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Environmental

Thompson & Knight attorneys have represented clients in environmental legal issues for more than 50 years. Given the Firm’s long-standing representation of clients in the energy sector, our attorneys have represented clients in the upstream, midstream, and downstream sectors regarding all areas of environmental work.

Overview

Thompson & Knight attorneys have represented clients in environmental legal issues for more than 50 years. Given the Firm’s long-standing representation of clients in the energy sector, our attorneys have represented clients in the upstream, midstream, and downstream sectors regarding all areas of environmental work.

The Firm is “well respected for its deep environmental expertise.” – Chambers USA 2019

The Firm’s counseling experience includes the representation of clients in permitting, auditing, due diligence, environmental compliance management, and financial disclosure. Our transactional experience includes the representation of parties in mergers and acquisitions; oil and gas deals; and purchase and sales, lending, and development in real estate. We are also vigorous advocates for our clients in legislative initiatives and in the defense of any government enforcement actions, statutory-based lawsuits, contractual claims, or environmental tort suits.

Our long history and resulting credibility and reputation with opponents and agencies enables us to aggressively pursue and achieve creative, practical solutions on behalf of our clients. Through our diverse backgrounds and breadth of experience and expertise, we help clients spot issues in all areas of environmental law and devise appropriate plans of action.

Ranked among the top firms in the nation for Environmental Law in U.S. News - Best Lawyers® “Best Law Firms” 2019

50

More than 50 years of experience representing clients in environmental legal issues

Experience

  • Assisted an E&P company’s in-house counsel in conducting internal investigations related to alleged violations of the Endangered Species Act and defended the company in threatened criminal prosecution under that statute
  • Conducted environmental, health, and safety due diligence and advised a foreign oil company in the acquisition of a major interest in several petroleum refineries in the United States, including the issues involved in major changes to and increased production of the refinery
  • Assisted Petrohawk Energy Corporation on water rights issues related to fracking operations in Louisiana, including advice on dealing with recently adopted legislative restrictions and negotiations with the state’s attorney general regarding compliance with those restrictions
  • Defended a refinery in a threatened civil enforcement action by Harris County, Texas, alleging violations of Texas air regulations
  • Assisted an E&P company in obtaining after-the-fact permits for fills of wetlands and waters subject to jurisdiction under the Federal Clean Water Act
  • Defended a major oil company when several hundred persons living near a major Houston area Superfund site sued for personal injury and property damage
  • Designed and implemented due diligence on the acquisition of underground salt formation storage facilities for the storage of petroleum hydrocarbons
  • Represented an E&P company in a dispute with a landowner who alleged our client destroyed the habitat of endangered species, including an owl, ocelot, and migratory birds; negotiated a mitigation plan with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to significantly reduce any adverse impact on habitat, and achieved a favorable settlement for the client
  • Assisted an E&P company’s in-house counsel in conducting internal investigations related to alleged violations of the Endangered Species Act and defended the company in threatened criminal prosecution under that statute
  • Designed and implemented environmental due diligence for the proposed acquisition of oil and gas exploration and production operations and properties by a foreign investor
  • Defended a refinery in a threatened civil enforcement action by Harris County, Texas, alleging violations of Texas air regulations
  • Defended a joint venture of two global petroleum companies in four lawsuits (including three class actions) alleging property damage and personal injury from a pipeline break that spilled gasoline into a creek that feeds a major water source of the City of Dallas
  • Advised a client regarding permitting of oil and gas operations using Permits by Rule and Standard Permits for air emissions
  • Designed and implemented environmental due diligence of all aspects of operations of a natural gas company, from the well head through the processing plants and pipelines to the customers
  • Advised an oil company with respect to expanding the production of an oil refinery
  • Defended a major oil company in litigation alleging property damage and personal injury due to releases from pipeline operations
  • Defended a major oil company against threatened litigation under the Comprehensive Environmental Response Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) and Resource Conservation Recovery Act (RCRA)
  • Defended a major oil company in negotiating a settlement with the state environmental agency regarding the investigation and remediation of soil and groundwater contamination from an historic refinery operation
  • Advised a multinational client on the environmental risks and liability associated with operator and lease interests in deepwater offshore facilities
  • Developed and implemented permitting strategies for a major petrochemical company, including air permitting, water discharge permitting, product storage well permitting, and solid waste permitting