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Environmental

Experience

Represented numerous clients in claims regarding asbestos exposure, including U.S. Gypsum, Pneumo Abex, Monsanto, Engelhard, Pfizer, Bayer, Bridgestone/Firestone, Hill Brothers, Uniroyal Goodrich, Laurel Machine & Foundry, Standard Roofing Company, Riley Stuart Company, J.K. Johnson Mechanical Contractors, Neles-Jamesbury, Oilfield Service & Supply Company, TRECO, and Irex.
Represented 3M Company in multidistrict litigation in federal district court in asbestos, silica, coal workers’ pneumoconiosis, and benzene litigation brought by plaintiffs who used 3M’s respiratory protection products. Cases include 3M Co. v. Johnson, in which the Mississippi Supreme Court reversed a $150 million verdict for six asbestos plaintiffs and rendered a verdict in 3M’s favor. The court held that that the plaintiffs were improperly joined for trial and that 3M was entitled to judgment notwithstanding the verdict.
Represented Caterpillar Inc. in welding fume product liability claims brought by thousands of Mississippi plaintiffs. Successfully defended against plaintiffs’ novel theories of civil accomplice liability, resulting in voluntary dismissal of all claims against Caterpillar.
Successfully defended lawsuit seeking to certify a class action calling for medical monitoring of workplace exposure to beryllium. Won summary judgment in trial court, and subsequently the Mississippi Supreme Court, in a case of first impression, held that no such cause of action existed where plaintiffs have suffered no injury and are only claiming fear of future injury.
Successfully defended Shell Oil Company and Ashland Oil in a six-week jury trial involving claims of exposure to hexane, xylene, methylethylketone, and several other chemicals.
Represented Goodyear Tire and Rubber in a claim involving carbon black waste from a manufacturing process that picked up toxic volatiles from the air and allegedly contaminated the land around a significant landfill next to private property.
Represented paint manufacturer in multiplaintiff action for alleged personal injuries resulting from air emissions.
Represented Chevron, BP Exploration, and Amoco Oil Company in a putative nationwide class action in the U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama involving underground storage tank litigation. Obtained summary judgment on conspiracy count, and remainder of case was voluntarily dismissed.
Represented Georgia-Pacific Corporation and subsidiaries including Leaf River Forest Products in numerous property damage and personal injury cases including Prescott v. Leaf River Forest Products, Inc. and Herrington v. Leaf River Forest Products, Inc. Summary judgment was affirmed for our clients in dioxin contamination cases brought by residents against pulp mill owners.
Successfully defended Russell Corporation before the Supreme Court of Alabama in a lawsuit alleging environmental contamination of a local lake.
Regularly represent owners, operators, and generators at both single-party and multi-party sites regarding Superfund and site cleanup. BABC attorneys have represented PRP groups, individual PRPs, and multiple PRPs presenting common issues, such as de minimis parties, and site remediation companies hired for site cleanup. Sites include:
  • Interstate Lead Company Superfund Site in Leeds, Alabama
  • Constitution Road Drum Site in Atlanta, Georgia
  • Gulf Nuclear Superfund Sites in Texas
  • Biological Processors of Alabama, Inc.
  • Organic Chemicals Inc. in Michigan
  • Miami International Airport
  • Alternative Energy Services in Augusta, Georgia
  • North Birmingham Superfund Site
  • Chemetco Superfund Site in Illinois
Defended indemnification action relating to tire plant in Vicksburg, MS, for groundwater contamination.
Represented convenience store operator in sale of operations including 100+ properties and registered underground storage tanks.
Assisted domestic manufacturing client in complying with RoHS Directive and the WEEE Directive in connection with international product shipments.
Represented former President of the Construction Products Division of W. R. Grace who, with seven other defendants, was indicted with conspiracy to defraud the United States and violate the Clean Air Act. After we filed our Motion for Judgment of Acquittal, the prosecution concluded that there was insufficient evidence against the client for the case to go to the jury. On the government’s motion, a dismissal of the indictment with prejudice was granted.
Assisted client in the agricultural industry with acquisition of a business which potentially involved significant environmental risks (chemicals). Participated in environmental portion of due diligence exercise, and prepared provisions concerning environmental issues for inclusion in the definitive purchase agreement
Represented the purchaser of oil and gas rights in a suit in which the landowner failed to transfer good title and alleged negligence on the part of our client. Obtained a judgment following trial for return of the entirety of the client’s funds, with interest.
Represented building owner in appeal of ad valorem taxes assumed upon commercial property. Following a two-day trial, panel of appraisers reduced the value of the property at issue by over $10,000,000, resulting in significant tax liability savings for our client.
