Our specialist environmental team has considerable experience in all types of environmental work, providing the full range of contentious and non-contentious expertise for clients across a variety of sectors. Our team of six partners and over 20 lawyers regularly advises Local Authorities and clients in the manufacturing, construction, agriculture and waste disposal sectors, as well as renewable energy generators and low carbon businesses.
We are members of the UK Environmental Law Association, the Environmental Industries Commission and the All-Party Parliamentary Environmental Group.
Our areas of expertise
- Contentious: We acted for the successful claimant in Blue Circle v Ministry of Defence, perhaps the leading case on environmental clean up costs. In addition to our civil work, we also advise companies in a regulatory/criminal context. We regularly advise on prosecutions brought by the Environment Agency and by Local Authorities, particularly in the most common areas of prosecution, ie under the Water Resources Act 1991, and the Environmental Protection Act 1990.
- Non-contentious: Our specialists have advised numerous businesses on the implications of environmental law. As well as having strong sector specific expertise (the waste industry, developers, water companies, environmental consultants) we are also able to advise on the environmental problems which can face all companies, such as the purchase and sale of businesses with long-tail environmental exposures, contaminated land and producer responsibility and, increasingly, regulatory and sustainability issues arising from the climate change agenda. Being a specialist insurance firm we have also played a key role in many insurers' offerings of environmental impairment and other specialist covers.
Examples of relevant work
- Instructed to defend prosecution brought by the Environment Agency regarding clean up costs following the discharge of fluorocarbons into lakes
- Successfully defended claim against a party who advised on a barrier for use in a system for the dumping of benzoates
- Regularly instructed to defend claims relating to oil tank leaks, nuisance claims and clean up notices/prosecutions by the Environment Agency
- Instructed by Local Authority in connection with investigation by the Environment Agency into fly tipping
- Instructed to advise on the coverage of claims by third parties and the Environment Agency in respect of water pollution following the collapse of a building built over a river
- Instructed to defend waste disposal company that had mistakenly spread human waste on fields around a village believing it was animal waste
- Advising an environmental services business on the tactics for securing a waste facility site from threatened trespass by environmental campaigners
- Advised a water company on the environmental planning issues affecting the construction of a waste water treatment facility on the Isle of Wight
- Advising multinational energy companies on environmental issues regarding pipelines
- Instructed by insurers to draft an environmental clean-up costs extension to their Public and Products Liability policy
- Advised a pesticide manufacturer on challenges to an attempt by DEFRA and EU bodies to ban a pesticide from being sold and marketed in the EU
- Advised numerous developers on rights/liabilities under Part IIA Environmental Protection Act 1990 when acquiring/disposing of land that may be affected by contamination
- Advised a sovereign body on its clean-up obligations under the "Precautionary Principle" following the pollution, over several of decades, of ground and groundwater
- Represented electricity generator in bringing challenges against regulator arising under the Renewables Obligation Order 2002 and strategic advice on entitlement to ROCs
- Advised renewable electricity supplier in relation to licensing issues and investigations by Ofgem
- Advising Local Authorities and property companies in relation to compliance with the Energy Performance of Buildings Regulations
- Providing strategic advice to clients on preparations for and compliance with the CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme
We also advise on the full spectrum of planning, sustainability and environmental issues. For more information, please contact the following:
Regulatory litigation - Gavin Reese (email@example.com) or Nick McMahon (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Civil claims - Stuart White (email@example.com)
Non-contentious - Steven Francis (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Planning - Karen Howard (email@example.com)
Contaminated land - Sarah Cassidy (firstname.lastname@example.org)