Energy, natural resources and environment in Puerto Rico

McConnell Valdés LLC

Unique in the Puerto Rico market, McConnell Valdés LLC's environmental, energy and land use practice helps its clients with federal and state permits, petroleum business transactions, renewable energy investments and due diligence. Additionally, practice head Carlos Fernández-Lugo litigates regulatory enforcement and multi-party claims. On the environmental side, vice-chair Jorge García-Díaz advises on cases involving hazardous substances, toxic torts, product liability and regulation. Lastly, the team is well versed in all aspects of zoning and planning laws and regulations, from location approvals and permits to re-zoning procedures.

Practice head(s):

Carlos Fernández-Lugo

Toro Colón Mullet, P.S.C.

The full-service environmental, energy and land use department at Toro Colón Mullet, P.S.C. is comprised of three partners, two counsels and one senior associate, each of whom specialise in specific sub-fields. As such, the multi-faceted team acts for clients in a variety of sectors, including real estate development, agriculture, banking, manufacturing and life sciences, with past clients including Total and EcoEléctrica. The team is well equipped to tackle issues of environmental risks and liabilities, regulation and permits. All attorneys in the team are also expert litigators. President of the firm Rafael Mullet-Sánchez is known for his work in planning, land use, water franchises and biomedical waste; Carlos Colón-Franceschi concentrates on clean air, hazardous waste and clean water issues; and Rafael Rivera-Yankovich advises on construction and industrial permits, brownfield and green energy projects and also contributes to legislative efforts and acts in the niche of used-oil matters.

Practice head(s):

Rafael Mullet-Sánchez

Goldman Antonetti & Córdova

With knowledge of federal and Puerto Rico statutory and regulatory requirements, the team at Goldman Antonetti & Córdova has an active environmental law practice, where it provides counselling to local, national and international clients. Specific areas of strength include environmental permitting (for example, dealing with activity registration, negotiation and preparation of permits and judicial reviews), liability assessment and negotiations, and energy law (especially renewable energy programmes). The two key lawyers who specialise in this sector are Alicia Lamboy-Mombille and Gretchen Méndez-Vilella.

O'Neill & Borges

O'Neill & Borges is committed to this field with three different, dedicated teams: the energy team, which serves solar, wind and alternative energy producers, technology, petroleum and distribution companies; the environmental team, involved in environmental due diligence, internal compliance audits, penalties and civil environmental disputes; and the zoning and land use team, which handles zoning and site approvals, permits and related litigation. Antonio Collazo-Bennazar represents clients before local and federal agencies, and Jerry Lucas Marrero provides counsel on business transactions and their impact from an environmental and land-use perspective.

Pietrantoni Méndez & Alvarez LLP

At Pietrantoni Méndez & Alvarez LLP, energy, environmental and land use law are three areas of interest that are covered by the corporate team. With a focus on alternative and renewable energy projects and an established oil and gas practice, high-calibre lawyers such as Edwin Cruz and Karina Camacho-Ojeda assist with significant projects on the island, including representing power producers in power generating projects. Compliance, regulatory and advice on permits is also highly appreciated by clients whose business is based on manufacturing, services, retail and real estate developments. The practice is also valued for its administrative and civil litigation strengths.

Coto & Associates

Coto & Associates' strategic advantage lies in its streamlined processes and accessibility, paired with its substantial experience in the oil and gas industry. Founding partner Ramón Coto-Ojeda, together with the team of counsels and associates, represents local clients (including Tropigas de Puerto Rico) and international companies (including Shell, Esso and others in the Caribbean and Latin America) in enforcement proceedings, real estate and lease negotiations.

Practice head(s):

Ramón Coto-Ojeda

DLA Piper Puerto Rico

The energy, natural resources and environment team at DLA Piper Puerto Rico is 'very accessible and demonstrates a broad understanding of environmental and permitting issues'. It acts alongside the corporate, banking, tax and litigation departments, while also being often involved in collaborations with other US and Latin America offices of the firm. The group in San Juan has an 'excellent and resourceful leader' in Miriam Figueroa and also benefits from the input of contract attorney Laura Rozas, who is a regulatory and environment specialist and demonstrates 'extensive knowledge' in the field. Since publication, Rozas has been promoted to of counsel, effective as of April 2020.

Practice head(s):

Miriam Figueroa

Testimonials

‘The DLA team is very accessible and demonstrates a broad understanding of environmental and permitting issues. They are good communicators and creatives in formulating solutions to different issues related to environmental issues and permits. The team has a good balance between experience and new resources.’

‘Laura Rozas demonstrates extensive knowledge of environmental, local and federal regulations and always presents alternatives to solve problems.’

‘Miriam Figueroa has been a great facilitator, an excellent and resourceful leader of the consulting team, and an excellent communicator.’

‘All attorneys demonstrate knowledge in their area of ​​expertise and teamwork.’

Key clients

Puerto Rico Public Private Partnership Authority

Government of Puerto Rico, Department of the Treasury

Puerto Rico Ports Authority

Work highlights

  • Representing the Puerto Rico Public-Private Partnership Authority in a high-profile PPP port project.
  • Advising the Government of Puerto Rico on how to take advantage of Opportunity Zones to promote Puerto Rico’s economic development.

Ferraiuoli LLC

Ferraiuoli LLC's Puerto Rican office in Lato Rey (San Juan) is home to a thriving environmental law, energy and land use team. Led by real estate development and permits expert Eugene Scott Amy, the department handles a wide variety of cases for clients in the real estate, waste management and pharmaceuticals sectors, and currently acts as lead counsel in a significant energy project for the revitalisation of hydroelectric power plants. Eidalia González-Tosado is a key senior associate in the team.

Practice head(s):

Eugene Scott Amy

Key clients

DSP Development, LLC

American Tower Corporation

Caribbean Produce

Parkland Fuel Corporation

Puma Energy Caribe, LLC

ARB, Inc.

Central Waste Services

Footprint Power

Air Master Awning, Inc.

Teksol Integration Group Inc.

Wartsila North America

ENERGO-PRO a.s.

Petroleum Products Supply

GCL Solar Energy

Work highlights

  • Representing DSP Development in the negotiation of several key agreements involving the development of a major luxury hotel project in the western coast of Puerto Rico.
  • Assisting Energo-Pro in the government procurement process involving a public-private partnership for the revitalisation and operation of several hydroelectric powerpPlants.