Represented a family of companies in a lawsuit which called into question the ownership of nearly the entirety of their strip-mineable coal and alleged over $400 million in compensatory damages. When tried to a jury, the plaintiff was awarded $10, and coal ownership was restored to our client. Obtained affirmance of the trial court’s favorable rulings and judgment, but reversal of the trial court’s judgment dismissing our client’s counterclaims. Drummond Co., Inc. v. Walter Indus., Inc.,962 So. 2d 753 (Ala.2006).
Represented a coal mining company in its appeal of an adverse zoning decision, obtaining reversal of the zoning body’s decision denying our client the ability to surface mine over $18 million in coal. Following trial, the court granted our client a zoning variance providing for the desired mining.
Assisted companies seeking to obtain approval to participate in Mississippi Brownfields and economic incentive programs, evaluating program benefits and coordinating activities with state agencies and local economic development organizations to identify available opportunities for new and/or expanding businesses in Mississippi
Class action claim involving allegations of fraud and negligence associated with radar detector's accuracy and effectiveness
Completed due diligence and related All Appropriate Inquiry reviews for innocent landowners and prospective purchasers for liability protection purposes
Served as Environmental Justice Counsel in a matter involving a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers flood control project
Advised on environmental issues associated with multiple acquisitions including representations and warranties, purchase agreements, indemnification agreements, and related matters
Insurance coverage issue associated with a licensing agreement and the purchase and marketing of catfish; underlying action involving claims associated with loss of fish at a catfish farm
Provided opinion letter on potential environmental liability associated with property acquisition.
Negotiated settlement of enforcement matter brought by the Miss. Dep’t of Environmental Quality against a solid waste permit holder
Assisted developers and manufacturers in obtaining construction and operating permits, and advised on compliance issues associated with permits
Addressed penalties associated with water discharge violations from a tire manufacturing plant
Negotiated multi-million dollar settlement for release of inland oil spill and assisted in negotiating and drafting restoration plan
Consideration of allegations brought under the False Claims Act
Successfully defended commercial developer of multi-million dollar project against allegations of improper wetlands assessment filed with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Citizen suit under the Clean Water Act.
Challenge to denial of building permit to construct construction and demolition landfill.
Represented remediation contractor and engineer in action alleging groundwater remediation caused additional or increased groundwater contamination of plaintiffs’ properties, including vapor intrusion.
Real estate seller brought specific performance action against purchaser for failure to perform certain obligations under the contract, including compliance with state environmental regulations. Obtained rescission of the contract and a $1,000,000.00 judgment against the company and the individual owners following summary judgment.
Obtained a one million dollar verdict in a breach of contract environmental dispute between two companies in Alabama.
Case of first impression in Alabama Supreme Court holding no cause of action for fear of future heart valve failure.
Obtained summary judgment on claims of thousands of individuals alleging exposure to volatile organic chemicals from a former large manufacturing plant in Alabama.
We won summary judgment for the defendants in a series of cases where plaintiffs claimed that a pulp and paper mill had discharged dioxins into the river system of South Mississippi, and successfully protected those judgments on appeal to the Mississippi Supreme Court.
Successful negotiations and settlement of a claim involving lead and acid damage to a manufacturing plant and real property in Alabama.
Obtained summary judgment for an international chemical company on benzene exposure claims in Alabama.
Chemical Nuisance Litigation: Successfully resolved an environmental mass action involving a paint manufacturer's emissions.
Class Action Fairness Act removal where owners of real property brought action in state court against various businesses alleging trespass to person and realty, negligent, wanton, or intentional injury, nuisance, and outrageous conduct.
County Commission filed administrative challenge to re-issuance of landfill permit. We advised permittee that intervened in matter and attempted to support ADEM's decision to renew permit.
Benzene Litigation for paint manufacturer.
Property owners adjacent to Etowah County landfill sued Goodyear and others alleging carbon black disposed of in landfill had trespassed on their property and caused health problems. Case tried to a jury against Goodyear alone and defendant's verdict obtained.
Represented client as intervenor in challenge to issuance of NPDES permit by ADEM.
Obtained summary judgment on calcium carbonate claim relating to concrete and wrongful death associated with same.
Benzene Litigation for paint manufacturer.
Arbitration of dispute involving contracts compressed natural gas vehicles.
Represented client in connection with environmental criminal case that was tried to verdict in federal district court in Alabama. Following conviction, worked on appeal to Eleventh Circuit that resulted in complete reversal of convictions. Matter was ultimately settled.
Represented the operator and manager of a municipal regional airport as lead counsel in a dispute arising between it and the county that had granted the operator its lease rights. Obtained a Temporary Restraining Order and Preliminary Injunction prior to settling the case on favorable terms.
