Mr Paul Tanaka > Kirkland & Ellis LLP > San Francisco, United States > Lawyer Profile

Kirkland & Ellis LLP
United States
Paul Tanaka photo


Paul leads Kirkland’s Global Environmental Practice, serving as head environmental counsel for a large number of private equity firms and public companies. Paul’s clients rely on him to identify and strategically manage environmental regulatory compliance and other environmental liabilities. He is a big-picture thinker and creative problem solver that clients count on to be both commercial and practical, and to create bespoke and efficient solutions for everything from environmental crises to more routine matters of compliance and governance and all aspects of transactions.


Claremont McKenna College, B.A., Government, 1997. University of Hawai’i School of Law, J.D., 2000.

Lawyer Rankings

United States > Industry focus > Environment: transactional

(Leading lawyers)

Paul Tanaka – Kirkland & Ellis LLP

Offering coast-to-coast coverage, Kirkland & Ellis LLP houses one of the biggest environmental transactional practice groups, which handles the environmental aspects of hundreds of successful business transactions year on year. The team is often called upon to provide pre-deal counselling, and assists clients with the allocation and mitigation of environmental risks, indemnity and regulatory issues, crisis management, and environmental disclosures in the context of securities filings. It stands out for its strong track record in high-value and high-profile transactions taking place in the energy, infrastructure and industrial sectors, and is a popular destination for private equity sponsors. Its recent workload includes multi-billion dollar M&A, SPAC and financing deals in an array of environmentally sensitive industries. Based between San Francisco and Houston, Paul Tanaka is the main point of contact in the practice and counsel of choice for several private equity firms and public companies engaged in deals in the renewable energy, oil and gas and infrastructure space. Alexandra Farmer in Washington DC heads up the ESG and impact department, focusing on sustainability and climate- related regulatory requirements. Also in DC, Sara Michaelchuck Webber is noted for M&A and real estate investments, while Stefanie Gitler, who splits her time between DC and Houston, plays a key role in the handling of environmental liabilities in bankruptcy matters. In the Dallas office, Jonathan Kidwell specialises in commercial transactions and bankruptcy matters pertaining to the energy, infrastructure, chemical and mining sectors.