DS Avocats advises a prominent client base made up of French and international companies, specialising in various fields, including energy, food, electronics, mining and waste management. The practice is experienced in advising on strategic files, including matters involving new waste recycling and plastic ban regulations. The team is also sought after by leading companies for the management of crisis situations and litigation, often in relation to pollution and site contamination, with highly sensitive matters concerning a nuclear plant and a major water pollution scandal under the firm's belt. Finally, the team also advises on industrial site transfers. Practice head Patricia Savin and Yvon Martinet offer extensive experience. Also recommended are Frédéric Lévy, Grégory Gutierrez, Joanna Peltzman, Gwladys Beauchet, Safine Hadri and Laura Ceccarelli-Le Guen.
Environment in France
Other key lawyers:
Yvon Martinet; Frédéric Lévy; Grégory Gutierrez; Joanna Peltzman; Gwladys Beauchet; Safine Hadri; Laura Ceccarelli-Le Guen
Compagnie d’Aménagement des Coteaux de Gascogne (CACG)
LES CARRIERES DE MOUEN
- Advised EDF before the criminal court (Bourges) in several 1st class infringement proceedings concerning its nuclear power generation centre located in Bellevile-sur-Loire, initiated by Réseau Sortir du Nucléaire before the criminal judge against EDF for alleged non-compliance with nuclear regulations.
- Advised Business France and the French government (Presidency of the Republic) to support France’s application and attractiveness matter for the Giga Factory Tesla project in Europe., in particular advising on the articulation of authorisation procedures (town planning/environment/land) for the realisation of a very large industrial project.
- Assisted the entire community of public and private actors in the Rochelais territory to enable them to submit its application for the Caisse des dépôts et consignation’s call for proposals for a high ambition innovation territory (Territoire d’Innovation à Grande Ambition – TIGA).
Foley Hoag advises a prominent client base, including many leading names from the mining, energy, oil and gas, industrial manufacturing and waste industries. The practice handles high-profile work dealing with waste, site pollution, remediation and environmental liabilities, including the management of connected litigation. It also provides regulatory guidance and assistance with environmental authorisations pertaining to large-scale energy projects. The firm is notably advising on the closure of major hazardous waste landfill of former salt mines (STOCAMINE project). Practice head Carine Le Roy-Gleizes is highly recommended. Frédéric Scanvic, Corentin Chevallier and associate Pauline Leddet-Troadec also contribute.
Carine Le Roy-Gleizes
Other key lawyers:
Frédéric Scanvic; Corentin Chevallier; Pauline Leddet-Troadec
‘Excellent environment team; sharp skills and great responsiveness.’
‘Pauline Leddet-Troadec has unparalleled competence in environmental law and demonstrates a perfect understanding of our company’s activity. She is also very responsive.’
‘A collaborative team with a very pragmatic and operational approach to cases.’
‘Partners and associates are available and attentive to needs. They do not hesitate to inform their clients of any regulatory and legislative changes.’
Mines de potasse d’Alsace (MDPA)
- Advised ENGIE’s different business units on biodiversity issues, mining law issues, waste issues and remediation issues, including advice on low carbon urban development projects on two former industrial sites in the South of France.
- Represented RTE in an environmental dispute relating to the Noirmoutier Yeu offshore wind farm, a farm with a capacity of 500MW, securing rejection of the claims lodged by NGOs against the environmental permit issued for the project by the Administrative Appeal Court of Nantes in 2020.
Gide Loyrette Nouel A.A.R.P.I.’s Jean-Nicolas Clément leads an experienced team that is particularly active for leading companies in the industrial, engineering, oil, energy and nuclear sectors. The practice handles high-profile work in the nuclear sector, such as assisting the national agency in charge of radioactive waste management (Agence Nationale de Gestion des Déchets Radioactifs) with the landmark CIGEO project consisting in the building of an underground radioactive waste storage site. The practice also advises on various road and land development projects and provides regulatory advice such as recently on the new EU circular economy directive. Associate Alice Bouillié also deserves a mention.
