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SUSTAINABILITY AND GREEN INITIATIVES

Sustainability is the wise use of natural resources to meet current human needs while preserving the environment so that the needs of future generations may also be met. It is measured by the economic value a business adds to society in relation to its aggregated ecological impact. As sustainability practices grow in social importance, they create new legal demands and economic incentives for business.

Our multidisciplinary team of lawyers has real-world experience in sustainability matters, including climate change, renewable forms of energy, Brownfields, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) construction, mine reclamation, intellectual property, finance and tax issues. We are familiar with the current regulatory environment regarding greenhouse gas emissions and carbon credit markets.

Our attorneys have made several presentations to clients and industry groups concerning pending federal climate change legislation, the EPA’s greenhouse gas rules, carbon credit markets, and the SEC’s climate change disclosure obligations. Also, we have ready access to professionals who provide technical support for achieving our clients’ sustainability objectives. In short, we have the experience and legal resources to help our clients successfully navigate this challenging and dynamic area and capitalize on its impact on emerging markets.

Alternative & Renewable Energy

We assisted a wind and solar energy company that partnered with several local governments in preparing and submitting applications for federal stimulus grants for energy efficiency projects under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009.

We represented a major wind farming company with respect to due diligence, leasing and development work for large scale wind energy projects in Missouri and Iowa.

We oversaw the successful efforts of an ethanol-producing facility in Illinois to obtain Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act permits prior to its commencement of operations.

Climate Change and Carbon Credits

We assisted a landfill in evaluating the feasibility of implementing a voluntary emissions reduction project consisting of a landfill gas-fired waste-to-energy project in order to obtain marketable carbon credits. We worked with the landfill’s consultants to evaluate the potential carbon reductions from the project and with different carbon registries to evaluate the amount of carbon credits that could be issued.

We assisted a 4,000-acre tree farm in evaluating the feasibility of implementing a carbon sequestration project in order to obtain marketable carbon credits. We worked with the farm’s forester to evaluate the potential amount of carbon sequestered by the project and with different carbon registries and aggregators to evaluate the amount of carbon credits that could be issued.

We have presented summaries and overviews of climate change legislative proposals, regulatory changes, and policy considerations to industry groups, municipal leagues and chambers of commerce to help them develop strategies for complying with greenhouse gas emissions requirements and other related climate change considerations.

Intellectual Property

We have prepared and prosecuted patents related to silicon use in photovoltaic cells, fuel cell technologies for vehicular applications, and technology pertaining to electricity-generating heat engines that produce green energy.

We have prosecuted federal trademark registrations for trademarks associated with the sale of renewable energy credits.

We assisted a tenant of a LEED certified building in its efforts to significantly renovate it office space in compliance with LEED requirements.

LEED Construction

We have counseled clients seeking LEED certification for existing buildings and new construction, including negotiating leases for LEED buildings, securing energy credits and handling related U.S. Green Building Council sustainability matters.

For a new, LEED-certified manufacturing facility, we negotiated the acquisition of city-owned land constituting part of the project site for nominal consideration; obtained tax increment financing funds to pay for various soft costs and environmental remediation associated with the project; assisted the client with obtaining funds to assist with the development of energy efficiency; and represented the client in obtaining Recovery Zone tax-exempt bond proceeds.

Tax Credits, Corporate & Finance

We have represented developers, owners, lenders and tax credit syndicators in obtaining state Brownfield tax credits in the revolving tax credit program.

We have assisted a business park owner in obtaining state Brownfield tax credits for a remediation project involving the development of a Brownfield into the corporate headquarters of a major Midwest-based company.

We have represented real estate developers in commercial, residential and lending projects for urban- and transit-oriented development projects. These projects have included development of thousands of residential units, large scale and infill commercial uses, and adaptive reuse of historically significant structures otherwise facing demolition. This representation involved land use entitlement, environmental considerations, economic incentives and tax credit work.

We represented a large agribusiness client in divesting its interests held by a joint venture in a biodiesel facility in Illinois.

We represented a large agribusiness client in negotiating the terms of its minority investment in and strategic relationship with a large, full-service biodiesel company. Our client’s investment was part of a $100 million private equity financing involving multiple strategic partners and investors. We also negotiated the terms under which our client would supply the biodiesel company with raw materials, risk management and logistics expertise. We also negotiated a master feedstock sale agreement and biodiesel purchase agreement with the biodiesel company.

We represented a large agribusiness client in negotiating the terms of its minority investment in a renewable energy company that owns an ethanol facility in Iowa. We also negotiated the terms under which our client would supply the ethanol plant with raw materials and other services. We continue to advise our client in ongoing matters concerning this facility.

Brownfield Redevelopment and Reclamation Projects

Thompson Coburn represented a developer in connection with the purchase of a 153-acre abandoned manufacturing plant and its subsequent transformation into a business park. The negotiation of cleanup cost cap and pollution legal liability insurance policies was integral to the success of the development. In addition, the project received a Community Impact Award from the prestigious Phoenix Award Program in Illinois.

