2015 Environmental Compliance and Commitment Law Summit
8:00 am - 9:00 amRegistration and Networking Breakfast
9:00 am - 9:15 amWelcoming Remarks

Gerry Pels
Locke Lord LLP
9:15 am - 10:15 amGood Cop/Bad Cop: How Can Companies Protect Their Contribution Rights as Cooperating PRPs Given DOJ's Efforts to Erode CERCLA Liability to Protect Federal Agency PRP Liability?

In the rough and tumble world of environmental compliance, it’s a constant you can count on: the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will encourage companies to cooperate at Superfund sites. In recent developments, this unshakable tenant has come under fire as the Department of Justice (DOJ) has advanced arguments undercutting CERCLA liability in cases where the United States, the largest PRP by virtue of the cumulative CERCLA liability of federal agencies at Superfund sites across the country, is a party.  Unfortunately for corporate counsel and their external advisors, the DOJ's efforts to protect the CERCLA liability of federal agencies has had the effect of increasing the potential liability of companies at Superfund sites. Kick off the day of cutting-edge compliance discussions with this spotlight on recent developments in CERCLA liability case law. 

Take a break from interrogatories and responses for this fireside chat with Gary Justis with questions by Gerry Pels.  Topics of discussion will include:

  • Other efforts by DOJ to change CERCLA liability case law
  • Recommendations for cooperating PRPs to preserve claims in light of these recent and potential developments
Gary Justis
The Justis Law Firm LLC

Gerry Pels
Locke Lord LLP

10:15 am - 11:15 amDevelopment and Enhancement of EHS Programs

As enforcement penalties and the public's focus on environmental issues continue to experience exponential growth, companies have increased their investments in regulatory compliance. Short of a crisis, how can a company evaluate its compliance costs? This session will discuss the hallmarks of a strong compliance approach and provide a step-by-step evaluative process for ensuring that your company is getting a strong compliance return on its EHS monitoring, record keeping, and reporting.

  • State of practice—how do companies comply?
  • What is working well?
  • What is happening at the law firm level, among agencies, governments?
  • Ramifications of efforts in Europe and how these affect the U.S. market
Ben Cowan
Locke Lord LLP

Jeffrey Mann
Environmental Manager
National Oilwell Varco

Bruce Taten  
Former Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer (retired 2013)
Cooper Industries Ltd.

Chris Verducci
Locke Lord LLP

Discussion Leader
Jerry Higdon
Locke Lord LLP

11:15 am - 11:30 amRefreshment Break
11:30 am - 12:30 pmValuation of Environmental Liability at Industrial Sites

Valuation of environmental liability at industrial sites is required under many circumstances, including for acquisition/divestiture transactions, establishment of environmental reserves, procurement of insurance, and to support environmental litigation claims. The approach and level of effort to quantify the environmental liability at industrial sites can vary widely depending upon the business objectives driving the need for the evaluation, the regulatory requirements, and the quantity and quality of available site information. This panel discussion will review various scenarios in which valuation of environmental liability are commonly conducted, the key variables that should be considered when estimating liability, and various accepted valuation methods. The importance of the key variables and the pros and cons of various valuation methods will be illustrated through the discussion of one or more case studies.  

Andrew Baris
Vice President and Principal Hydrogeologist
Roux Associates, Inc.

Doug Swanson
Roux Associates, Inc.

Anne Viner
General Counsel, Director of Environmental Risk Management
WCD Group

12:30 pm - 1:45 pmNetworking Lunch
1:45 pm - 2:45 pmThe FUTURE of Due Diligence: Integrating Quantitative Analysis to Mitigate Environmental Risk

Business transactions that include real property can be risky. Whether the transaction involves a management buyout, private equity, or a family transition strategy, businesses and their owners must be proactive and precisely calculate the financial implications of environmental risk before formalizing business and real estate transactions.  Understanding the nature and extent of environmental challenges is an important early step for buyers considering an acquisition. It also is critical for sellers to have a realistic understanding of the environmental issues at their property to be able to negotiate the best divestiture deal possible.  All too often, environmental surveys are inconclusive and difficult to interpret, with the actual costs of needed remediation unclear. By taking a quantitative and integrated approach to the business and environmental issues – including  legal, insurance, regulatory compliance, claims, and litigation –businesses can utilize risk management solutions to profitably close the deal and mitigate potential environmental risk.

Wm. Chip D'Angelo
Founder and CEO
WCD Group

Benjamin Skjold
General Counsel
North American High Speed Rail Group, LLC

Anne Viner
General Counsel, Director of Environmental Risk Management
WCD Group

2:45 pm - 3:00 pmRefreshment Break
3:00 pm - 4:00 pmRipped from the Headlines: Managing Environmental Investigations, Regulatory Enforcement Actions, and Criminal Inquiries

This panel will walk through a hypothetical situation with the audience where parties identify and then must address a potentially significant environmental compliance issue. This thought exercise will bear a completely coincidental resemblance to a recent news feature. Discussion points will include:

• How to conduct an internal investigation (structuring the investigation, working with your team, providing professional and ethical representation)
• How to manage the issue with respect to regulators (do you report it, and other practical and ethical issues that arise in the context of government investigations)
• How to avoid these types of situations to begin with (structuring your internal environmental compliance team)

Jacob Hollinger
McDermott Will & Emery LLP

Steven Feldman
Murphy & McGonigle

Discussion Leader
Daphne W. Trotter
McDermott Will & Emery LLP

4:00 pm - 5:00 pmCommunity, Public Relations Issues and Ethics Related Issues In Environmental and Energy Infrastructure Development

As any fan of Parks and Rec can tell you, when it comes to an infrastructure development project, community integration and buy-in is a must-have on par with an environmental impact statement.  As is a sense of humor.  This panel will discuss the guiding questions driving a successful approach, including how to spot factors that can lead your project into sitcom worthy situations.
  • What are the attributes and some ethical practices used in a successful community/ public relations strategy
  • How does a CR/PR strategy interface with public meetings required under environmental regulations
  • What kinds of projects and ethical principles are most likely in need of a sophisticated CR/PR protocol
  • What are community activists’ “hot buttons” in infrastructure development
  • What is the value proposition underlying a CR/PR effort
Patricia Kornick
Senior Consultant - Public Affairs 
Natural Resource Group (NRG) LLC

Andrew S. Levine
Stradley Ronon Stevens & Young, LLP

Joe McGinn
Senior Manager, Public Affairs
Sunoco and Sunoco Logistics Partners LP

Geraldine A. Smith
General Environmental Counsel
Managing Director, Environment
PSEG Services Corporation

5:00 pm - 6:00 pmCocktail Reception