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The 12th Annual Santa Fe Advanced Conference on Litigating

Natural Resource Damages

Best strategies and tactics to handle large, complex NRD cases today

Presented on July 18 & 19, 2019

Santa Fe, NM

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Program Overview

Who Should Order

In-house and private attorneys, consultants, corporate managers, Tribal and governmental representatives, and others who are involved in natural resource damage claims

Why You will Benefit from the Replay

This year the Santa Fe NRD conference will open with John Cruden discussing how the concept of cooperative federalism has evolved and what that evolution suggests for the relationship between federal, state, and tribal natural resource trustees. We will hear about ideas for regulatory reform, and where that effort stands, and we will hear from both federal and state trustees on how they see their roles and priorities moving forward.

Two major developments raise questions about the scope of federal environmental jurisdiction. We will hear commentary about the Trump Administration's efforts to limit the definition of Waters of the United States, and the SCOTUS decision in County of Maui v. Hawai'i Wildlife Fund, and what the implications are for industry and the regulated community with respect to indirect discharges.

We are continuing and expanding our efforts to identify and bring significant experience to cutting-edge issues facing NRD practitioners. We will explore the expanding scope of regulation and litigation involving Perfluorinated Chemicals (PFCs), and we will devote much of day 2 of our conference to discussing how climate change, rising sea levels and water temperatures, and extreme weather events -- including wildfires in the West -- are impacting natural resources and NRD claims.

You will hear from, interact with, and receive practical tips from leading NRD experts from around the country. We hope you'll be able to join us for this year's iteration of the best, longest-running NRD program in the country.

~ Sarah P. Bell, Esq. of Farella Braun + Martel and William J. Jackson, Esq. of Kelley Drye & Warren, Program Co-Chairs

What You Will Learn

  • The status and future of cooperative federalism
  • Federal case law and administrative developments
  • State NRD claims and activities
  • The scope of federal jursidiction: Waters of the US
  • Federal liability as a PRP
  • Progress towards regulatory reform
  • Claims involving Perfluorinated Chemicals (PFCs)
  • Claims involving climate change including:
  • ~ Rising sea levels
  • ~ Warming water temperatures
  • ~ Prolonged periods of extreme weather
  • ~ Wildfires
  • Environmental damages in the context of climate change
  • Practical tips for defending NRD claims

What Attendees Said

  • "The presenters were an extraordinary group of diverse thinkers who did an excellent job of bringing home the complexities of NRD matters."
  • "Very useful conference"
  • "Always a great meeting. I enjoyed the program."
  • Thank you. It was an excellent course with great speakers and impressive content. Glad to participate and present.
  • "Best Year Yet!"
  • "This is the best NRDA LSI I have been to in the past 3 years. Thank you!"

Agenda Day 1

8:00 am

Registration Opens

8:30 am

Introduction & Overview

William J. Jackson, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Kelley Drye & Warren / Houston, TX

Sarah P. Bell, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Farella Braun + Martel / San Francisco, CA

8:45 am

Special Opening Address: The Status and Future of Cooperative Federalism

A discussion of the relationship between federal, state, and tribal natural resource trustees, cooperative federalism, and the scope of trusteeship and authority

John C. Cruden, Esq.
Beveridge & Diamond / Washington, DC

9:15 am

Federal Update

Key case law and administrative developments from the federal perspective, and a discussion of important issues from the federal trustees' perspective

James H. Colopy, Esq.
Farella Braun + Martel / San Francisco, CA

Craig R. O'Connor, Esq. , Special Counsel for Natural Resources
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Admin. / Seattle, WA

10:15 am


10:30 am

Regulatory Reform: A Status Report

What is actually happening in Washington regarding NRD regulatory reform?

