Chris advises companies, investment funds, industrial manufacturers, developers and lenders on the impact of federal and state environmental regulations on commercial contracts, balance sheets and risk management programs. He facilitates land use and other permitting for large manufacturing facilities, waste handling and disposal operations, and assists with asbestos, radon, lead-based paint and air and water pollution remediation, as well as wetlands management. He also negotiates with governmental agencies to secure liability protections for clients and funding related to brownfields redevelopments.
Chris provides crisis management services for high-risk, public exposure situations in commercial and residential real estate settings, including providing real-time counsel in emergency situations. Companies managing potential exposures to hazardous materials call on Chris to provide immediate remediation counsel and longer-term crisis management advice.
Chris has extensive experience representing clients in indemnification disputes and government negotiations on both private and multiparty levels in complex environmental enforcement and litigation matters. He has represented clients in Superfund litigation involving defensive prosecution of private-party, cost-recovery access. He also oversees the economic evaluation of engineered resolutions for remedial investigations, feasibility studies, risk assessments and remedial action plans.
- In separate matters in California and Florida, assisted clients in responding to requests for information in connection with violations of the state air regulations, including violations under a Title V permit.
- Negotiated a Consent Decree on behalf of a public company for the implementation of a multimillion-dollar Final Remedy at Pennsylvania NPL Site under the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Innovative Technology Risk Sharing Program, whereby the EPA will reimburse half of implementation cost if it determines that the selected remedy does meet the remedial objectives.
- On behalf of a buyer, coordinated all environmental due diligence for a Pennsylvania steel manufacturing facility and provided ongoing environmental counseling for day-to-day operation, including water, waste and potential investments in emerging energy technologies.
Community Relations Support
- Presented to the Chester City, PA, open hall forum to answer questions about the development of the Major League Soccer stadium adjacent to the Commodore Barry Bridge to resolve any concerns about exposure to operations at the site.
- Created an action plan when the lessee of a day care center was informed that the land was located on a former steel manufacturing facility. Chris helped present the results of the testing completed over a weekend to explain that the results did not exceed any thresholds of exposure to hazardous substances.
- When a consultant failed to analyze the test results for lead and asbestos in the rehabilitation of a former lead acid battery manufacturing building, we developed a compressive plan to clean the building in stages, and no employees raised any concerns.
Development and Redevelopment
- Quarterbacking a team of lawyers in a multimillion-dollar brownfields mixed-use development of a professional stadium as well as residential, office and commercial development. Magnitude aside, the project involved a unique mix of challenges to the time-sensitive nature of the project and its combination of public and private funding and on-site environmental contamination. Specific aspects of the work involved – negotiating complex agreements with the governmental agencies and quasi-public authorities, redevelopment authorities and local governments to secure land, local land development approvals and overseeing all land use and environmental permitting for the project.
Mergers and Acquisitions
- On behalf of the seller, in anticipation of a $80M sale of a health care company in the southwest region, successfully implemented, on an expedited basis, a comprehensive environmental health and safety assessment and remedial program to address 15 Recognized Environmental Conditions and 25 items of noncompliance for 10 health care facilities and related properties. The sale closed successfully without significant independent buyer due diligence and no environmental deal issues.
- On behalf of the buyer, coordinated all environmental aspects for the due diligence, deal documentation and financing for the acquisitions of 11 long-term health care facilities in the New England region and six long-term health care facilities in the Mid-Atlantic region.
- On behalf of buyers, coordinated all environmental aspects for the due diligence, deal documentation and financing for the $1B + acquisition of a nationwide automotive dealership company with 120 + facilities and $0.5B acquisition of a steel manufacturing company with 17 world-wide manufacturing and distribution centers, including Mexico and Peru, with compliance issues for Prop 65, the EU and NAFTA.