Other key lawyers:
‘Responsive, competent, efficient and very pleasant team.’
‘Me Clément and Me Bouillié are excellent lawyers.’
Agence Nationale de Gestion des Déchets Radioactifs (ANDRA)
- Assisting a subsidiary of Vinci Autoroute with the defence of the environmental authorisation delivered in the context of the project of Grand Contournement Ouest of Strasbourg.
- Assisting and defending a subsidiary of Total following a claim brought by national French rail operator SNCF Réseau after a pollution of chemical origin was identified in the railway tunnel of Marseille.
- Assisting the French football club PSG with the defense of the administrative authorisations for the construction and use of its new training center in Poissy (environmental authorisation, building permits).
At Jones Day, Françoise Labrousse's practice assists many of France’s blue-chip industrial and energy companies as well as leading international corporations. The team is entrusted to deal with the most challenging matters, fo example to assist with crisis management in relation to a major industrial fire in France or to advise on high-stakes climate change risks and compliance. The practice also regularly provides key support on strategic M&A transactions involving major industrial sites and assists with major remediation issues and permit matters concerning classified facilities, including before courts. The team is also well known for its strong tort claim expertise in relation to various chemical substances such as asbestos. Also recommended are counsels Armelle Sandrin-Deforge and Elodie Simon.
Other key lawyers:
Armelle Sandrin-Deforge; Elodie Simon
Calgon Carbon Corporation
CBRE Group, Inc.
EDF (Electricité de France)
- Represented Crédit Agricole Home Loan SFH as issuer in connection with its inaugural green issuance of €1.25bn Soft Bullet Green Covered Bonds
- Advised Aurora Resurgence, a Los Angeles-based private equity fund, on environmental issues related to the sale of International Cookware Group and its subsidiaries to Kartesia.
Headed by the very experienced Joëlle Herschtel-Jornod, King & Spalding LLP’s practice represents several of the world’s largest oil and gas, mining, industrial manufacturers and waste recycling operators. The firm is handling a large caseload of high-profile matters, including major classified-site authorisation and remediation issues. The defence of clients in highly sensitive litigation, including criminal and toxic tort litigation concerning accusations of air, water and soil pollution and health damages in connection with industrial plants, is another busy line of work. The practice recently achieved two notable successes before courts in two separate criminal investigations.
LPA-CGR avocats is able to cover the full spectrum of environmental law issues thanks to its large 18-lawyer dedicated team. The practice acts for a prominent client base made up of many of France and the world’s leading industrial and energy companies. It has especially strong know-how in the field of polluted sites and soils and is assisting with remediation and liability issues pertaining to France’s largest industrial sites. Solvay and Rio Tinto are key clients. The firm also provides strategic support during major M&A transactions and on various projects. It notably handles a lot of regulatory and authorisation work and also has high-level expertise in water law and nature protection regulation. Its expertise is particularly sought after in the field of renewables energy projects ; the team has been handling strategic disputes in the sector concerning several of France’s landmark offshore wind projects. Practice head Frédérique Chaillou deserves all praises. Also highly recommended are senior counsel Vincent Sol, Fabrice Cassin, Hélène Gelas, of counsel Anne Delorme and counsel Marie-Laetitia de La Ville-Baugé.
Other key lawyers:
Fabrice Cassin, Hélène Gelas, Anne Delorme, Marie-Laetitia de La Ville-Baugé
‘Hélène Gélas and her team are extremely dedicated. They are proactive, available and reactive in their advice as well as in dispute management.’
‘Hélène Gélas is particularly involved in the defense of our projects, which she masters very well. She has a great deal of expertise and experience in the field of energy which she shares with her clients.’
‘Good knowledge of environmental law and of their clients; great speed and quality of work.’
‘Maître Frédérique Chaillou provides us with the best legal alternatives from an environmental standpoint.’
‘Excellent team, responsive, friendly, competent.’
‘Frédérique Chaillou, Anne Delorme and Sarah Becker have great skills, great availability, strong listening skills; they adapt to their interlocutors and know their cases well. It is a real pleasure to work with them.’
