Environmental

We provide clients with comprehensive and strategic counsel and address immediate environmental issues at hand - such as Ohio and federal permitting and compliance, proposed rules and changes, and litigation concerns - while counseling clients on how the resolution of these issues will affect their overall business objectives.

Our Environmental Practice is anchored by a former Director of the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency, who bolsters our in-depth knowledge of the environmental landscape with his insights. Our team is large enough to take on big companies with large challenges, yet focused enough to be nimble and flexible in our approach to advising clients of all sizes.

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The attorneys in Calfee’s Environmental Practice have spent a combined 130 years gaining significant regulatory, business and litigation experience in this heavily-regulated industry. We balance our specialized knowledge of the industry with our acquired business acumen to provide comprehensive and strategic counsel. Our attorneys address immediate environmental issues at hand—such as Ohio and federal permitting and compliance, proposed rules and changes, and litigation concerns—while counseling clients on how the resolution of these issues will affect their overall business objectives. We are proud to have represented clients such as RPM International Inc., Union Carbide Corporation, and Chase Brass & Copper Company in their environmental matters.

Our team's core strength stems from three differentiating areas:

  • We have in-depth knowledge of the entire environmental landscape, including from the insights of a former Director of the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency.
  • We are integrated within one of Ohio’s top business and litigation law firms, as ranked annually by Chambers USA Legal Guide.
  • Our environmental team is large enough to take on big companies with big environmental challenges, yet focused enough to be nimble and flexible in our approach to advising clients of any size.

Our Environmental Practice represents publicly and privately held corporations, municipalities, public agencies, and trade associations. Our clients are engaged in a variety of businesses including metals manufacturing and finishing, waste disposal and wastewater treatment, real estate development and lending, chemical and plastics manufacturing, industrial gases, paints and coatings, and minerals and mining.

Litigation and Enforcement Proceedings

  • Environmental contractual indemnity claims
  • Citizen suits and class actions
  • Civil and criminal proceedings
  • Administrative hearings and appeals
  • Toxic torts

Hazardous and Solid Waste

  • Superfund/unregulated hazardous waste sites
  • Emergency planning and community right-to-know
  • Hazardous substance inventories
  • Solid and hazardous waste treatment and disposal
  • Underground storage tanks

Water/Wetlands/Air

  • Storm water runoff
  • Effluent treatment and discharge/NPDES/POTW
  • Groundwater investigation and remedial action
  • Drinking water
  • Wetlands identification and protection
  • Coastal protection and development
  • Air emissions identification, permitting and control
  • Noise and nuisance control and abatement

Representative Projects

The following are a sample of some of the organizations that we have represented in environmental litigation matters:

  • Large Ohio municipality in defense of Clean Water Act SSO/CSO claims brought by Ohio and the United States resulting in a Consent Decree resolving thousands of days of violations with a $60,000 civil penalty and an extended construction schedule patterned after the city’s Long Term Control Plan.
  • Closely held coatings company and its principal in a state-led felony prosecution relating to alleged hazardous waste disposal.
  • Publicly traded industrial gases manufacturer in litigation and administrative proceedings relating to a multi-party Superfund site where on-site incineration was a component of the remedy.
  • Fortune 200 chemical and plastics manufacturer in litigation and administrative proceedings relating to a multi-party Superfund site involving claims of surface water, stream sediment and wetlands contamination.
  • Subsidiary of a major chemical manufacturer in administrative and contempt proceedings brought by the State of Ohio relating to a RCRA closure and groundwater remediation.
  • Suburban municipality in Clean Water Act litigation relating to improvements to its POTW and NPDS permit compliance.
  • Publicly traded metals manufacturer in a private cost recovery action against a multinational oil company to obtain reimbursement of costs for TCE soil and groundwater contamination remediation.
  • Suburban municipality in negotiations relating to resolution of alleged violations of a Clean Water Act federal consent decree and judicial termination of the decree.
  • Container manufacturer in administrative proceedings concerning U.S. Department of Transportation hazardous materials labeling compliance.
  • Chemical recyclers’ trade association in a constitutional challenge to fees for the background investigations under Ohio’s hazardous and solid waste laws.
  • Privately held carbon products manufacturer at a Superfund site involving alleged trans-shipment and reclamation of hazardous substances.
  • Closely held paint manufacturer in state-led enforcement proceedings involving the remediation and closure of a municipal landfill.
  • Subsidiary of multinational corporation in defense of a class action involving claims of widespread personal injury and property damage arising out of an explosion and fire on a transporter’s vehicle while traveling on an interstate highway.