We obtained and oversaw an emergency receivership of a residential condominium and commercial real estate on an approximately $30 million loan.
Assisted pharmaceutical client in responding to investigation relating to alleged violations of state indirect discharge permit.
Advised home builders and developers on claims involving Chinese Drywall claims.
Advised client regarding historical asbestos contamination from operations of prior owner.
Asbestos litigation for parts supplier.
Represented numerous clients for over 10 years in asbestos litigation in Alabama and in the Multi-District Litigation in the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.
Assisted owner of property in entering State voluntary cleanup program and in completing remediation at site, which involved VOCs and Beryllium contamination.
Property owners brought suit against the oil and gas leaseholders and operators for monetary and injunctive relief for alleged violations of state environmental laws relating to disposal of produced water from oil and gas wells. The Plaintiffs' asserted damages in the amount of $450,000,000 or more.
Assisted client in lobbying EPA, in conjunction with the Portland Cement Association, for changes to proposed air regulations.
Closed and moved cemetery through Alabama legal process in order to develop property for mining.
Enforcement action by Miami Dade County regarding contamination at airport.
Assisted pharmaceutical client in responding to investigation relating to air violations, and renewal of SMOP.
Defended multiple lawsuits regarding alleged coal dust contamination from coal processing plant in state and federal courts, including class action.  Obtained dismissals of federal court action and class action. 
Sold former quarry to St. Clair County, Alabama, water authority.
Investigated allegations of historic, illegal burial of waste-containing drums.
Defending publicly traded company in multi-million dollar environmental litigation against water district in a lawsuit involving a superfund site with claims raised pursuant to the Comprehensive Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 (“CERCLA”), Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (“RCRA”), and Safe Drinking Water Act (“SDWA”), as well as state law.
Assisted client in responding to investigation of compliance with air regulations (PSD, NSR).
Assisted client in responding to federal clean water act, CERCLA, and EPCRA enforcement for sodium hypochlorite release.
Assisted client with EPA enforcement regarding PCBs and alleged violations of Toxic Substances Control Act.
Assisted client in responding to and settling EPA FIFRA NOV relating to boat paint product.
Negotiated settlement of an environmental dispute involving volatile organic chemicals and other environmental exposure issues at a very large industrial plant in Alabama; following settlement, worked on the closing transaction for the settlement involving an exchange of property and closure of the plant with ADEM.
Designed and conducted corporate whistleblower investigation.
Assisted client in voluntary cleanup program for purchase of site in Georgia.
Represented client in TSCA Form R issue with EPA.
AAA Arbitration regarding indemnification agreement. Represented purchaser of oil refining assets seeking indemnification from seller for costs incurred resulting from EPA Clean Air Act investigation of facility. Case involved several esoteric Clean Air Act regulations relating to refinery operations.
Involved in representation of two defendants in the largest oil spill in the history of the United States.
Assisted client in responding to ADEM investigation under state and federal clean water laws relating to sodium hypochlorite release, and negotiated consent order and supplemental environmental projects.
Assisted concrete batch plant operator at multiple sites in multiple state investigations of stormwater and process water issues.
Assisted major retailer with claims in Alabama.
Mask and respirator litigation for 3M Company in products-liability cases brought by plaintiffs alleging injury from exposure to asbestos, silica, or coal dust in connection with their claimed use of 3M respiratory protection products.
Represented grain supplier in genetically modified corn class action involving Starlink corn.
Negotiated remediation and indemnification agreement with mining company to cleanup property.
Obtained summary judgment in silica exposure litigation.
Assists clients in the negotiation of oil, gas and mineral rights leasing.
Assisted concrete company in pursuit of opening a new quarry site and obtaining necessary wetlands permits and drafting environmental covenants.
Phase I Reviews for Bank Branch Acquisitions
Investigated manufacturer operations regarding welding.
Long time representation of dry cleaning supply company including advice and consultation on environmental issues and litigation involving property damage and personal injury claims regarding exposure to perchloroethylene and tetra chloroethylene.
Supervised insurance counsel for limestone quarry operator in numerous blasting damage cases
Representation of a construction material supplier manufacturer in a silica litigation throughout the U.S.
Represented remediation contractor in action against engineer who performed remedial investigation for failure to properly delineate scope of waste.
Assisted developer in defending ADEM investigation and third party claims relating to stormwater runoff into lake.
Successfully represented a mobile home manufacturing company in allegations concerning formaldehyde exposure in mobile homes.
Assisted client in UST removal and soil contamination matter.
Obtained summary judgment on toxic mold claims in Alabama and Mississippi.
Defended indemnification action relating to groundwater contamination for seller of steel mill.