Brian Israel, Esq.
Arnold & Porter / Washington, DC

11:00 am

The Rapidly Expanding Scope of Litigation and NRD Implications of Perfluorinated Chemicals (PFCs)

Wide-ranging litigation across the country, including an MDL concerning AFFF and multiple industrial site-specific matters from the DuPont Parkersburg plant to the 3M Cottage Grove plant

Robert A. Bilott, Esq.
Taft Stettinius & Hollister / Cincinnati, OH

Constance Travers , Principal Associate, Vice President
Abt Associates / Boulder, CO

12:00 pm

Lunch (on your own)

1:15 pm

State NRD Claims and Activities

Natural resource priorities and trends among State Trustees and Attorneys General in the West, as well as an update on the new NRD initiative from New Jersey

William J. Jackson, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Kelley Drye & Warren / Houston, TX

Clive Strong, Esq. , Legal Director for Natural Resources and Environment
Conference of Western Attorneys General / Boise, ID

2:30 pm

Statistics in NRD Litigation: Good Practice and Lessons for Attorneys

Key expert and legal issues in NRD litigation

William Warren-Hicks, Ph.D. , CEO
EcoStat, Inc. / Mebane, NC

3:00 pm


3:15 pm

Waters of the United States

The US Supreme Court has accepted the Hawaii case on discharges to groundwater, and the Trump Administration has substantially curtailed the definition: Will these developments result in a substantial retreat of federal jurisdiction over waters?

Scott E. Kauff, Esq.
Law Offices of John K. Dema / Rockville, MD

4:00 pm

Defending NRD Claims: Insights and Practical Tips from In-House Counsel for PRPs

Key takeaways from recent cases

Stephanie McClain Hall, Esq. , Vice President-Litigation
Valero Energy Corporation / San Antonio, TX

Judith A. George, Esq. , Senior Corporate Counsel, Safety, Sustainability & Environmental Services
Republic Services / Phoenix, AZ

Tim George , Vice President, Environmental Liability and Remediation Management
Valero Energy / San Antonio, TX

5:00 pm

Continue the Exchange of Ideas: Reception for Faculty and Attendees

Sponsored by Farella Braun + Martel and Kelley Drye & Warren

Friday, July 19, 2019

8:30 am

Climate Change, Rising Sea Levels, Warming Water Temperatures, and Prolonged Periods of Extreme Weather

Sorting out the causes of ecological impacts; interplay between NRD and other tools available to states for addressing natural resource losses

Robert Haddad, Ph.D. , Group VP - Environmental & Earth Sciences
Exponent, Inc. / Menlo Park, CA

Steven H. Goldberg, Esq.
Downey Brand / Sacramento, CA

Jennifer Sampson , Principal
Integral Consulting / Seattle, WA

Theodore Tomasi, Ph.D. , Vice President and Director of National Practices
Cardno, Inc. / Newark, DE

9:45 am

Wildfires: The Relationship Between NRD and Other Avenues for Recovering Damages

Legal and technical perspectives on evaluation of recovery options such as class action suits, implications of the PG&E and potentially other bankruptcy filings, and NRD perspectives

Sarah P. Bell, Esq. , Program Co-Chair
Farella Braun + Martel / San Francisco, CA

Dave Fox, Esq.
Fox Law / Solana Beach, CA

Katherine Palmquist, Ph.D. , Managing Scientist
Exponent, Inc. / Bellevue, WA

10:30 am


10:45 am

Federal Liability as a PRP

The unique and often difficult issues that arise when the federal government is both a trustee and a responsible party in natural resource damages and federal contamination cases

John D.S. Gilmour, Esq.
Kelley Drye & Warren / Houston, TX

A. J. Gravel , Senior Managing Director
FTI Consulting / Bethesda, MD

11:30 am

Economic and Financial Issues

Environmental damages in the context of climate change

Robert E. Unsworth , Principal
Industrial Economics, Incorporated / Cambridge, MA

Ryan Stifter , Director, Economics & Complex Analytics
Roux Associates / Oakland, CA

12:30 pm

Evaluations & Adjourn

Faculty Bios

Sarah Peterma Sarah Peterma n Bell, Program Co-Chair, is a Partner at Farella Braun + Martel. She focuses her practice on environmental and natural resources litigation.

