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Climate Change and Extreme Weather Events: Mitigating Risks and Emergency Response Planning

Release Reporting, Site Remediation, Permits and Emergency Authorizations

Recording of a 90-minute CLE video webinar with Q&A

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Tuesday, November 16, 2021

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE course will advise environmental counsel on the legal considerations and management of issues presented by catastrophic weather events and climate change. The panel will discuss creating emergency response plans for weather, impacts on regulatory standards and response to upset conditions, handling spill and release reporting, and/or site remediation and remedy resilience. The panel’s discussion will include best practices and practical advice for clients on mitigating the risks of environmental liability intensified by climate change and associated volatile weather events.


Hurricane Ida and its remnants are the latest weather event to have caused widespread impacts across the U.S. Industrial facilities in weather-affected areas face challenges in assessing the impact on existing environmental permits, cleaning up debris and damaged infrastructure, and restoring activities that may have been interrupted by the weather event.

Recent severe storms have forced state and municipal governments to consider issues associated with emergency response activities in connection with regulatory and guidance development. For example, some jurisdictions have instituted pollution, preparedness, and contingency (PPC) plan requirements for industrial facilities. These PPCs require planning for the impacts that flood or other natural disasters may have on a facility's potential to generate or release pollution.

Counsel for facilities should understand that the emergent conditions created by the weather events do not necessarily relieve them of the responsibility to promptly notify the appropriate regulatory authorities of any spill or release, or upset conditions associated with excess emission events caused by or related to weather events. Counsel should also consider how weather events have the potential to impact remediation activities and enforcement at contaminated sites, including sites with remedies that have achieved construction completion. Facilities tasked with cleaning up debris or repairing damage caused by the storm should consider whether their activities would require a permit. Where a permit is required, emergency authorizations may be available to facilitate expeditious response activities.

Listen as our expert panel discusses current extreme weather conditions and how these events may affect environmental regulation. The panel will address how regulated entities can prepare for potential impact on their facilities, what permits may be needed, and what proactive planning should be done.



  1. Recent trends in climate change and severe weather events
  2. Emergency planning and risk mitigation
  3. Permits
  4. Spill, release, and/or excess emission reporting
  5. Site remediation and remedy resilience
  6. Emergency authorizations
  7. Best practices and mitigating risks


The panel will address these and other key topics:

  • What are the most recent trends in environmental regulation and severe weather events?
  • How can counsel mitigate environmental risk related to climate change and resultant weather?
  • How has emergency planning and permitting been impacted by severe weather?
  • What types of spill, release, or upset/excess emission notifications are implicated with impacts to weather-damaged facilities?
  • How have remediation activities at contaminated sites been impacted by severe weather and storms and lessons learned from these examples?
  • What are the possible implications of climate change for site remediation enforcement?


Brown, Samuel
Samuel L. Brown

Hunton Andrews Kurth

A former U.S. EPA lawyer, Mr. Brown brings deep knowledge and practical experience to his clients’ environmental...  |  Read More

Wall, Gregory
Gregory R. Wall

Hunton Andrews Kurth

With over 15-years of experience in environmental law, Mr. Wall assists clients in regulatory counseling,...  |  Read More

McSweeney, David
David C. McSweeney

Hunton Andrews Kurth

Mr. McSweeney’s practice focuses on environmental, health, and safety matters, especially those involving the...  |  Read More

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