142

2001 K Street N.W.
Suite 400
Washington, DC 20006-1040

T: +1 412 667 7987
F: +1 412 667 7956
vCard

T:+1 202 857 2412
F: +1 412 667 7956

Eugene E Mathews III Eugene E. Mathews III
Partner
One James Center
901 East Cary Street
Richmond, VA 23219-4030

2001 K Street N.W.
Suite 400
Washington, DC 20006-1040

T: +1 804 775 1313
F: +1 804 698 2108
vCard
Christiaan A Mazza Christiaan A. Mazza
Associate
434 Fayetteville Street
Suite 2600
Raleigh, NC 27601

T: +1 919 755 6694
F: +1 919 755 6597
vCard
Thomas W Murrell III Thomas W. Murrell III
Counsel
201 North Tryon Street
Suite 3000
Charlotte, NC 28202-2146

T: +1 704 343 2205
F: +1 704 444 8758
vCard
Scott C Oostdyk Scott C. Oostdyk
Partner
One James Center
901 East Cary Street
Richmond, VA 23219-4030

T: +1 804 775 4743
F: +1 804 698 2133
vCard
Dana P Palmer Dana P. Palmer
Senior Counsel
1800 Century Park East
8th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90067-1501

T: +1 310 956 3445
F: +1 310 956 3121
vCard
David P Pusateri David P. Pusateri
Partner
EQT Plaza
625 Liberty Avenue
23rd Floor
Pittsburgh, PA 15222-3142

T: +1 412 667 7924
F: +1 412 667 7963
vCard
Results 1-4 of 4
Speaking Engagement

Groundwater Contamination Litigation: Proving and Defending Against Liability

Demonstrating Nexus, Causation and Injury to Recover Cleanup Costs and Other Damages

October 10, 2013
Strafford Publications Webinar
Speaking Engagement

15th National Advanced Forum on Asbestos Claims & Litigation

American Conference Institute

October 7-8, 2013
New York, NY
Speaking Engagement

Fracking Litigation and Daubert Challenges

Defending Against and Asserting Challenges to Expert Witness Evidence

May 21, 2013
Strafford Publications Webinar
Speaking Engagement

Groundwater Contamination Litigation: Proving and Defending Against Liability

Demonstrating Nexus, Causation and Injury to Recover Cleanup Costs and Other Damages

October 4, 2012
Webinar
Results 1-4 of 4
Results 1-4 of 4
Article

The Obsolescence of Environmental Common Law

40 Ecology Law Currents 1
2013
Article

The death of environmental common law?

The National Law Journal
October 15, 2012
Results 1-4 of 4