‘Great knowledge of our field, great expertise, great availability.’
‘Excellent responsiveness, great expertise and great quality of advice.’
‘The firm provides strong support for industrial projects.’
‘Fabrice Cassin knows how to exploit the weaknesses of analysis of the opposing parties. Hélène Gelas is not only endowed with exceptional legal finesse, but also a critical mind in terms of strategy on the conduct of industrial projects.’
‘The teams is very available and pragmatic. A solution is always there.’
‘ Fabrice Cassin and Yaël Cambus stand out for their availability and relevant advice.’
‘A very fine legal and technical expertise of environmental subjects, in particular in relation to soils, ICPE and neighborhood litigation issues.’
‘This practice demonstrates responsiveness, availability and excellent knowledge and understanding of the sector.’
‘We particularly recommend Frédérique Chaillou who has been able to build a dedicated team of a very good level, and who is constantly concerned with improving the quality of her services and the satisfaction of her customers. She demonstrates great professionalism, great finesse and subtlety in her approach, and is gifted both in terms of analytical or drafting work, strategy or negotiation. It is very pleasant to work with Frédérique Chaillou and her team, and to rely in all confidence on their opinions and their rigorous follow-up.’
‘The team remains very attentive and knows how to adapt to different requests.’
‘Hélène Gelas is an expert in environmental and energy law. Her litigation experience allows her to identify risks.’
GAS NATURAL FENOSA
PORTS DE PARIS
- Advised Casino on the vendor due diligence and the drafting of the environmental clauses in the context of the sale of 567 Leader Price stores and warehouses in France to Aldi France.
- Advised Orano on the acquisition of KSB Service Energie (KSE) and its subsidiaries KSB Service Cotumer (KSC) and the Société de Travaux et d’Ingénierie Industrielle (STII) from German group KSB.
- Successfully defended Abo Wind’s environmental permit for a wind farm facility before court.
Boutique firm Atmos Avocats combines environment law, public law and urban planning law expertise. The practice is well experienced and the counsel of choice for major waste, oil and gas and other industrial companies. It notably assists clients with regulatory issues in relation to waste recycling and handles matters related to pollution, industrial site remediation and liabilities issues. It recently provided guidance to several companies on the new waste reduction and circular economy law. Lately, the firm has also been advising on CO2 emission issues and is notably involved in several disputes on behalf of a major French city. Marie-Pierre Maître and Alexandre Moustardier co-head the practice.
Alexandre Moustardier; Marie-Pierre Maître
‘A very knowledgeable team in environment and urban planning law.’
‘Excellent environment law expertise on polluted soils and carbon emission matters. Highly responsive in dealing with complex matters. Partners in charge have exceptional expertise.’
‘Excellent understanding of issues faced by companies.’
‘Great listening skills. They quickly identify key issues and are extremely responsive’.
- Representing PLASTI RHONE ALPES, SERMACO, PAPREC GRAND IDF, SRPM, COUPAT GLOBAL SERVICES, RECYCLIC in relation to the litigious export of plastic waste to Malaysia.
Boivin & Associés
Boivin & Associés advises a longstanding client base made up of leading industrial groups on complex regulatory issues, crisis management situations and high-stakes litigation. Jean-Pierre Boivin, Manuel Pennaforte, Malik Memlouk and Steve Hercé are all highly experienced.
Other key lawyers:
Jean-Pierre Boivin; Manuel Pennaforte; Malik Memlouk; Steve Hercé
David Desforges, Avocat à la Cour
One-man boutique David Desforges, Avocat à la Cour is highly regarded. David Desforges handles a good balanced of advisory, litigation and compliance work. He is increasingly consulted to advise on new product compliance issues and was recently highly sought after by leading corporations, including blue-chip clients in the medical, IT and digital sectors, to advise on the new circular economy law. Environment and social governance issues account for a growing portion of his workload, as does criminal environmental law. Desforges' expertise also includes industrial sites, including site remediation and closing work. In the context of M&A and distressed M&A transactions, Desforges provides assistance to clients and other law firms.
