Environmental Law

Environmental law is an ever-growing and complex legal area. Many individuals and businesses, large and small, must know about and comply with this area of law. However, it can be unclear because it is a relatively new and developing area of law. The Dohrwardt Law Firm can help you understand these laws. 

Here, we answer some initial questions our clients often have when seeking legal representation for or on environmental compliance, regulation, and litigation. Contact the Dohrwardt Law Firm to learn more about the firm's environmental and energy regulatory and compliance legal services.

Do I Need an Environmental Lawyer?

The first question is whether a client needs an environmental lawyer. The answer depends on the individual or the business and their issues. These issues can be related to anything relevant to:

  • Environmental laws, regulations, or rules
  • Violations of or challenges to environmental laws and regulations
  • Contracts related to environmental work
  • Health and safety matters
  • Manufacture of products
  • Construction and permitting
  • And more

If any of the above apply, you may need an environmental lawyer to help you with the issues and provide representation as required. 

What Are the Most Important Environmental Law Topics for Businesses?

If you are a business, certain areas of environmental law may apply to you in unique ways. The most important environmental law topic is the one related to your business or personal matter. Here are prominent environmental law topics that companies may be required to address or may encounter. 

  • Clean air
  • Indoor air quality
  • Clean water
  • Toxic substances
  • Greenhouse gas 
  • Climate change 
  • Energy supply
  • Occupational safety and health (OSHA) 
  • Site Remediation
  • Siting, land use, and natural resources
  • Solid and hazardous waste management
  • Superfund and SARA

Not all of the above will apply to each business. Also, not all topics are listed above for you. If you have questions, please consult an environmental lawyer

What are Important Environmental Laws?

The laws related to the environment are extensive, and most are regulated and enforced by agencies like the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Federal laws include but are not limited to the following vital laws:

  • Clean Air Act (CAA), 42 U.S.C.§7401, et seq. The CAA was designed to "protect and enhance the quality of the Nation's air resources" and to fight air pollution. 
  • Clean Water Act (CWA), 33 U.S.C. §1251, et seq. The CWA's "objective … is to restore and maintain the chemical, physical, and biological integrity of the Nation's waters" and fight water pollution. 
  • Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), 42 U.S.C. §9601, et seq. CERCLA, also known as Superfund, placed a tax on certain businesses involved with hazardous materials – the tax funds clean-up efforts of hazardous disposal sites when those businesses no longer exist. 
  • Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), 15 U.S.C. §2601 et seq. The TSCA requires reporting, record-keeping, and testing for toxic substances and restricts certain chemicals or mixtures. 
  • Endangered Species Act (ESA), 16 U.S.C. §1531. The ESA governs the conservation of fauna in the United States. 
  • Marine Protection, Research and Sanctuaries Act (MPRSA), 33 U.S.C. §1401. The MPRSA regulates the “dumping of all types of materials into ocean waters" and provides a framework for regulation and enforcement.
  • National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), 42 U.S.C. §4321, et seq. NEPA was passed to establish a national policy to protect human welfare and the environment; it resulted in the creation of the Environmental Protection Agency.
  • Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), 42 U.S.C. §6901, et seq. RCRA regulated solid waste.

Each state may also have specific environmental laws that regulate state-wide and local jurisdictions. Because ecological laws are layered and complex, seeking the advice and guidance of an environmental attorney is essential.

Contact the Dohrwardt Law Firm

The Dohrwardt Law Firm advises clients concerning the environment in many facets of the law and can help you understand federal and state laws and how to comply with their rules. Contact the Dohrwardt Law Firm to hear how the firm can help your business.

Bray Dohrwardt is Responsible For the Content of this website

Bray Dohrwardt is licensed to practice law in Minnesota and Texas. Please contact the Dohrwardt Law Firm to discuss how the firm can help you get business done.