We assisted our client in the purchase and the development of a former steel plant into the then-largest open air shopping center in a large midwestern city. We planned and directed the client’s due diligence investigation, along with the environmental consultants; negotiated and obtained governmental approval of cleanup plans and objectives for distinct areas of the site; obtained approval of those plans from the lenders and bond underwriters that financed the project; created escrows to fund post-closing cleanup; and assisted the client in its implementation and completion of all cleanup activities.

We represented a coal mining company in successfully negotiating a reclamation plan with state and federal regulatory agencies. Implementation of the plan entailed a multimillion-dollar construction project, which transformed the property and made it usable for row crops, pastureland and an endangered species habitat.

News

Ryan Russell Kemper named to St. Louis Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 list

Ryan Russell Kemper to head United Way fundraising effort

Jason Zeigler joins Thompson Coburn in Washington, D.C., as real estate partner

25 Thompson Coburn attorneys recognized in 2015 Chambers USA

Kim Eilerts named a 2015 BTI Client Service All-Star

Kim Eilerts joins boards of Epworth Children and Family Services, St. Louis chapter of U.S. Green Building Council

Katriina S. McGuire joins Thompson Coburn's real estate practice in Chicago

Congratulations to our 15 St. Louis ‘Lawyers of the Year’

Real Estate Group retains a top ranking in 2014 Best of the Best Survey

27 Thompson Coburn attorneys recognized in 2014 Chambers USA

Ryan Kemper, Thompson Coburn environmental practice featured in St. Louis Lawyer

Eric E. Boyd joins Thompson Coburn's Environmental Group

Partner
Chicago
312 580 2214

Eric represents clients in litigation, regulatory compliance, and transaction matters with respect to all of the major environmental programs.

Eric represents clients in litigation, regulatory compliance, and transacti...

Eric Boyd
Partner
Chicago
312 580 2209

Bernie represents developers, land owners and building owners in the areas of land use and municipal law in the City of Chicago and its surrounding municipalities.

Bernie represents developers, land owners and building owners in the areas ...

Bernie Citron
Partner
Washington, D.C.
202 585 6958

Jeff advises business leaders on corporate structuring, the formation and financing of domestic and international transactions, FCC licensing and regulatory matters, and ...

Jeff advises business leaders on corporate structuring, the formation and f...

Jeff Craven
Partner
Chicago
312 580 2234

With over 30 years of experience, Walter serves a diverse group of clients in the acquisition, development and sale of commercial, industrial and residential properties f...

With over 30 years of experience, Walter serves a diverse group of clients ...

Walter Cupkovic
Partner
St. Louis
314 552 6330

Jim is an experienced real estate strategist and negotiator who counsels companies on a broad range of real estate matters, including acquisitions, dispositions, develo...

Jim is an experienced real estate strategist and negotiator who counsels ...

Jim Dillon
Partner
St. Louis
314 552 6172

As Vice-Chair of the Firm’s Mergers and Acquisitions practice, Kim strives to help corporate leaders think creatively to address the challenges that confront their organi...

As Vice-Chair of the Firm’s Mergers and Acquisitions practice, Kim strives ...

Kim Eilerts
Partner
St. Louis
314 552 6031

Dan serves as a practical, imminently accessible legal advisor to developers, institutional owners and corporate users of commercial and industrial real estate throughout...

Dan serves as a practical, imminently accessible legal advisor to developer...

Dan Engle
Partner
St. Louis
314 552 6321

Ryan provides in-depth advice to clients dealing with environmental issues on both the state and federal level.

Ryan provides in-depth advice to clients dealing with environmental issues ...

Ryan Russell Kemper
Partner
St. Louis
314 552 6168

Crystal has almost 30 years of national environmental experience and leads the transactional area of the firm's environmental practice.

Crystal has almost 30 years of national environmental experience and leads ...

Crystal Kennedy
Partner
Chicago
312 580 2326

Katriina helps clients navigate challenging land use and zoning issues throughout the City of Chicago and surrounding suburbs, paving the way for successful developments.

Katriina helps clients navigate challenging land use and zoning issues thro...

Katriina McGuire
Partner
Chicago
312 580 2236

Gary uses his extensive real estate background to help developers and investors piece together their real estate projects from start to finish.

Gary uses his extensive real estate background to help developers and inves...

Gary Plotnick
Partner
St. Louis
314 552 6232

Steve advises clients on domestic and international patent applications and provides comprehensive counsel on licensing and technology transfer.

Steve advises clients on domestic and international patent applications and...

Steve Ritchey
Partner
St. Louis
314 552 6154

Paul is a highly effective litigator and regulatory compliance attorney who has resolved environmental and real estate/construction disputes in state and federal courts a...

Paul is a highly effective litigator and regulatory compliance attorney who...

Paul Sonderegger
Partner
St. Louis
314 552 6109

Peter is a nationally recognized environmental attorney who helps companies respond to major environmental incidents, navigate regulatory actions, and successfully resolv...

Peter is a nationally recognized environmental attorney who helps companies...

Peter Strassner
Partner
St. Louis
314 552 6352

Ben brings a background in electrical and computer engineering to his legal practice, which primarily focuses on the preparation and prosecution of patent applications.

Ben brings a background in electrical and computer engineering to his legal...

Ben Volk, Jr.