Environmental Justice

At Troutman Sanders, we have extensive experience with environmental justice (EJ) issues. We have counseled numerous companies on the impact of former President Clinton's executive order on environmental justice in connection with facility siting and permitting issues. Among our many accomplished attorneys, one participated in development of Title VI guidance at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). He also led that agency's work in developing a position regarding the intersection of environmental laws and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA).

We understand that sometimes a proactive approach towards EJ issues can lead to significant benefits for companies. For example, we assisted a Fortune 100 corporation in establishing community groups that participated, as appropriate, around major plants. Keeping the public involved and informed of new developments resulted in greatly improved relations with the community — and possibly saving the company millions of dollars in potential claims. This is not an appropriate route for every company, but will work to the great benefit of some.

  • Defended a major city in south Florida in a case alleging environmental injustice associated with a Superfund site.
  • Represented a state transportation-planning agency in a lawsuit brought by several organizations. The suit alleged that transportation alternatives adopted in the state’s Regional Transportation Plan and Transportation Improvement Program created a disproportional adverse environmental impact on low-income and minority residents.
  • Advised a city in Virginia on environmental-justice issues in connection with concerns regarding tribal archaeological artifacts and a public water-supply project.
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