‘David Desforges is widely recognised as one of the main French specialists in environmental law.’
‘David Desforges is exceptionally sharp when it comes to environment regulations. He has outstanding ability to deal with the most complex issues in a simple and straightforward way. He is also an excellent litigator before the French Administrative Courts.’
‘Responsiveness and availability. Legal precision of memorandums with no unnecessary information. Very practical angle and turned to the needs of the company.’
‘We were convinced by David Desforges’ responsiveness and availability.’
‘David Desforges is a solo practitioner, but covers all aspects of environmental law – he is excellent. In my mind, the stand-out environmental lawyer in France.’
‘David Desforges has a perfect knowledge of environmental issues. Trained in the best firms, he knows perfectly how to handle very significant cases in the context of work with other specialists. He also knows how to be efficient in medium-sized cases and is a team player with a remarkable sense of client contact.’
‘David is very responsive and agile. He is able to advise clients on all kinds of environmental issues.’
‘David Desforges is an excellent professional with whom it is very pleasant to work. David is very responsive. His advice is valuable to clients and of excellent quality. The solutions he recommends to environmental issues encountered by clients are pragmatic.’
COMMUNE DE MATOURY
- Advising Schneider Electric on the remediation of historical contaminations in the context of the sale of a site pre-empted by a local public land management company.
- Advised a private equity firm on the acquisition of a performance metals manufacturing leader with sites in France and in the EU.
- Advised a foodstuffs and bottled water leader on the set-up of a plastic bottles waste deposit system in France.
Eversheds Sutherland (France) LLP assists clients with a broad range of issues, ranging from site acquisition and remediation, to pollution and environmental liabilities and regulatory advice on greenhouse emissions and waste. Since publication, Louis-Narito Harada and Marie Coussi have left the firm.
‘The ability to deliver tailored legal solutions to clients based on current industry knowledge.’
‘ Very good responsiveness and understanding of the issues. Rigorous and clear.’
‘High expertise, responsiveness and availability were important assets in the management of our project.’
- Advised SNCF on its pre-litigation and litigation strategy in relation to contaminated land sold by SNCF, including advice on its negotiations with the counterparty, drafting a related transaction agreement and accompanying remediation operations on site.
- Advised Halliburton on the management of contaminated soil at an industrial facility sold by Halliburton in 2001 with an environmental guarantee.
- Represented Nordex in connection with several major disputes, including a claim against two municipal orders preventing the construction of a wind farm, a claim against a prefectoral decision denying the authorisation for the construction of a 12MW wind farm, and a claim against a prefectoral decision partially authorising a 18MW wind farm, but preventing the installation of a 3MW wind turbine.
FIDAL offers a large bench across various regional offices in addition to its main Parisian base. The practice is able to offer the full range of expertise, including water law, waste compliance, classified installation, remediation and industrial risk management know-how. The team assists several leading industrial companies, for example from the pharmaceutical, automotive and packaging production sectors, as well as local public entities. The practice handles a high amount of matters involving classified sites and remediation, such as the rehabilitation of a former refinery, and is involved in a crisis management case resulting from a major industrial accident. The Paris-based Christophe Puel and Thibaut Geib co-head the practice. Other key names include Julie Heraut in Rouen, Caroline Joly in Clermont-Ferrand and Louise Tschanz in Lyon. Associate Mathilde Vervynck also deserves a mention.
Christophe Puel; Thibaut Geib
Other key lawyers:
Julie Heraut; Caroline Joly; Louise Tschanz; Mathilde Vervynck
‘I can only congratulate Maitre Tschanz for her remarkable work, availability and responsiveness, rigour and professionalism.’
‘A close-knit team hyper available in times of crisis.’
‘Me Jarry is an expert, responsive and available.’
‘Listen to the client; good ability to understand the situation; relevant analysis and openmindedness.’
