Environmental law is a complex and interlocking body of law comprised of state and federal statutes, regulations, and case law. Given the broad scope of environmental law, no definitive list of environmental laws is possible. However, generally speaking, environmental law may be divided into areas relating to pollution or conservation. Pollution laws generally relate to pollution control, remediation, of toxic exposure.
Laws relating to pollution include commonly known laws such as:
- Clean Air Act
- Clean Water Act
- Oil Pollution Act (“OPA”)
- Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (“RCRA”)
As well as some lesser known, but equally potent laws such as:
- Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (“CERCLA”)
- Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (“FIFRA”)
- National Invasive Species Act (“NISPA”)
- Pollution Prevention Act
- Toxic Substances Control Act (“TSCA”)
Pollution laws are generally are intended to protect and preserve both the natural environment and human health. Litigating such actions focuses on the underlying facts, the limitations and expenses that such laws impose on businesses weighed against the benefit to the environment derived from same, and the manner in which the laws are enforced.
Unlike many other types of law, environmental law involves a lot of science, data, and a general understanding of the interplay between the law and the environment. While it is true that the advancement and defense of your case will heavily rely on experts, it is equally true that having a knowledgeable attorney with a scientific background means you’ll save on your counsel’s research expenses and there will be less chance for an opposing party to advance otherwise objectionable claims or evidence.