The complex body of regulations governing solid and hazardous waste treatment, storage, disposal, and recycling requires extensive knowledge of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) regulatory program and its state law equivalents. RCRA establishes a complex and comprehensive “cradle-to-grave” program governing all aspects of waste generation, handling, treatment, storage, and disposal. The federal RCRA program also regulates underground storage tanks and used oil. Many state programs expand the RCRA regulatory model to include regulation of aboveground storage tanks.
Our attorneys routinely counsel clients with respect to solid and hazardous waste issues faced by waste generators, transporters and disposers. Among other things, our attorneys are adept at the following:
- identifying regulatory exemptions that allow a facility to operate without any changes
- implementing cost-effective facility modifications when necessary
- obtaining necessary permits or approvals
- assisting clients with landfill closure and post-closure issues and obligations
We additionally assist clients with site cleanup issues under the RCRA corrective action program, and we have successfully defended RCRA civil, criminal and administrative enforcement actions brought by private citizen plaintiffs, U.S. EPA and the states. In many cases, we have obtained dismissal of the actions, while in others we have negotiated highly favorable settlements, including up to 90% reductions in proposed penalties.
Our attorneys additionally routinely handle aboveground and underground storage tank registration, decommissioning, release reporting, release investigation and corrective action and compliance matters. In addition, we assist clients with cost recovery or trust fund recovery to the extent that funds may be recoverable to defray the costs of addressing releases from underground storage tanks.
Whether these issues arise in the course of a transaction, a plan to develop potentially impacted property, in response to an enforcement action, or as a result of a voluntary investigation, we have the experience to protect your interests.