James Barrett is a partner in the Washington, D.C. office of Latham & Watkins and serves as Chair of the Washington, D.C. Environment, Land & Resources Department, and is the former Co-Chair of the firm's Environmental Regulation & Transactions Practice. His practice includes litigation, compliance counseling, and transactional work concerning a broad range of environmental laws. Mr. Barrett has also provided services to private equity and strategic company clients in hundreds of transactions covering a broad spectrum of industries, with a particular focus on the energy and oil and gas sectors, including with respect to the acquisition or divestiture of coal, gas, hydro, wind, solar, and nuclear power generation assets.
Mr. Barrett’s practice also focuses on licensing and financing of new energy projects, including liquefied natural gas (LNG) and power generation assets. His practice also includes defending clients in toxic tort matters, bringing to clients an integrated team of attorneys with the technical and litigation skills necessary to ensure that the client’s interests are fully protected in “bet the company” mass tort cases. His practice includes counseling on issues of potential liability associated with site contamination, as well as current and future regulatory requirements that may impact profitability. Mr. Barrett also counsels clients with regard to ongoing compliance with state and federal environmental laws, and assists clients with strategic planning for meeting future regulatory requirements.
Mr. Barrett has particular expertise with respect to issues arising under the Clean Air Act and various solid and hazardous waste laws, including the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act. In connection with large project financings (including most prominently with respect to non-US based infrastructured projects), Mr. Barrett has significant experience and expertise regarding the application of the “Equator Principles” and the International Finance Corporation’s Environmental and Social Performance Standards to such projects. He has published a number of articles and has spoken at conferences regarding, among other topics, environmental due diligence and the impact of new regulatory requirements affecting the power industry.