Investigated unauthorized landfill and advised client regarding reporting requirements.
Defend Visionland operator from ADEM stormwater investigation.
Obtained permission to connect sewer system to development from City of Moody, with opposition from ADEM due to insufficient system.
Special Servicer hired us to obtain an emergency receivership over the objection of the borrower for this apartment complex and to assert multi-million dollar claims against the guarantors, as well as the sub-servicer and master servicer for breach of duties arising out of a pooling and servicing agreement.
We obtained an emergency receivership of this franchised hotel and successfully transitioned the hotel to a receiver with hospitality experience without losing the flag.
Assisted facility with wetlands investigation by Corps of Engineers.
Successful defense and ultimate settlement of mass tort action in state court involving approximately 1600 plaintiffs alleging contamination of their properties from air pollution emanating from surrounding industrial facilities. Also settled federal court declaratory judgment action by group of insurance companies.
Pharmaceutical client is now subject to the new Chemical Manufacturers Area Source MACT, with a compliance date in October. I have assisted the client in analyzing the rule, their compliance strategy, and in negotiating alternative monitoring.
Assisted oil and gas client in response to US EPA CERCLA (Superfund) investigation relating to historic community-wide contamination.
Representation of two clients in a CERCLA (Superfund) Investigation, including multiple responses to Section 104(e) investigation letters, involving the Chemetco Superfund Site (The Chemico Metals Corporation facility), which operated as a secondary copper smelting facility on 41 acres of land near Hartford, Illinois.
Analyzed proposed NESHAP regulations, worked with client to support client's position as to regulations, drafted, and submitted comments to the federal docket.
Obtained dismissal of municipality in a third-party complaint filed by an independent waste water treatment facility for indemnification for the treatment facility's regulatory violations.
Obtained a significant victory for the operator of the Concord Coal Preparation Plant by getting a final dismissal of a class action that had been pending since 1997 after an evidentiary hearing challenging the same.
Successfully defended Anadarko Petroleum in endangered species act and national environmental policy act challenge in the Southern District of Alabama to the lease of property from the United States in the Gulf of Mexico immediately post-Deepwater Horizon event for the purpose of oil exploration. Case dismissed on appeal to Eleventh Circuit.
Represented defense contractor in connection with an incident which occurred at Naval Air Station in California, and the subsequent sale of the company with pending issues regarding liability to the US Government for cleanup.
Assisted in environmental due diligence in purchase of major manufacturing facility in Tennessee.
Representation of cement manufacturer in responding to an EPA Region IX Investigation regarding compliance with the New Source Review and Prevention of Significant Deterioration requirements promulgated under the authority of the Clean Air Act, 42 U.S.C. §§7401-7671q
Assisted Oil Terminal in responding to a Spill Prevention, Control, and Countermeasure (SPCC) Notice of Violation regarding requirements for oil spill prevention, preparedness, and response to prevent oil discharges to navigable waters and adjoining shorelines. The rule requires specific facilities to prepare, amend, and implement SPCC Plans. Negotiated successful settlement for client.
Representation of Purchaser of Brownfield Property.
Assists MetLife with review of Phase 1 and Phase 2 surveys and preparation of a plan for development of a Multi-Use residential/commercial property development in Nashville.
Assist Mueller Water Products in subdividing property and re-permitting several sites in Bessemer and North Birmingham, Alabama. Including, but not limited to, RCRA Post Closure Permitting.
Represent company in environmental appeal.
  • Represents nationwide multifamily housing provider in investigating, managing, defending, and resolving environmental claims at its residential properties, including claims for mold, asbestos, lead, and other exposures; and providing guidance on various other legal issues impacting client’s operations and management of hundreds of apartment complexes across the United States.
  • Coauthored amicus curiae brief on behalf of DRI—The Voice of the Defense Bar supporting successful petitioners urging that U.S. Supreme Court find federal statutory pre-emption of common law nuisance claims for global warming in AEP v. Connecticut, 131 S. Ct. 2527 (2011).
  • Assisted international real estate developer in matter involving environmental contamination of client-owned apartment complex caused by gasoline station operations of adjacent landowner, including providing guidance regarding permitting access to property for investigation, working with expert consultants for analysis of vapor intrusion test results, and negotiating agreements defining scope of environmental investigation with counsel for adjacent landowner.
  • Represented client in multi-party CERCLA cost recovery and contribution action brought by owner of contaminated property against prior owners and operators of property seeking recovery of portions of multimillion dollar investigation and remediation costs.
  • Defended consumer product manufacturer in premises liability asbestos cases in Illinois, Delaware, and California, including drafting motions that ultimately resulted in dismissal of all claims against client.