Overview

Jeff Davidson’s environmental practice consists of three related areas: litigation, resolution of environmental risks and liabilities in commercial contexts, and counseling on existing and emerging environmental regulatory programs. With over 40 years of experience, he has represented clients before all major federal environmental and energy agencies and handled significant matters in over 35 states. His clients are predominantly corporate entities, but he also has experience representing individuals, trade associations and public interest groups.

Litigation – Jeff has defended clients in both civil and criminal environmental actions at the federal and state level across all of the major environmental programs. He has prosecuted and defended private party cleanup cost claims including successful claims against the United States for cost recovery under the federal Superfund program. He has prosecuted and defended diminution of property value claims related to contamination of real estate parcels. His toxic tort experience includes resolution of litigation and related claims arising from risks from chlorinated solvents, PCBs, heavy metals, and asbestos arising from ingestion, dermal exposure, and indoor air respiration. As part of his dispute resolution practice, Jeff has overseen confidential private investigations and audits, including process safety audits under OSHA. He has completed the JAMS mediation 40-hour training course and frequently uses mediation to resolve environmental disputes.

Commercial Matters – Jeff has conducted due diligence efforts for M&A deals ranging from $10 million to well over $1 billion. He has drafted and annually updated his corporate department form files related to environmental representations, warranties, indemnities, and escrow accounts and negotiated the key environmental provisions in nearly one hundred transactions. He has prepared environmental disclosures in conformance with SEC requirements and best practices. In the real estate field, Jeff has successfully negotiated numerous Brownfields agreements, deed restrictions, and related covenants with states and municipalities, as well as environmental provisions in traditional real estate contracts between and among private parties and lenders.

Counseling – Jeff advises clients regarding legacy and emerging regulatory programs including, currently, the new Waters of the United States ( “WOTUS”) rulemaking and the multi-faceted issues presented at the federal and state level regulation of “forever chemicals” such as the PFAS family of substances. Jeff has prepared comments with federal agencies on proposed rules and participated in numerous challenges to final rules under the Administrative Procedure Act. He has conducted training programs for corporate clients and national organizations such as the Environmental Law Institute and lectured at law school environmental clinics.

Jeff’s pro bono practice focuses on representing victims of domestic violence through the Civil Protection Order process administered by the Superior Court of the District of Columbia.

While attending public policy graduate school, Jeff served as a judicial intern in the Office of the Administrative Assistant to the Chief Justice of the Supreme Court of the United States.

Jeff is listed in the 2010 and 2013 through 2021 editions of Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business in the area of Environmental Law. In 2018, he was named to the Capital Pro Bono Honor Roll, which is jointly sponsored by the District of Columbia Court of Appeals and the Superior Court of D.C. and recognizes attorneys who provide 50 or more hours of pro bono services per year.

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Experience

Currently representing an individual in a civil enforcement case in federal district court brought by the U.S. Attorney’s Office alleging wetland violations under the Clean Water Act in the development of residential parcels.

Currently representing a private company in cost recovery claims against the United States under the Superfund program alleging that past releases by the U.S. Navy has caused material PCB contamination of river sediments now owned by the company and in defense of claims by state authorities seeking cleanup of said contamination.

Currently representing a national real estate asset management company in responding to the petroleum release by a nearby gasoline station adversely affecting a residential apartment building, including prosecution of claims against the polluter, negotiating appropriate cleanup standards with the relevant state environmental agency, and coordinating the response with a major oil company who had past experience at the site.

Currently representing a company and a charitable foundation who own substantial timber interests in negotiations for a carbon credit agreement with a national leader in the carbon markets space.

Currently representing a private landowner in disputes with U.S. Army Corps of Engineers under the FUDS program.

*Represented an electronics manufacturer in a state environmental criminal investigation that alleged that it negligently, recklessly, or intentionally exposed its workers to hydrofluoric acid releases causing significant personal injuries.

*Represented a major manufacturer in a federal criminal action brought by the US Attorney’s Office alleging Clean Water Act ocean disposal violations as part of an improper commercial scheme.

*Represented a major electronics manufacturer in demonstrating compliance with “Green Supply Chain” audits required by various customers.

*Represented a landowner in a cost recovery and enforcement action by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Justice in a Superfund National Priorities List (NPL) site.

*Represented a former airport fuel farm operator in a federal district court cost recovery claim filed by a major international airport authority.

*Represented a major manufacturing entity in various permit and enforcement actions brought by the California DTSC under the RCRA Corrective Action regulations focusing on allegations of adjacent residential neighborhood lead contamination.

*Represented an industrial tenant in a federal district court action brought by the property owner alleging cost recovery claims in excess of $100 million arising from the tenant’s operations.

*Represented an irrigation and hydropower utility in negotiations with EPA leading to a site-specific water quality standard for a receiving water body.

*Represented a real estate developer against claims by multiple parties and state enforcement agencies that a construction accident polluted and closed a municipal water supply well leaving a town with only a temporary water supply and the community confronting a significant risk of cryptosporidium exposure.

*Represented a manufacturing company with respect to historic releases of volatile organic compounds that had polluted numerous private drinking wells and caused alleged toxic exposures to adults and children.

*Represented a consumer goods company in connection with a multimillion-dollar Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) administrative enforcement action commenced by an EPA Regional Office.

*Represented a brownfield landowner in an enforcement action by a state agency alleging concerns regarding vapor intrusion.

*Represented a national home builder in defending a Temporary Restraining Order brought by a U.S. Corps of Engineer District Office alleging wetland violations under the Clean Water Act.

*Represented a private school with respect to the inadvertent potential exposures of school children to asbestos arising from construction renovation work.

*Represented the private owner of a property contaminated by radioactive waste regulated under the FUSRAP program administered by the U.S. Corps of Engineers and the U.S. Department of Energy.

*Represented a petroleum refiner with respect to a process safety compliance audit in the aftermath of a catastrophic refinery explosion and in response to a directive of the U.S. Chemical Safety Board.

*Represented a major trade organization in negotiations with the EPA with respect to the implementation of the PCB Regulatory Program exception under TSCA.

*Represented a major manufacturing company in defense of alleged violations of mobile source releases made by the California Air Resources Board.

*Experience gained by attorney prior to joining Kilpatrick Townsend

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Services
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Education

Duke University M.A. (1977) Public Policy Sciences

Duke University School of Law J.D. (1977)

Duke University A.B. (1973)

Admissions

District of Columbia (1977)

Massachusetts (1998)

Court Admissions

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

U.S. Supreme Court

Professional & Community Activities

Duke University Law School Environmental Clinic, Advisor

Vienna Presbyterian Church, Past Trustee

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