Land Use

Every business and owner or occupant of land is affected by environmental and land use laws and regulations. We provide comprehensive legal counsel to clients involved in a wide array of environmental, natural resources and land use matters. Our work includes all levels of project planning, permitting and development, regulatory compliance and enforcement counseling as well as dispute resolution and litigation.

Our Services

In addition to broad experience and legal and technical expertise in environmental and land use issues, our attorneys have trusted working relationships with regulators, key legislators, community activists, and non-governmental organizations—all of whom influence environmental and land use policy and enforcement. We also provide counsel on the following areas:

Permitting and Entitlements

We help our clients obtain the environmental and land use permits and approvals they need to develop property for commercial, industrial and residential uses. Additionally, we represent clients who seek project approvals or denials from oversight agencies throughout California.

Air and Water Quality Compliance

Our environmental attorneys counsel and represent a wide variety of clients in the full range of issues arising under federal, state and local laws regulating the quality of air and water, including counseling on climate change laws and pending regulations. We have drafted documents establishing rights and liabilities with respect to air emissions credits.

We also assist clients in obtaining the discharge permits they need to operate their businesses, and also represent private and public entities in disputes before the Regional Water Quality Control Board and the State Water Resources Control Board. We have extensive experience with Army Corps Section 404 and California section 401 certifications for projects affecting waters of the United States and reports of waste discharge for those projects that discharge waste into waters of the state.

We also advise clients on matters related to asbestos and lead contamination in buildings.

Our attorneys have trusted working relationships with regulations, key legislators, community activists, and non-governmental organizations.

Environmental Litigation

We represent project proponents and public agencies, as well as community organizations, regarding projects in administrative proceedings and litigation under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and the California Coastal Act (CCA). We also represent clients in cases involving Clean Water Act (CWA) permits, decisions and appeals.

Resource-constrained Properties

We assist property owners with resource-constrained property, the permitting of creative development plans, the establishment of mitigation banks, and finding resolutions for tough constraint issues that could significantly limit or deter the economic development of property. Our attorneys draft and negotiate the transactional documents involved in the transfer of real property to ensure that environmental responsibilities and liabilities are apportioned in accordance with the intent of the parties and that appropriate insurance protection is obtained when necessary. We also have significant experience with property contamination and brownfields matters representing public entities and private clients.

Contaminated Properties

We assist sellers and buyers of contaminated properties in sales and lease negotiations and contracts. We work with consultants and agencies to obtain certificates of closure and to manage remediation obligations.

Endangered Species and Sensitive Habitat Issues

Our land use attorneys regularly deal with the legal issues that arise whenever endangered species or their habitats are affected by land development. We have also developed and worked extensively with species and habitat plans, conservation easements, mitigation banks and community stewardship entities as well as single-project permitting for public and private clients.

Proposition 65

We regularly advise clients on the notice obligations, discharge prohibitions and other provisions of California’s Proposition 65, then represent them in enforcement actions brought under this law.