Fieldfisher‘s team is led by the very experienced Marie-Léonie Vergnerie who has in-depth expertise in waste compliance issues. The practice has notably been solicited by a high number of clients, including major professional federations, to advise on the implementation of the new waste circular economy requirements. Site remediation, environmental liability and M&A acquisitions of industrial sites are other core areas. Associate Vanessa Kurukgy is also a key member.
Other key lawyers:
‘Fieldfisher’s environmental law team is extremely responsive and efficient. Their availability, competence and responsiveness are an asset for our needs.’
‘Marie-Léonie Vergnerie and her team have the following qualities: efficiency, availability, expertise, knowledge of our professional sector and more particularly of our company. In addition, the quality and price ratio of their services is particularly interesting.’
‘Marie-Léonie Vergnerie’s team is responsive, very business-oriented, pragmatic and at ease in discussions with both clients and specialist firms. Marie-Léonie and her teams are also perfectly bilingual and able to interact at all stages of a case, from preparation to execution.’
‘Marie-Léonie Vergnerie is excellent in environmental law. Perfectly bilingual in English, she is pragmatic and precise, and knows how to find the right level of technicality for clients. Vanessa Kurukgy is also very fluent in English and easily integrates into multidisciplinary teams.’
- Advising various trade associations and companies on the new circular economy law adopted in February 2020.
- Assisted a client on its bidding offer over an industrial site.
Frêche & Associés
Headed by Thomas Garancher, Frêche & Associés is entrusted by a high-profile French client base, including leading names in the energy, waste and rail sectors. Several international companies are also clients. The practice handles high-profile matters, often dealing with sensitive environmental permits in connection with major nuclear and waste facilities, and major transport infrastructure projects. Disputes relating to soil pollution and sensitive matters involving waste export to foreign countries are also visible in the caseload. Hugues Vignon is also recommended.
Other key lawyers:
Herald Avocats advises several leading corporations, including an oil and gas major on several remediation and environmental liability matters. The practice mainly advises on waste and site remediation and pollution matters, including the representation in related litigation. William Azan and Christophe Bourdel form the lead duo.
William Azan; Christophe Bourdel
‘It is a pleasure to work with the team, and in particular Me Christophe Bourdel. He is extremely responsive, is always well prepared, thinks strategically and tactically and has a good sense of humour.’
- Conducted environmental compliance audits for FINANCIERE ILHD in relation to the acquisition of polluted sites belonging to Riotinto and Saint Gobain.
Allen & Overy LLP
Other key lawyers:
‘Romaric Lazerges is an excellent lawyer and very pleasant to talk to.’
Air France – KLM
- Advised Total on claims brought by several NGOs and local authorities in January 2020 before the Judicial Tribunal of Nanterre, the first climate litigation procedure against a private company in France.
- Advised Air France in the context of the adoption of the so-called eco-tax’ reform applicable to air tickets.
- Advising Engie’s Hydrogen business unit on the development and marketing, on a worldwide basis, of hydrogen from renewable energy sources.
Arnaud Cabanes; Emmanuel Guillaume
Electricité De France (EDF)
Schmolz + Bickenbach
Archer Daniels Midland
Landis & Gyr
- Advised Schmolz + Bickenbach on the recovery of five metallurgical sites operated by Asco Industries as part of Asco Industries’ bankruptcy proceedings.
- Assisted Shell with the resolution of a dispute with Lyondellbasell Holdings France SAS (Lyondellbasell).
- Advised ADM on its exclusive talks to acquire French animal nutrition solutions company Neovia, €1.535bn.
Other key lawyers:
‘Intimate knowledge of the renewables energy sector and of the industry players.’
‘Highly responsive, great experience in the renewables energy sector, highly available and spot-on advice. High-level litigation expertise.’
GROUPE EDF RENOUVELABLES
VSB ENERGIES NOUVELLES
- Assisted EDF Hydro Developement with its direct and indirect acquisition of 100% of the share capital and voting rights of Société des Forces Motrices Convert.
