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Environmental Law Forum 2024

Apr. 10 & 11
Hilton Harrisburg

Day One: 9:00 am to 5:15 pm
Day Two: 8:30 am to 4:15 pm
12 CLE credits, incl. up to 2 Ethics

Two Days Packed with One Great Idea After Another:

Emerging Trends, Technological Innovations & Best Management Strategies

A gathering ground to attorneys in private practice and public service, engineers, consultants, professors, and scientists, this event puts you in the hot seat: learn, network, exchange, debate!

Revitalize & energize your practice—reap the benefits all year long

  • Delve into unexplored areas of environmental law
  • Seek out the advanced-level classes to revitalize your practice
  • Earmark the sessions that offer legislative and regulatory updates
  • Learn proactive strategies for balancing green against green
  • Network, network, network!
Register for the Forum Today!

Keynote Speaker: Jessica Shirley, PA DEP’s Interim Acting Secretary, opens the Forum with her outlook for the coming year.

Jessica Shirley-1Currently serving as the Interim Acting Secretary for the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (PA DEP), Jessica Shirley plays a pivotal role in the guidance of the department in its mission to protect and preserve Pennsylvania's environment while fostering sustainable and equitable practices. Jessica arrives to the role of Acting Secretary with extensive experience within the agency. Most recently, Jessica served as the Executive Deputy Secretary overseeing all programs. As the first appointed Infrastructure Implementation Coordinator at the PA DEP, Jessica oversaw the influx of federal funding supported by the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) and the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA). Jessica's previous role as Policy Director from May 2016 to April 2022 was marked by her dedication to shaping the environmental and energy policy agenda. In this position, Jessica helped to develop groundbreaking executive orders related to PFAS, climate change, energy conservation and sustainability in Commonwealth operations, and environmental justice. In her earlier role as Executive Policy Specialist, Jessica was a trusted advisor in various policy areas, including oil and gas development, air quality, climate change, energy, waste, clean water, and environmental cleanup. She also demonstrated leadership in diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts, and her representation of the Administration in discussions with key organizations showcased her influence and expertise. Jessica's educational background includes a Master's Degree in Public Administration from Pennsylvania State University and a Bachelor's Degree in Economics and Political Science from Indiana University of Pennsylvania.


The day doesn’t end when the last class lets out on Wednesday—join your colleagues at the PBA EEL Section Reception and toast the day, the year, the practice, or whatever motivates you to celebrate! We’ll provide the food and spirits; you provide the conversation and good cheer at this happy hour hot spot. 

PBA EEL SECTION ANNUAL DINNER - Make Your Reservation Here

The camaraderie lives on at the Section’s Annual Dinner, immediately following the reception on Wednesday evening—this is a “must attend” for all environmental professionals! Join the Section as they honor retired EHB Chairman, Hon. Thomas W. Renwand, with their Annual Achievement Award, catch up with old friends, and make new and lasting contacts over fabulous food and drink. Reservations must be made through PBI. Reservations canceled after April 8 will not be refunded. 


Always a highlight of the dinner, this year's award goes to Chairman Thomas W. Renwand, retired judge of the EHB. Join in recognizing his career of service to the environment and legal practice.

Environmental and Energy Law Section has named Judge Thomas W. Renwand as the recipient of the 2024 EELS Lifetime Achievement Award

10758_THOMAS W. RENWAND_SCL_5275Retired Chief Judge Thomas W. Renwand

This award recognizes the dedication of an individual who has “made an outstanding contribution to the development, improvement, or furtherance of the profession of environmental or energy law in Pennsylvania or to the Section.” Recently retired Chief Judge Thomas W. Renwand’s impressive career and service to the field of environmental and energy law in Pennsylvania exemplifies the qualities recognized by the award.

During his tenure on the Board, Judge Renwand authored precedent-setting decisions in the field of environmental and energy law. He was an expert on the Board’s Rules of Practice and Procedure and never missed a Rules Committee meeting during his entire time as Chairman. Under his chairmanship, the Board made significant advancements in its management of cases and filings, having been one of the first tribunals in the country to develop a fully electronic docket and electronic filing system. Judge Renwand ensured that the Board provided opportunities for guidance and growth for the next generation of environmental practitioners. He enjoyed working with and training new attorneys at the Board. He participated in the Section’s mentorship program and provided mentorship and guidance to the Board’s many interns throughout the years. Having been a litigator before coming to the Board, Judge Renwand was keenly aware of how stressful litigation can be. He always took into account the schedule of both the attorneys and parties when setting up a hearing and was willing to travel to the parties’ location when it would be cumbersome to make them travel to the Board’s nearest courtroom.

Wednesday's Opening Remarks/Keynote Address

The Forum welcomes back PA DEP Secretary Patrick McDonnell to kick-off events on Wednesday morning.

  • Patrick McDonnell
Patrick McDonnell Secretary, PA DEP


Tailor your experience with an agenda that offers something for everyone.

9:00 AM – 9:30 AM

Opening Remarks, Keynote Address

Jessica Shirley
Interim Acting Secretary, PA DEP

9:45 AM – 11:15 AM

Concurrent Sessions

State & Federal Environmental Issues (Environmental Policy)
Michael A. Braymer, Donna L. Travia, Joseph M. Manko (Moderator)
What will be the hottest areas of regulations and court decisions in the coming election year? Joe Manko, joined by attorneys with EPA Region III and PA DEP, returns with this year’s Issues panel and a look back at the most significant environmental developments in the state and region during 2023 and a look at what they expect to shape the practice in 2024. 

Who Fights for the Environment: Are there ‘sides’ in environmental and energy law? (ethics) (Basics)
Lisa C. McManus, Beverly H. Rampaul, Kathryn C. Urbanowicz, Andrew T. Bockis (Moderator)
We’ve all heard the tropes about someone practicing law for the “dark side” or “fighting the good fight.”  But where environmental regulation sets objective standards, is it accurate to suggest there are sides?  What about on policy issues?  Is this another side effect of our polarized culture wars?  Join this session for a discussion regarding how attorneys representing different interests view their roles and how younger attorneys can consider the issues when developing their practice.

Land Use / Zoning Update (Regulatory Tools)
Elizabeth A. Dupuis & Clifford B. Levine
Development in Pennsylvania, including most projects involving environmental issues, is governed by the Municipalities Planning Code and local zoning and land use laws. The application of local land use laws frequently involves the interplay of those laws with state and federal law. This session will review significant land use cases decided over the last year in Pennsylvania, with a focus on review standards, standing requirements, preemption doctrine and constitutional law. This area of the law is continually evolving, and this session is designed to better understand how zoning and land use laws could impact your next project. 

PFAS Technical Developments, Current Issues, and What Lawyers Need to Know about the Interconnection between Law and Science (Technical)
Colleen Costello, James Fenstermacher, Michael C. Nines
Regulation associated with PFAS at the federal and state levels, as well as litigation associated with PFAS, continues to move at a breakneck pace.  These activities, along with the constantly evolving science surrounding PFAS, have created a considerable degree of concern around potential liabilities and uncertainties related to everything from real estate transactions, impacts on manufacturing operations, and drinking water protection to name a few.  The panel will provide an overview of the current state of the science around PFAS, transactional issues around environmental due diligence, risk management, recent regulatory activity at the federal and state levels, and treatment and remediation.  

11:30 AM – 12:30 PM

Concurrent Sessions

Big Opportunities:  The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) and the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) (Environmental Policy)
Robert H. Boos, Brian Regli, Shawn W. Weis
The federal Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA) and Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) are bringing unprecedented investments to states and municipalities for traditional and nontraditional infrastructure projects including drinking water, wastewater, stormwater and nonpoint source projects, lead service line replacement, emerging contaminant mitigation, as well as tax credits for hydropower and wastewater treatment plant technology enhancements.  Representatives from PENNVEST and the Governor’s Office of Critical Infrastructure will share a summary of opportunities for funding critical infrastructure, approaches to implementation, and considerations for economic development in Pennsylvania. 

Basics of Federal and Pennsylvania Air Pollution Regulation (Basics)
Gina Falaschi Buchman & Jeffrey R. Bailey
Gain a foundational knowledge of Air practice as this panel provides an overview of the federal Clean Air Act and the Pennsylvania Air Pollution Control Act and related regulations. They will also cover air quality permitting in Pennsylvania with a focus on permitting in Allegheny and Philadelphia Counties. Become an active participant as the panel uses a case study to help you better understand stationary source permitting.

Environmental Rulemaking w/ DEP Policy Development (Regulatory Tools)
Leda J. Lacomba & Chad A. Wissinger
Recently, both the Pennsylvania Supreme Court and the Commonwealth Court have decided cases outlining the contours of judicial review of agency deference.  Each of the four most relevant cases have been decided in just the previous few years.  In conjunction with these new Pennsylvania cases, the United States Supreme Court recently heard arguments in the Loper matter – a fisheries case that might well cause a significant change to agency deference under the long-existing Chevron standard.  Since the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s most recent opinion tracks Chevron, a portion of this session will discuss potential impacts to Pennsylvania law of the pending United States Supreme Court matter, particularly in light of the new change to the composition of the state Supreme Court, and the fact that Justice Todd recently left our state court options open by specifically writing that Pennsylvania has never declared that it follows “federal agency law principles in lockstep.”  These decisions may ultimately affect how industry and the public become involved in agency’s non-regulatory policies through the advisory committee process and in reviewing and commenting on versions of policy documents, such as technical guidance documents.

