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VGC Abogados is the first boutique firm specialized in environment, energy and natural resources law.

Since its foundation, VGC has become the leading firm in environmental law in Chile. It offers highly specialized and reliable counseling to its clients, on matters that range from strategic support in project design to environmental assessment, project implementation, compliance, enforcement, and litigation, including environmental crime.

The firm’s environmental department works hand in hand with its energy and natural resources practice area which advises clients on energy, mining, water law and land use regulation matters.

VGC abides to the highest standards of professionalism that stem from an excellent, merit-based team and a healthy workplace.

Main areas of practice

Project development: this area includes counseling in (i) environmental impact assessments, including public participation and ILO 169, permitting and other regulatory matters; (ii) environmental standards, such as quality and emissions standards, identifying challenges and anticipating regulatory trends to promote compliance; (iii) environmental aspects of business transactions, involved in negotiations in which potential environmental liability or feasibility is relevant, and (iv) EPC/turnkey and BOT contracts execution, focused on the environmental and regulatory aspects.

Litigation: this area covers (i) environmental litigation, such as constitutional actions, administrative claims and civil litigation arising from environmental matters; (ii) environmental damages and civil actions before ordinary and special courts, and (iii) environmental criminal law, which includes risk assessment and litigation support.

Compliance: this area includes (i) prevention, by means of a thorough review designed for each client that identifies gaps and deviations and develops compliance strategies; (ii) compliance programs, supporting the development and execution of compliance programs before the Environmental Compliance and Enforcement Agency (Superintendencia del Medio Ambiente), and (iii) defense strategies, prior to and throughout administrative sanctioning proceedings before the Environmental Compliance and Enforcement Agency (Superintendencia del Medio Ambiente).

Energy and natural resources: the firm’s expertise includes (i) mining, related to mining operations, permitting, exploration, development of mining projects, assistance in mining-related disputes and litigation, mining concessions, land use and safety regulations; (ii) water law, specialized in underground water exploration, water rights, regularization procedures and litigation; (iii) energy, related to regulated generation, transmission and distribution facilities, as well as non-regulated clients in aspects related to electric concessions, permitting and specialized litigation, and (iv) forestry law, including permitting and advice pertaining to the Native Forest Act.

Regulation and public law: the firm has vast experience in highly regulated industries (including energy and utilities, mining and ports), regulatory processes, public law litigation, planning, licenses, permits and concessions, proceedings before the General Comptroller Office, and administrative law and regulatory practice in general.

Partners: 7

Other fee-earners: 21

Total staff: 43

Above material supplied by Vergara Galindo Correa Abogados.

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