Firm Profile > eelaw > Santiago, Chile

CP 7550029

Environment Tier 2

Dedicated environmental law boutique Eelaw fields a 'top-notch' 15-strong department that consistently assists with project-related EIAs and permits; and defends environmental and sectoral sanctioning proceedings. It is also experienced in: litigating before the environmental courts, Courts of Appeals and the Supreme Court; Chile's environmental and sectorial compliance frameworks; mining operation closures; and the chemicals and waste management sectors' regulatory framework. With over 20 years' environmental law experience, 'great lawyer' Paulina Riquelme heads the practice, which includes senior associate Astrid Francke (investment projects' environmental impact judicial strategies); and associate Jorge Brower (mining-related environmental issues). Associate Michelle Taylor was hired in September 2020 from the Environmental Prosecutor's Office, while former senior associates Sebastián Rebolledo and Carolina Häberle left the firm in late 2020 and January 2021, respectively.

Practice head(s):

Paulina Riquelme


I think this team is the best in Chile when it comes to environmental issues.

Has a deep understanding of the environmental and sectoral compliance frameworks to which a regulated community is subject, as well as the eventual consequences associated with their breach.

A great team that keeps us up to date with all the relevant advances in environmental legal matters that concern us.

Several lawyers with extensive knowledge, but they also each have their own expertise – this is quite unique, and therefore the service is top notch.

Broad knowledge of environmental legislation, with a lot of practical experience in advising on the processing of environmental permits.

Maintain very good and mutual respectful relationships with trade associations, as well as the country’s environmental and sectoral authorities.

Paulina Riquelme is a great lawyer and very recognised in the field.

Paulina Riquelme is a great leader who manages her team in a great way – always timely, very involved in the issues asked of her, assertive and very intelligent – she knows what she is talking about and this transmits great confidence.

Key clients

Sociedad Nacional de Minería

Haldeman Mining Company

Mitsubishi Corporation

Dell Chile

Cerro Negro Mining Company

Compañía Minera del Pacífico

Asociación de Generadoras de Chile

Marimaca Copper Corp


Sierra Atacama

Minera Tres Valles

Confederación de Producción y Comercio

Continental Compañía de Seguros

Minera Las Cenizas

Aguas CAP

Puerto La Lozas


Commonly, in every setting and in any class of industry, situations arise that may result in environmental problems. Particularly, at present given that regulatory requirements on productive, manufacturing, mining and energy industries are more demanding.

The world is changing rapidly at an unprecedented pace, rendering EELAW’s services crucial for a timely and suitable reaction.

We are pioneers in the field, as a firm exclusively dedicated to environmental law and at the forefront of the regulatory developments both national and international, through high level incisive legal analysis required for the development and implementation of all types of projects.

#WeAreEnvironmentalLaw, we are up-to-date with issues and offer high quality and advanced legal services to clients in a range of fields related to the sustainable use of natural resources.

We provide legal advice on environmental regulatory issues to industry associations such as the National Mining Society (SONAMI). Also, we engage as active participants in the drafting of environmental regulations providing comments and policy proposals related to these matters.

We firmly believe in the total compatibility between economic activity and the sustainable development of countries, supporting our clients in the search for paths which allow them to fulfill their goals, while complying with existing regulations and creating positive bonds with nature, the territory and the communities within.

Main areas or practice

Project development and permitting
Our approach is prevention
We provide legal advice to companies and associations of different productive sectors with the focus of offering strategic regulatory and technical-environmental point of views. At EELAW we are prepared to provide comprehensive environmental legal advice by collaborating intensively with our clients’ technical teams and professionals.

We are specialists in the elaboration of strategies for designing and undertaking the environmental impact assessment of projects, permits management and the successful implementation of projects during their life cycle stages: construction, operation and closure.

Our approach is prevention. We understand our clients’ needs and we provide advice aligned with their goals, striving to prevent and effectively minimize the risks and costs associated with the development of investment projects.

  • Environmental aspects of investment projects.
  • Environmental assessment of projects.
  • Facilitation of citizen participation processes.
  • Maritime concessions.
  • Pollution control.
  • Communities.
  • Environmental permits.
  • Closure of mining operations.
  • Due diligence.
  • Regulatory support to the energy and natural resources industry.

Environmental litigation
We are prepared to face complex scenarios
At EELAW we are acquainted with the scientific and technical issues of the industries we advise. Based on our experience and professional training, we seek to integrate various disciplines and are prepared to face complex scenarios, which allows us to deliver solid and integral defenses to our clients.

We focus on supporting and defending our clients in environmental and sectoral sanctioning proceedings, particularly before the Superintendence of the Environment, where we advised on the filing of the first Compliance Program in our country. Likewise, we also have experience in handling cases and litigating before the Environmental Courts, Courts of Appeals and the Supreme Court.

  • Defense before Environmental Courts and Ordinary Courts.
  • Defense in sanctioning administrative proceedings before various Governmental agencies.
  • General defense strategies, before the Superintendence of the Environment, General Water Bureau and the National Geology and Mining Service.
  • Drafting, filing and monitoring of Compliance Programs.
  • Prevention strategies to avoid/minimize sanctioning administrative proceedings.

Environmental compliance
Environmental compliance is prevention, reaction and adaptation
At EELAW we have deep knowledge of the environmental and sectorial compliance frameworks applicable to the regulated community, and of the possible consequences associated with non-compliances. We focus not only in the development of reactive compliance strategies, but most importantly in the design and implementation of preventive and proactive compliance strategies.

Our counseling in matters of environmental compliance allows us to deliver a strategic analysis to the work of consultants and in-house professionals, aiming at identify gaps, anticipating and preventing regulatory non-compliance scenarios, seeking that the client may understand and adapt to regulatory changes and encouraging adoption of corrective actions to address compliance gaps. We educate and train our clients, their managers, technicians and professionals, in an effort to promote a culture of environmental compliance.

  • Preventive counseling on environmental matters.
  • Regulatory risk analysis.
  • Strategic compliance planning.
  • Environmental legal strategy.
  • Compliance audits.
  • Compliance analysis of the environmental compliance performance of an activity.
  • Education and training in environmental compliance.

Regulations: Monitoring, development and trends
We actively participate in the development of environmental law
At EELAW we actively participate in the development of new environmental regulations. We have advised State agencies and private actors in the design and implementation of public policies in environmental matters and actively participate in the creation of proposals and regulatory projects. Thus, we permanently attend Congress sessions and we are always updated in the parliamentary discussions of all the relevant bills for our professional practice.

In addition, we prepare briefings, monthly reports, presentations and training for managers, professionals and technicians who work with our clients.

In this context, one of our most recent experience was our participation in the process of drafting the Tire Targets Decree for the implementation of the Extended Producer Liability Law (as known as the “REP Law”), providing the mining sector´s vision making known the challenges it faces and its experience in some valorization initiatives.

Continuous improvement is in our DNA, thereby with the purpose of maintaining the continuous education of our legal team, our lawyers attend and participate in different instances of academic discussion, contributing with a critical, constructive and practical point of view.

We keep our clients up to date with all the relevant advances in environmental legal issues, with emphasis on innovation and the development of their interests and businesses.

  • Environmental education to regulated sectors.
  • Regulatory analysis of mining industry.
  • Monitoring of regulatory changes.
  • Advice on environmental legislative and administrative issues.
  • Update on trends and regulatory processes

Pollution control and circular economy
We know the regulatory instruments, their form of compliance and its report to the authority
At EELAW we know in depth the regulatory instruments associated with pollution control of various environmental components. We advise our clients in the compliance with the associated regulations, their report to the authority, as well as in the regulatory framework applicable to the remediation of contaminated components. In this way, we provide pioneering environmental advice in the country, not only focusing on compliance, but also on supporting our clients in their efforts to raise their environmental standards.

On the other hand, our firm actively participates in the discussion of international environmental regulations, as is the case with the Minamata Convention, for which we have highly qualified lawyers.

Aware of the challenges and new regulatory trends, EELAW has paid special attention to Law No. 20,920 and the process of preparing its goal decrees, which will allow the implementation of the REP Law. Our team fully understands the relevance of this Law and its impacts on the market, so we are experts in subscribing to all those initiatives that incorporate its relevant concepts, beyond what is regulated by Law Nº 20.920, allowing us to offer avant-garde service.

Department Name Email Telephone
Paulina Riquelme +56222077896
Photo Name Position Profile
Ms Paulina Riquelme photo Ms Paulina Riquelme Founding Partner
Senior associate : Astrid Francke
Associate : Jorge Brower
Associate : Stefanie Hochstetter
Associate : Ivonne Miranda
Associate : Pedro Bravo
Associate : José Miguel Abarca
Associate : Maximiliano Alfaro
Associate : Constanza Muñoz
Associate : Michelle Taylor
Paralegal : Matías Barraza
Paralegal : Felipe Arellano
Paralegal : Diego Bascuñán
Paralegal : Valentina Fernández
Paralegal : Martín Benavides
Paralegal : Catalina Núñez
Paralegal : Javiera Rosales
Paralegal : Débora Bascur