- Assisted Eco Delta with the litigation and development of the first onshore wind farm project of 22 wind turbines in the Var area (investment: €82m), involving a classified installations regime, incurred sanctions and two interim procedures.
‘Availability and friendliness; in particular Me Céline Cloché-Dubois.’
‘Pragmatic approach; realistic risk estimation.’
‘Excellent listening skills; ability to take into account concrete issues exposed by the company and the culture of the company into provided advice.’
- Advised Partners Group on the acquisition of an 80% equity stake in renewable energy developer, owner and operator VSB Group.
- Advised WAGA Energy and Meridiam on the development of two new WAGABOX® units, including on contracts for the construction, operation, supply of products, administrative and environmental authorisations, intellectual property, corporate and financing.
- Advised KSB on the sale of its subsidiaries KSB Service Energie (KSE), KSB Service Cotumer (KSC) and Société de Travaux et d’Ingénierie Industrielle (STII) to Orano DS – Démantèlement et Services.
‘Juliette Bril is highly responsive, very reliable and very knowledgeable. She is practical and always comes up with a solution. She is results-oriented and goes to the bottom of things.’
- Advised Nutrimaine on the sale of its industrial site in Faverolles, involving all environmental issues related to the closure of activity and the remediation works.
- Advised McDonald’s on all it environmental issues related to waste and in particular on the implementation of the new law on waste and recycling of food packaging in its restaurants.
Huglo Lepage Avocats
Corinne Lepage; Christian Huglo
- Assisted a municipality in the Paris region who was affected by environmental pollution over the course of its fight to recognise the dangers linked to emissions from incineration plants (dusts and dioxins).
- Assisted an association for the defence of victims and several victims from the Rouen region following the accident at Lubrizol.
- Acted for an association and 150 of its members on the issues caused by the LGV Bretagne-Pays de la Loire.
Lorenzo Balzano; Jocelyn Duval
AXA REAL ESTATE MANAGEMENT INVESTMENT MANAGERS
STATE OF CHAD
REGION ILE DE FRANCE
- Assisted Neoen with a legal action introduced against the building permits and the ICPE operating license for a wind farm project composed of 18 wind turbines, involving several recourses before the administrative court of Nancy or before the Conseil d’Etat.
- Advised Lafarge on a template of agreement related to the management and treatment of polluted soil and construction spoil addressed to major construction companies in connection with the Grand Paris Express project.
- Assisted RWE with the development of a wind farm project, including the drafting of templates relating to real estate issues and day-to-day assistance in connection with the public law issues during the discussions with the municipality.
‘Very compact and integrated team, with unmatched responsiveness and efficiency.’
‘Evguenia Dereviankine and her team have brought a new way of doing things; especially in the way of communicating about any new national or European regulations: information always arrives well in advance before it is in the public domain and is always completed by strong analyses of the possible consequences.’
‘Evguenia Dereviankine systematically takes into account the operational side and business expectations.’
Sébastien Mabile; Emmanuel Tordjman; François de Cambiaire
French Office for Biodiversity (OFB)
Calanques National Park
Port-Cros National Park
Ecrins National Park
INDUSTRIAL & ENVIRONMENTAL PLATEFORM SAS
National Forests Office (ONF)
Government of French Polynesia
Guyane Nature Environnement (NGO)
France Nature Environnement (NGO)
Europe Ecologie Les Verts (EELV)
Colombian and Brasilian Amazon Indigenous representative organisations (COIAB, OPIAC)
Mighty Earth (US NGO)
Notre Affaire à Tous
- Advised and represented 15 French municipalities (including Grenoble, Nanterre, Bayonne…), the region Centre Val de Loire and five NGOs (France Nature Environnement, Notre Affaire à Tous, Sherpa, Les EcoMaires & Zea) in the challenge brought against the French global oil and gas company Total for its failure to adequately respond to the climate crisis.
- Advised and represented a coalition of French, American, Colombian and Brazilian organizations (duty of vigilance).
- Represented the Forest National Office in the first proceeding following water pollutions from a gold mining company in French Guyana.
Other key lawyers: