Taiga Takahashi focuses his practice on matters involving compliance with and challenges to federal, state, and local environmental and land-use regulations, as well as development approvals and entitlements.
Mr. Takahashi represents clients in a range of business sectors, including renewable energy, conventional power, commercial products, real estate development, and agriculture, in matters regarding federal, state, and local environmental and land-use laws. Mr. Takahashi was the lead associate in the litigation team that successfully defended federal agency approvals for the Tule Wind Project, San Diego County’s first utility-scale renewable wind energy project, in Protect Our Communities Foundation v. Jewell, against challenges under the National Environmental Policy Act and other federal laws.
Mr. Takahashi is one of the primary coordinators for the firm’s partnership with the National Veterans Legal Services Program, which recognized the firm as its 2016 Pro Bono Partner of the Year. Mr. Takahashi is also actively involved in other veterans’ advocacy work with the American Civil Liberties Union and was recognized by the ACLU with an Immigrant Justice Award in 2018 and in 2017 by The Daily Journal as a California Lawyer of the Year and by the National Law Journal on its Pro Bono Hot List.
During law school, Mr. Takahashi clerked at the Environmental Enforcement Section of the US Department of Justice, Environment and Natural Resources Division, and at the California Regional Office of Earthjustice. He also served on the editorial board for the California Law Review. Prior to attending law school, he served in the United States Navy as a Surface Warfare Officer and obtained a master’s degree in international relations, with a specialization in statistical analysis.
Mr. Takahashi’s representative experience includes:
- Acquisition and litigation defense of key land-use entitlements (including the environmental impact statement (EIS)) for Avangrid Renewables’ Tule Wind Project in San Diego County
- The Ocean Cleanup, in advice regarding legal compliance for the collection of free-floating marine debris in the Pacific Ocean for recycling
- Golden Door Properties, LLC (and other major agricultural operations in San Diego County), in various land-use, regulatory, and litigation matters (including under the Freedom of Information Act and California Public Records Act)
- Trial court litigation defense of key land-use entitlements (including the environmental impact report (EIR)) for a bayfront hotel in downtown San Diego
- A major real estate development company, in a permitting and transactional advice regarding commercial development in the Eastgate Technology Park in the City of San Diego
- Multiple clients in various land-use and regulatory matters related to on-site and off-site signage, for example, in local approvals (including EIR) for freeway-oriented signage for the Outlets at San Clemente
- Acquisition by Host Hotels & Resorts of W Hollywood Hotel, a 305-room hotel in Los Angeles, California
- A media, entertainment, and communication focused investment firm, on land use and real estate aspects of investment in a leading digital Out-Of-Home media company
- The City of San Diego, in the successful negotiated resolution of a decades-old land-use matter
- SoCalGas, in various land-use and regulatory matters
- Advice in real estate transactions regarding the transfer of potential environmental liabilities
- A United States Citizen, in a pro bono legal defense to terminate federal deportation proceedings
Speaker, CEQA Update,San Diego County Bar Association, 2016
- Co-author, “US Court of Appeals Affirms District Court Judgment Upholding Federal Approval of Tule Wind Project on NEPA, Migratory Bird Act, and Bald & Golden Eagle Act Claims,” Latham & Watkins Clean Energy Law Report, 2016
- Co-author, “Sixth Circuit Stays Obama Administration’s New Clean Water Rule Nationwide,” Latham & Watkins Clean Energy Law Report, 2015
- Co-author, “Climate Action Plan for San Diego County Struck Down Under CEQA,” Latham & Watkins Clean Energy Law Report, 2014
- Co-author, “EPA, Army Corps Propose New Rule to Govern Federal Clean Water Act Jurisdiction,” Latham Client Alert, 2014
- Co-author, “Federal Approval of Tule Wind Project Upheld in District Court on NEPA, Migratory Bird Act, and Bald & Golden Eagle Act Claims,” Latham & Watkins Clean Energy Law Report, 2014
- Co-author, “2013 in Renewable Energy Project Litigation,” Latham & Watkins Client Alert, 2014