William J. Jackson, William J. Jackson, Program Co-Chair, also is co-chair of the National Environmental Law practice group at Kelley Drye & Warren.

Robert A. Bilott Robert A. Bilott is a partner at Taft Stettinius & Hollister. He brought the first PFAS environmental exposure case in 1999.

James H. Colopy, James H. Colopy, partner at Farella Braun + Martel, focuses on citizen suit litigation, cost recovery actions, and toxic tort cases.

John C. Cruden John C. Cruden is a partner at Beveridge & Diamond. He formerly served at DOJ and as President of American College of Environmental Lawyers.

Dave Fox Dave Fox is the founder of Fox Law, a former federal prosecutor, and a seasoned plaintiffs trial lawyer. He is also a principal at Wild Fire Legal Group, and is on the Plaintiffs' Executive Committee for the 2015 Butte Fire that is being litigated against PG&E.

Judith A. George Judith A. George is Senior Corporate Counsel for Safety, Sustainability & Environmental Services at Republic Services.

Tim George is Vice President, Environmental Liability and Remediation Management, at Valero, where he is responsible for managing soil and groundwater cleanup obligations, due diligence, and site decontamination and demolition.

John D.S. Gilmour John D.S. Gilmour co-chairs the Environmental Litigation section at Kelley Drye & Warren.

Steven H. Goldberg Steven H. Goldberg is a partner at Downey Brand focusing on groundwater contamination and CERCLA matters.

A. J. Gravel A. J. Gravel is a Senior Managing Director in FTI Consulting's Forensic Litigation and Consulting segment.

Robert Haddad, Ph.D., Robert Haddad, Ph.D., Group VP - Environmental & Earth Sciences for Exponent, Inc., was head of NOAA's Assessment & Restoration Division.

Stephanie McClain Hall Stephanie McClain Hall is Vice President-Litigation at Valero Energy Corporation where she manages environmental litigation.

Brian Israel, Brian Israel, chair of the Environmental Practice Group at Arnold & Porter, is lead counsel for BP in relation to the Deepwater Horizon.

Scott E. Kauff Scott E. Kauff is Of Counsel at the Law Offices of John K. Dema. He serves as special environmental counsel for state trustees.

Craig R. O'Connor is Special Counsel for Natural Resources for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

Katherine Palmquist, Ph.D., Katherine Palmquist, Ph.D., is a Managing Scientist for Exponent, Inc. She focuses on chemical risks to aquatic taxa.

Jennifer Sampson Jennifer Sampson is a Principal for Integral Consulting where she is an aquatic ecologist and risk assessor.

Ryan Stifter Ryan Stifter is Director of Economics & Complex Analytics at Roux Associates where he focuses on non-market valuations.

Clive Strong Clive Strong is Legal Director for Natural Resources and Environment for the Conference of Western Attorneys General.

Theodore Tomasi is Vic Theodore Tomasi is Vic e President and Director of National Practices for Cardno, Inc. He manages the company's natural resources sector.

Constance Travers, Constance Travers, Principal Associate and Vice President of Abt Associates, is a hydrogeologist. Her work has included per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS).

Robert E. Unsworth Robert E. Unsworth is a Principal at Industrial Economics, Incorporated. He focuses on applied natural resource and environmental economics.

William Warren-Hicks is CEO William Warren-Hicks is CEO of EcoStat, Inc. He provides consulting expertise in the areas of environmental statistical analysis.

Continuing Education Credits

Live credits: This program qualifies for 10.20 NM, 10.45 CA, and 10.20 WA MCLE credits. It also qualifies for 10.20 ABCEP environmental professionals maintenance hours. Upon request, we will help you apply for MCLE credits in other states and other types of credits.