Cumulative Risk Assessment for Environmental Justice (Technical)
Samantha Phillips Beers, Fernando Treviño, Mathy V. Stanislaus, Esq
This session will introduce the topic of cumulative impact assessment for environmental professionals.  The program will focus on the application of cumulative impact assessment to clarify and address environmental justice issues.  The session will conclude with an open discussion during which participants will be welcome to ask questions and/or share perspectives on the subject matter.

1:45 PM – 2:45 PM

Concurrent Sessions

Environmental Justice: From Policy to Practice (Environmental Policy)
Adam H. Cutler & Elizabeth R. Marx
Join this interactive panel to learn about Pennsylvania DEP’s newly revised Environmental Justice Policy. The panel will provide an overview of the changes recently implemented by DEP and the practical implications of the policy for the DEP permitting process and enforcement.  Panelists will also explore the potential application of the revised policy in other areas of law and policy, interactions with USEPA’s environmental justice policies and federal law, and the challenges of developing a consistent statewide approach to addressing environmental justice concerns. There will be plenty of time for participants to ask questions and engage in the discussion, so come prepared to learn from and share with colleagues in the private, government, and public interest sectors. 

Water Law (Basics)
Adam T. Duh & Matthew A. Kessler
Learn the basic concepts of Pennsylvania’s regulation of waters, including permitting requirements for industrial, sewage, and stormwater discharges. The panel will also touch on enforcement mechanisms under The Clean Streams Law for the enforcement of these requirements.  

Repowering Pennsylvania – Managing the Energy Transition (Regulatory Tools)
C. Baird Brown & Elowyn Corby
Electrification of everything now powered by fossil fuel is a leading strategy to reduce global warming.  We not only need to replace existing fossil fuel power plants with renewables and transition existing energy users, but careful estimates suggest that we will need to produce 2.5 to 3 times more power in the next 10 – 15 years than we do now. Investment in sustainable technologies is expanding dramatically but is not yet on a pace to meet the need.  Efforts are underway to expand utility scale generation and transmission, but local clean generation, energy storage and smart buildings can play a major role if policies support investment by and on behalf of energy users.  These investments also increase local resilience and empower and build wealth in local communities.  Our 100 year old energy regulatory system is struggling to accommodate these new directions. This panel explores how Pennsylvania can help lead this effort, exploring issues including current regulatory hurdles, and a new range of solutions including microgrids, community choice aggregation, and virtual power plants.

Assessing the Practical and Legal Aspects of Generative Artificial Intelligence (ethics) (Technical)
Matthew N. Beekhuizen & Vera N. Kanova
Artificial Intelligence (AI) and in particular Generative AI is rapidly evolving and has gained a lot of momentum in recent months.  From generating fun poems and graphics, to drafting briefs and predicting legal outcomes, the spectrum of possibilities and functionality is broad, but so are the risks.  This session will discuss the emergence of generative AI, explore various generative AI tools, and discuss the legal aspects and considerations of generative AI, including privacy, security, current laws, regulations, executive orders and court opinions.   

3:00 PM – 4:00 PM

Concurrent Sessions

Environmental Rights Amendment (Environmental Policy)
Thomas M. Duncan, Margaret O. Murphy, Michael Sklaroff
This session will examine the continuing evolution of Article I, Section 27 caselaw in Pennsylvania and the implementation of the amendment by the various levels of Pennsylvania government.

Foundations of Environmental Law: An Introduction to Site Remediation and Pennsylvania Act 2 (Basics)
Tyra Oliver & Candee Wilde
A primer on the foundational principles of Site Remediation and Pennsylvania’s Land Recycling Program (Act 2), this program explores general remediation principles and the basics of Act 2, ranging from Act 2’s key objectives to site criteria to the cleanup process and beyond. The presenters offer essential insights and practical learning tips to young professionals embarking on an environmental law career and to seasoned practitioners aiming to reinforce their foundational knowledge on how to navigate Act 2 and broader site remediation practices with confidence.

Managing Expectations and Emotions in Tough Cases: A Primer on Communication Skills (Regulatory Tools)
Timothy M. Fitchett, Melissa W. Marshal, Heather Mikes, DO
For years, Melissa Marshall and Tim Fitchett have worked with underserved populations who face seemingly unbeatable odds as they fight impacts of large-scale industry pollution.  Melissa & Tim will share what they've learned about how to successfully communicate with clients in ways that don't leave them feeling further disenfranchised - even when navigating tricky losses. As well as how taking time for "community legal education" leads to empowered residents and better legal outcomes. Dr. Heather Mikes will intersperse her own communication expertise, honed working in palliative care, to highlight various tips and tricks that work just as well in the legal world as they do when working with patients and their families on their worst days. 

Advancing Infrastructure Resiliency in the Face of High Impact, Low Frequency Events (Technical)
Kartik Amarnath, Devin McDougall, Daniel P. Stare, P.E. 
“Critical infrastructure” provides essential services, such as energy and water, and connects communities via transportation and communications networks. High impact, low frequency (HILF) events, such as extreme weather events or coordinated cyber/physical attacks, are becoming more common and are increasingly posing a threat to such critical infrastructure. Understanding the likely impacts from HILF events is key to protecting our infrastructure, ensuring critical systems are able to function, and supporting communities during and after an event. Presenters will discuss how their respective organizations are working toward addressing the challenges posed by HILF events, including how to prepare for, withstand, and/or respond to rare, but powerful, disruptions to current transportation and electrical system infrastructure.

4:15 PM – 5:15 PM

Concurrent Sessions

Planners’ Roundtable: Climate Conscious Lawyering Revisited (ethics) (Environmental Policy)
Alexandra C. Chiaruttini, Kevin J. Garber, John H. Herman, David G. Mandelbaum, Carol F. McCabe, Curtis C. Sullivan
In last year’s Keynote address, Prof. John Dernbach challenged all of us to consider the extent to which climate change affects ordinary legal practice. Let’s do that. What is a lawyer (in private practice, in government, or in an NGO) professionally required to do or permitted to do in advising clients, advocating on their behalf, or managing his or her office?

Oil & Gas Law (Basics)
Shannon A. DeHarde & Kathleen A. Ryan
This presentation will introduce you to basic concepts in oil and gas law, including  regulatory structure, oil and gas leasing, and cases that have shaped Pennsylvania law.

Toxicology and Human Health Risk Assessment: An Introduction with Applications (Technical)
Steven R. Boomhower & Kaye L. Guille
Learn how the science of toxicology intersects with human health risk assessment in this engaging session that touches upon sources of toxicity data (i.e., scientific studies and agency reviews), how toxicity data is used to develop regulatory standards, and how it is used to determine potential health risks from chemical exposures (i.e., human health risk assessment). Examples will be used to demonstrate the ways that toxicology and human health risk assessment can be applied to evaluate site-specific issues, such as those encountered at Brownfields or mines/smelters.   



Tailor your experience with an agenda that offers something for everyone.

8:30 AM – 10:00 AM

Concurrent Sessions

Major Federal Environmental Decisions (Enviornmental Litigation)
Prof. James R. May & Prof. Amy Sinden
Law professors Amy Sinden and James May will discuss and analyze some of the most important environmental law decisions to come down from the federal courts in the past year.

Water Law Update (Updates)
Emma H. Bast, Angela S. Bransteitter Davis, Steven T. Miano (Moderator)
Spend 90 minutes with our experienced water law practitioners and get caught up on the most critical water issues of the last year. The panel will provide a concise overview of major developments, including CWA Jurisdiction (WOTUS) and related litigation, stormwater regulation, Chesapeake Bay issues, PFOS regulation, regulation of groundwater, energy related water issues, and other regulatory and litigation developments.  This panel is designed for both experienced water practitioners and general practitioners looking to keep up to date on the latest water issues.  

Hydrogen & CCS (Climate & Sustainability)
Denise M. Brinley & Tyler Ladd
Hydrogen and carbon capture and storage are increasingly discussed as key pieces of the decarbonization puzzle for Pennsylvania. This session will examine some of the inherent opportunities and challenges of deploying these technologies in the Commonwealth. The panel will consider the environmental and economic impacts, policy considerations, current proposals, and ongoing stakeholder collaboration. 

10:15 AM – 11:15 AM

Concurrent Sessions

Attorneys Fees in Environmental Litigation: Legislative Intent and Judicial Interpretation (Environmental Litigation)
Abigail M. Jones & Brigid Landy Khuri
Join this panel for a study of the state of the law since the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s decision in Clean Air Council v. Dep’t of Envtl Prot., 289 A.3d 928 (Pa. 2023).  They will also discuss the rationale for fee shifting and potential constitutional limitations involved.

Site Remediation / Act 2 (Updates)
Caleb J. Holmes & Edward S. Stokan
This panel will summarize the year’s regulatory and case law developments in CERCLA, Pennsylvania’s Hazardous Site Cleanup Act and the Department’s Act 2, Superfund and Storage Tanks programs. Topics will include noteworthy case law, important pending cases and significant program developments important to the regulated community under the Commonwealth’s Land Recycling Program. 

Sustainable Energy: Ensuring a Reliable Energy Transition (Climate & Sustainability)
Steven Bennett & Timothy Walsh
The PJM electrical grid, spanning 13 states and Washington, D.C., has been keeping the lights on for its customers for nearly a century, and its generation fleet is expecting to undergo a historic transformation to more renewable energy sources. PJM has embraced this transition through its five-year strategy, producing intensive research and analysis on the opportunities and challenges presented by such a seismic shift. Ensuring a Reliable Energy Transition describes PJM’s role as an independent regional transmission organization in identifying challenges to the nonstop delivery of electricity – a concept we refer to simply as “reliability” – and crafting solutions to those challenges amid the ongoing shift to solar, wind and other generators that increasingly rely on renewable energy sources.

Climate Change: Thinking Globally and Acting Pennsylvanian (In the Weeds on Hot Topics)
Prof. John C. Dernbach
This program will discuss what the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Paris Agreement, and the annual conferences of the parties mean for your law practice.  Also included are the Carbon Border Adjustment Mechanism, European climate change laws, and the proliferation of non-federal carbon disclosure requirements and codes. 

11:30 AM – 12:30 PM

Concurrent Sessions

Environmental Evidence - Acquiring, Admitting, and Advocacy (Environmental Litigation)
David J. Raphael & Richard T. Watling
Electronic data and communications, from the cloud to portable devices, dominate discovery.  Laboratory analyses of environmental samples involve complex methods and controls that underpin the accuracy of analytical results.  Understanding how to present sufficient testimony necessary to authenticate information and verify processes may mean the difference between the admission or exclusion of critical evidence.    Two experienced environmental litigators will explain how to efficiently admit and effectively use scientific evidence in environmental cases.

2024 State and Federal Air Update (Updates)
Jessica D. Hunt & Jesse C. Walker
This overview zeroes in on state and federal regulatory developments and air quality litigation matters. The panel will take you through PA’s participation in the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, EPA actions pertaining to PA’s Reasonably Available Control Technology (RACT) determinations and a challenge to PA’s Heavy-Duty Diesel Engine and Truck Emission Control Program. They will also cover regulatory developments, including RACT 3 regulations and the Oil and Natural Gas VOC RACT regulations, and recent Federal developments, including EPA’s promulgation of new New Source Performance Standards regulating GHGs and VOC emissions from new and modified oil and natural gas sources (Subpart OOOOb) and new emission guidelines for the control of GHG emissions from existing oil and natural gas sources (Subpart OOOOc) and the EPA’s proposed rules regarding the reclassification of major sources of HAP emissions and applicable requirements under Title V of the Clean Air Act. 

ESG Litigation Trends (Climate & Sustainability)
Kaitlyn R. Maxwell & Lorene L. Boudreau
At its core, ESG is not a new concept and encompasses long-standing legal requirements, such as environmental protection. Yet, ESG litigation continues to evolve, potentially increasing risk relating to corporate representations about climate impact or eco-friendly products. What does ESG litigation encompass? What is the status of litigation challenging the recent SEC and California climate disclosure laws? Join our panel to discuss recent litigation trends, including greenwashing claims, environmental justice actions, investor claims relating to environmental compliance, and challenges to the new SEC climate disclosure rule and California climate disclosure statute.

Challenges to Pipeline Permits – Who Has Jurisdiction? (In the Weeds on Hot Topics)
Andrew T. Bockis & Kacy C. Manahan
Confusion abounds regarding who has jurisdiction to hear disputes regarding permits issued for natural gas pipelines. Although the EHB and state and federal courts have weighed in on the issue over the past 10 years, the issue of who has jurisdiction—and whether it is “original and exclusive” as the Natural Gas Act suggests—is not settled. Join this session for a discussion of the issue and what it means for all involved.

1:30 PM – 3:00 PM

Concurrent Sessions

EHB Panel Roundtable (Environmental Litigation)
Hon. Steven C. Beckman, Hon. Paul J. Bruder, Jr., Hon. Sarah L. Clark, Hon. Bernard A. Labuskes, Jr., Hon. Maryanne Wesdock
A Forum super session, the Environmental Hearing Board Judges convene to discuss the Board’s new electronic filing and docketing system which is expected to go live Spring 2024. Here’s your chance to meet the new judges as they also address expert discovery and revisions to the rules of practice and procedure.  

Oil & Gas Law Update (Updates)
Kurt E. Klapkowski, Lisa C. McManus, Adam Peltz
Join this panel for a review of recent oil and gas law developments impacting Pennsylvania, including an overview of Infrastructure Act and Inflation Reduction Act implementation, as well as an update on legislation, regulations, and case law. The panelists will share guidance and practice pointers to enhance your environmental and energy practice.

Climate Change Litigation:  Past, Present and Future (Climate & Sustainability)
Eleanor Breslin, Jean M. Mosites, Robert F. McKinstry, Jr.
In this climate change litigation update, the panel reviews recent activity including state and tribal litigation against the fossil fuel industry, Pennsylvania litigation relating to entry into the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative and natural gas expansion, federal Clean Air Act rulemaking litigation, and children’s trust actions raising constitutional claims against federal and state action/inaction. If time permits, they will also discuss the variety of legal theories under which claims are made, jurisdictional questions, the interaction of the administrative process (rulemaking and rulemaking petitions) and litigation, the role of experts, the state of climate science, and some of the decisions on the merits and known settlements.

PFAS Regulation in the Environment and Products (In the Weeds on Hot Topics)
Daryl D. Grable, Mark Heaney, Aaron L. Szabo
PFAS continues to be an area of focus for EPA and state agencies, as well as an ever-increasing litigation risk for companies that have manufactured, imported, processed, or otherwise used products including chemicals belonging to this sizable class of synthetic compounds. PFAS regulation and liability is a fluid, fast-developing topic in environmental law. Attend this session to learn about recent developments, including two proposed regulations released in February by the US EPA.

3:15 PM – 4:15 PM

Concurrent Sessions

Trends in State and Federal Enforcement of Environmental Crimes (Environmental Litigation)
 David Lastra & Rebecca S. Franz
The session will include an overview of EPA/DOJ criminal enforcement and the Pennsylvania Office of Attorney General’s Environmental Crimes Section. The panel will discuss environmental justice as well as other priorities at the state and federal level. The session will also include a focus on notable cases that have come from each agency recently. 

Project Objection (ethics) (Updates)
Scott A. Gould, Lori Kier, Gina M. Thomas, Beverly H. Rampaul (Moderator)
Project Objection is an interactive educational experience focused on diversity and bias in the legal profession. The program is designed to engage you in the decision-making process as you explore realistic workplace situations and contemplate the issues, viewpoints, and ethical principles at play. You become an active participant by submitting comments and voting for what you think is the optimal outcome for each situation. By the end of the session, you will have gained ideas for inclusion for your own personal life and for your firm and organization.

Climate Risk Disclosures (Climate & Sustainability)
Karen H. Davis, William J. Donohue, Jennifer A. Smokelin
Climate-related disclosures from companies are being increasingly implemented across the United States. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is soon expected to finalize its March 2022 proposed rules requiring publicly traded companies to disclose information regarding their greenhouse gas emissions and climate-related risks and how might the SEC’s final climate disclosure rules change from their initial proposal. This past October, California enacted its Climate Accountability Package, requiring private and public companies doing business in California to disclose various types of climate-related risks depending on their annual revenue; these California laws are broader in some ways than the SEC’s proposed rules. The Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) of the European Union will also impose climate-related disclosures on some U.S. companies. This session will discuss what companies may be expected to disclose in the coming years and how to prepare. 

Our Planning Team

alex chiaruttini
Alexandra C. Chiaruttini, Esq.
CAO and General Counsel
The York Water Company, York
Kevin Garber
Kevin J. Garber, Esq.
Babst Calland, Pittsburgh
John Herman
John H. Herman, Esq.
Regional Chief Counsel
PA DEP Southwest Regional Office, Pittsburgh
David Mandelbaum
David G. Mandelbaum, Esq.
Greenberg Traurig, LLP, Philadelphia

Carol McCabe
Carol F. McCabe, Esq.
Manko Gold Katcher & Fox LLP, Bala Cynwyd

Curt Sullivan
Curtis C. Sullivan, Esq.
Supervisory Counsel
PA DEP - Office of Chief Counsel, Harrisburg

 Matt Wolford
Matthew L. Wolford, Esq.
Wolford Law Firm, Erie
PBA Environmental & Energy Law Section Educational Liaison

Featured Panel, Judges of the PA Environmental Hearing Board

Steve beckman
Hon. Steven C. Beckman


Paul Bruder
Hon. Paul J. Bruder Jr.


Sarah Clark
Hon. Sarah L. Clark 

Bernie Labuskes
Hon. Bernard A. Labuskes Jr.


Maryanne Wesdock
Hon. Maryanne Wesdock


Kartik Amarnath
Mid-Atlantic Regulatory Director, Vote Solar

Jeffrey R. Bailey, Esq.

Emma H. Bast, Esq.
PennFuture - Citizens for PA’s Future 

Matthew N. Beekhuizen
Chief Pricing and Innovation Officer
Greenberg Traurig, LLP 

Samantha Beers, Esq.
Counsel, Steptoe & Johnson PLLC

Stephen Bennett
PJM Interconnection, LLC

Andrew T. Bockis, Esq.
Saul Ewing LLP 

Steven R. Boomhower Ph.D.
Senior Toxicologist

Robert H. Boos 
Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority

Lorene L. Boudreau, Esq.
Ballard Spahr LLP 

Angela S. Bransteitter, Esq.
PA DEP Office of Chief Counsel

Michael A. Braymer, Esq.
Chief Counsel PA DEP

Eleanor Breslin
Clean Air Council

Denise M. Brinley
TRC Companies, Inc.

C. Baird Brown
eco(n)law LLC

Gina Falaschi Buchman, Esq.
Babst Calland 

Elowyn Corby
Mid-Atlantic Regional Director for Vote Solar
Vote Solar Action Fund

Colleen Costello PG
Senior Vice President
Sanborn Head & Associates, Inc

Adam H. Cutler, Esq.
Fox Rothschild LLP 

Karen H. Davis, Esq.
Fox Rothschild LLP 

Shannon A. DeHarde, Esq.
Repsol Services Company

Prof. John C. Dernbach, Ret.
Widener University Commonwealth Law School

William J. Donohue, Esq.
Temple University Fox School of Business

Adam T. Duh, Esq.
Assistant Counsel

Thomas M. Duncan Esq.
Manko Gold Katcher & Fox LLP

Elizabeth A. Dupuis, Esq.
Babst Calland 

James Fenstermacher, PE
Americas Emerging Contaminants/PFAS Team Leader

Timothy M. Fitchett, Esq.
Staff Attorney, Residency Program Director
Fair Shake Environmental Legal Services

Daniel P. Stare P.E.
Gannett Fleming Inc.

Rebecca S. Franz, Esq.
Chief Deputy Attorney General
PA Office of Attorney General

Mark Heaney
Geosyntec Consultants

Scott A. Gould, Esq.
McNees Wallace & Nurick LLC 

Daryl D. Grable Esq.
Delaware Riverkeeper Network

Kaye L. Guille PE, PMP
Senior Engineer

Caleb J. Holmes, Esq.
Greenberg Traurig, LLP 

Jessica D. Hunt, Esq.
Manko Gold Katcher & Fox LLP

Abigail M. Jones, Esq.
Vice President, Legal & Policy
PennFuture - Citizens for PA’s Future 

Vera N. Kanova, Esq.
Assistant Counsel Commonwealth of Pennsylvania - Office of General Counsel

Matthew A. Kessler, Esq.
PA DEP, Southwest Office of Chief Counsel

Brigid Landy Khuri, Esq.
McNees Wallace & Nurick LLC 

Lori Kier, Esq.
Senior Water Attorney
Environmental Integrity Project

Kurt E. Klapkowski, Esq.
Deputy Secretary PA DEP, Office of Oil and Gas Management

Leda J. Lacomba, Esq.
Assistant Counsel
PA DEP Office of Chief Counsel

Tyler Ladd P.E.

David Lastra, Esq.
Regional Criminal Enforcement Counsel, US EPA Region 3

Clifford B. Levine, Esq.

Kacy C. Manahan, Esq.
Senior Attorney
Delaware Riverkeeper Network

Joseph M. Manko, Esq.
Manko Gold Katcher & Fox LLP

Melissa W. Marshall, Esq.
Mountain Watershed Association

Elizabeth R. Marx, Esq.
Pennsylvania Utility Law Project

Kaitlyn R. Maxwell, Esq.
Greenberg Traurig, LLP 

Prof. James R. May
Co-Director, Environmental Law Center
Widener University - Delaware Law School Library

Devin McDougall, Esq.
Supervising Senior Attorney, Clean Energy Program, Earthjustice

Robert B. McKinstry Jr., MSF, Esq.
Environmental and Climate Law & Consulting

Lisa C. McManus, Esq.
Vice-President, Legal, General Counsel & Secretary
Pennsylvania General Energy Company LLC

Steven T. Miano, Esq.
Hangley Aronchick Segal Pudlin & Schiller 

Heather Mikes DO
Director of Geriatrics and Palliative Care

Jean M. Mosites, Esq.
Babst Calland 

Margaret O. Murphy, Esq.
Senior Counsel
PA DEP Bureau of Regulatory Counsel

Michael C. Nines P.E., LEED AP
Technical Consultant
Manko Gold Katcher & Fox LLP

Tyra Oliver, Esq.
Assistant Counsel

Adam Peltz, Esq.
Environmental Defense Fund

Beverly H. Rampaul, Esq.
Assistant Counsel
PA DEP Office of Chief Counsel

David J. Raphael, Esq.
K & L Gates LLP 

Brian Regli Ph.D.
Executive Director, Critical Investments
Office of the Governor

Kathleen A. Ryan, Esq.
Assistant Counsel

Jessica Shirley
Interim Acting Secretary, PA DEP

Prof. Amy Sinden
Temple University Beasley School of Law

Michael Sklaroff, Esq.
Executive Director
PA Bipartisan Climate Initiative, Inc.

Jennifer A. Smokelin, Esq.
Reed Smith LLP 

Mathy V. Stanislaus, Esq
Vice Provost & Executive Director
The Environmental Collaboratory
Drexel University – Office of the Provost

Daniel P. Stare, P.E. 
Gannett Flemming

Edward S. Stokan, Esq.
Assistant Regional Counsel
PA DEP Office of Chief Counsel

Aaron L. Szabo, Esq.
Faegre Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP 

Gina M. Thomas, Esq.
Assistant Counsel, Southeast Regional Office
PA DEP Southeast Regional Counsel

Donna L. Travia, Esq.
US EPA Region 3

Fernando Treviño
Special Deputy Secretary for Environmental Justice, PA DEP

Kathryn L. Urbanowicz, Esq.
Managing Attorney, Practicum Director
Clean Air Council

Jesse C. Walker, Esq.
Assistant Regulatory Counsel

Timothy Walsh
Vice President, Development
Doral Renewables

Richard T. Watling, Esq.
Assistant Counsel
PA DEP Southwest Regional Counsel

Shawn W. Weis, Esq.
Assistant Counsel
Pennsylvania Infrastructure Investment Authority

Candee Wilde, Esq.
McCarter & English LLP 

Chad A. Wissinger, Esq.
Dentons Cohen & Grigsby


David G. Mandelbaum

The Environmental and Energy Law Section (Section) has selected David G. Mandelbaum as this year’s recipient of the Section’s Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his significant and outstanding contributions to the practice of environmental law in Pennsylvania and to the Section. The award honors David’s longstanding and impressive career in environmental law, his teaching and mentoring of future generations of environmental lawyers, and his tireless service to the Section, as an Environmental Law Forum course planner and speaker and former Section Chair.

David G. Mandelbaum Greenberg Traurig, LLP.


The camaraderie lives on at the Section’s Annual Dinner, immediately following the reception on Wednesday evening—this is a “must attend” for all environmental professionals! Join the Section as they honor David G. Mandelbaum, the recipient of their Achievement Award, catch up with old friends, and make new and lasting contacts over fabulous food and drink. Visit for more information and to register.

Reservations must be made through PBI. Reservations canceled after April 11 will not be refunded. 

Vegan and gluten free meals are available but must be requested in advance. Contact Stacey Thomas at 800-932-4637 x6298 or . 

Thank You to our Sponsors

All Forum Sponsors -


  • ARM Group LLC


  • August Mack Environmental, Inc.
  • Osman Environmental Solutions, LLC
  • Roux
  • Sanborn, Head & Associates, Inc. 
  • Terraphase Engineering, Inc


  • Ballard Spahr LLP
  • BL Companies
  • Groundwater Sciences
  • Manko Gold Katcher & Fox LLP
  • Ramboll
  • RT Environmental Services Inc.
  • Geosyntec Consultants, Inc.

Law Firm

  • Babst Calland
  • Cozen O'Connor
  • Faegre Drinker Biddle & Reath LLP
  • Fox Rothschild LLP
  • Greenberg Traurig LLP
  • Hangley Aronchick Segal Pudlin & Schiller

  • K&L Gates LLP
  • Land Air Water Legal Solutions LLC
  • MacDonald Illig Jones & Britton LLP
  • McNees Wallace & Nurick LLC
  • Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP
  • Post & Schell, P.C.

  • Saul Ewing, LLP
Register for the Forum Today!