RW&G's Climate Change Practice Group brings an interdisciplinary
approach to the climate change issues confronting cities, counties, and
private parties. Since the passage of AB 32, SB 97, and implementing regulations,
many cities, and other public and private entities are confronting a myriad
of global warming issues. The RW&G Climate Change Group brings together
specialists from several departments and practice groups, including Public
Law, Real Estate, Environmental, and Public Finance Law, to afford the
best possible coordinated approach to specific issues in this rapidly
Sustainable Cities, Alternative Energy
and Energy Efficiency Standards
RW&G Attorneys worked with the City of Palm Desert
to draft and implement AB 811, a creative public funding statute that
permits City residents to borrow funds for energy efficient homes secured
by real property liens. This program makes solar panels (as an example)
affordable to many residents who might otherwise lack the initial capital
to invest in that alternative energy source. RW&G put together a team
of lawyers from its Public Finance, Public Law, and Real Estate Departments
to assist its client in implementing the first municipal program pursuant
to AB 811. RW&G also represents other public entities, including Sonoma
County, that are seeking to implement AB 811 programs.
RW&G Public Law Attorneys in its San Francisco office represent the
newly formed Marin County Joint Powers Authority that seeks to supply
county residents with electrical power provided from alternative energy
CEQA and Climate Change Requirements
SB 97 and the CEQA lawsuit filed by Attorney General Brown
against the County of San Bernardino highlight the necessity of evaluating
the effect of climate change in local projects. RW&G combines its
existing in-depth CEQA and NEPA review practitioners with real estate
and environmental specialists to advise clients on these new requirements
for discussion of global warming issues in EIRs and negative declarations.
RW&G attorneys monitor the California Air Resources Board’s
efforts to set qualitative or quantitative thresholds of significance
for CEQA projects, and the Office of Planning and Research’s regulatory
efforts to implement SB 97.
Municipalities and Climate Change
Cities and counties across California are considering climate change as
they update general plans and zoning ordinances. SB 375 presents new opportunities
and complexities in addressing regional planning. RW&G’s Public
Law and CEQA experts work with California cities and other local agencies
and districts to respond to demands for new green building ordinances,
purchasing policies, and transportation fleet requirements to respond
to climate change issues.
Greenhouse Gas Emissions Standards:
AB 32, the Global Warming Solutions Act, imposes new obligations on many
groups, including local governments, to control greenhouse gas emissions.
RW&G’s Environmental Department, together with Public Law and
Real Estate Departments, assist clients in approaching the hard questions
of calculating greenhouse gas emissions in connection with particular
projects and comparing those emissions against State or regional benchmarks.
RW&G continues to monitor the latest projections of required greenhouse
gas reductions pursuant to AB 32 and the new initiatives announced by
the California Air Resources Board to achieve the mandated reductions
in greenhouse gas emissions.
RW&G Climate Change Presentations
Larry Wiener recently
spoke at the December 2008 ABA teleconference on CEQA and climate change
issues. RW&G attorneys David Snow and Norman Dupont spoke on CEQA
and Climate Change issues to the California Chapter of the American Planners
Association in September 2008. A
copy of Mr. Snow’s powerpoint presentation is available here.
Greg Stepanicich spoke at the City Attorney’s Association for San
Diego County in the spring of 2008 on the Role of Cities in Addressing
Climate Change. A
copy of Mr. Stepanicich’s powerpoint presentation is available here.
Related Practice Areas:
At RW&G we draw upon legal experience in multiple practice areas to build
the best team for each of our clients. To learn more about related practice
areas, please select from the links below: