Peter H. Weiner founded the Environment and Energy practice of Paul Hastings. He splits his time between San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Sacramento. Mr. Weiner represents renewable energy companies, real estate developers, manufacturers, waste recyclers, and consumer products companies in federal, state, and local environmental, energy, and OSHA regulatory matters, litigation, and legislation.
Energy Law: Mr. Weiner's energy practice includes representation of solar energy, wind, geothermal, and biomass companies before the CPUC, US Fish and Wildlife Service, CA Department of Fish and Wildlife, Bureau of Land Management, California Energy Commission, and county land-use regulators. Mr. Weiner has represented eleven utility-scale solar energy companies with over 10,000 MW and $35B in proposed projects, including successful litigation against permit challenges, and continues to represent new projects in the pipeline.
Environmental Law: Regulatory and Transactional issues: Mr. Weiner's broad environmental practice focuses on "brownfields" development, the California Environmental Quality Act and NEPA (environmental impact reports), land use, Superfund, the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, hazardous waste management, species and wilderness protection, Proposition 65, and environmental insurance. As the former Special Assistant to the Governor (Jerry Brown) for Toxic Substances Control, Mr. Weiner has been involved in these areas for over 35 years. With respect to litigation in this area, he has successfully represented clients in Endangered Species Act, NEPA, CEQA, Superfund, and Proposition 65 litigation. He has also represented clients before regulatory agencies at every level of government. Additionally, Mr. Weiner has been involved with legislation surrounding environmental law and has achieved significant legislative victories and regulatory changes to promote renewable energy, brownfields development, and hazardous waste recycling.
OSHA and Prevailing Wages: Mr. Weiner's OSHA practice is national in scope, including representation of employers in California, New York, North Carolina, Georgia, Kansas, Colorado, and Washington. Mr. Weiner was, at one time, an official with responsibility for the California OSHA program and taught federal OSHA law for seven years. Mr. Weiner also represents California businesses on prevailing wage matters.
Accolades and Recognitions
The Legal 500, Energy Regulation: Conventional Power (2021)
The Legal 500, Environment: Regulatory (2021)
Chambers USA, Consistently recognized for California Environment including Tier 1 Ranking
The Legal 500, Consistently recognized for Energy Regulation - Conventional Power and Environment - Regulatory and Transactional
Yale Law School, LL.B. (Member, Yale Law Journal), 1970
London School of Economics, M.A. (Knox Scholar), 1967
Harvard University, B.A. (magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa), 1966
Admitted to the California bar, various federal courts in California, and the U.S. Supreme Court.
Served in various capacities in California State government from 1975 until 1983, including Special Assistant to Governor Jerry Brown for Toxic Substances Control and Chief Deputy Director of the Department of Industrial Relations, which included the California/OSHA and prevailing wage programs. As Special Assistant to Governor Brown, participated in drafting more than 25 of the state's basic environmental laws, including the State Superfund law.
Appointee to the Unified Environmental Statute Commission.
Served on the External Advisory Committee to the Director of the Department of Toxic Substances Control.
Served on the DTSC Brownfields Revitalization Advisory Group.
Served on the Statewide Advisory Committee to the University of California Center for Occupational and Environmental Health.
Board member of several nongovernmental environmental organizations, including the Tejon Ranch Conservancy, California State Parks Foundation, Coalition for Clean Air, and Citizens for East Shore Parks.
Represented the Solar Energy Industries Association, the Large-Scale Solar Association, and the Center for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Technologies before BLM and other Department of Interior Agencies regarding PEIS development, Application Processing, Mitigation, Rents, and other issues.
Represented First Solar, Intersect Power, Clearway Energy, SunPower, Recurrent Energy, Solar Frontier, Strata Solar, Abengoa, LS Power, 8 Minute Energy, and other solar companies on environmental, land use, and energy permits and approvals on utility-scale solar energy projects totaling 8000MW in CA, NV, and AZ. Continuing representation in litigation, CAISO, CPUC, CEC, FWS, and other venues.
Represented Starwood Energy on Ten West Link transmission line between AZ and CA.
Represented a large geothermal power company on environmental and energy issues before the California Energy Commission, the California Independent System Operator, the Department of Toxic Substances Control, and other agencies regarding the operation of existing and construction of new geothermal energy production facilities (Imperial County, California).
Represented NextEra Energy in litigation and regulatory proceedings regarding the Altamont Wind Energy facility,
Representing Covanta, Olympus Power, and other biomass companies in enforcement and permitting proceedings.
Represent co-generation companies on GHG and other issues.
Development of Contaminated Property for Private Sector and Public Use
Represented the purchaser of a closed, 157-acre hazardous waste landfill (Cal-Compact) in obtaining the prospective purchase agreement and judicial consent decrees from the state, as well as the EIR for development of a residential and retail mall and the Cal-EPA agreement to allow development during clean-up (Carson, California).
Represented the owner of former landfill in Southern California in obtaining approvals to convert site to Porsche "driving experience" facility.
Representing developers purchasing or leasing former landfills for residential or commercial use, including Related (Santa Clara) and Plenitude (Carson).
Species Protection and Land Conservation
Representation of The Nature Conservancy on several matters, including advocacy for avoidance, minimization, and mitigation hierarchy.
Acquisition of a non-purposeful take permit (Golden Eagles) in construction of a solar facility.
Acquisition of low-effect habitat conservation plans for solar facilities.
Representation of Sequoia Forest Keeper in litigation against federal government.
Representation of various companies in obtaining incidental take permits (CA Dept. of Fish and Wildlife).
Negotiation of a large Conservation Easement with national land trust.
Successful defense of FWS biological opinion in a U.S. District Court.
Representation of land trust in negotiations with surrounding land owners.
Representation of a large-scale solar association in desert renewable energy conservation plan.
Representation in passing advanced mitigation and in-lieu fee law for certain solar projects.
Treatment and Recycling
Represented major hazardous waste recycling and disposal facilities, including used oil recyclers, landfills, transfer facilities, and others in obtaining and modifying permits, enforcement activities, EIRs (including successful defense in litigation), and community relations (Compton, Santa Fe Springs, Richmond, Chula Vista Emeryville, Los Angeles, Orange, Bakersfield, East Palo Alto).
Clean-up of Contaminated Property, Including Litigation
Representing City of Rialto, CA in litigation and negotiations with responsible parties which contaminated city's groundwater.
Represented Union Pacific Railroad Company regarding remediation of large former railyard facility.
Representing The Boeing Company with regard to remediation of several former aerospace facilities.
Representing The Boeing Company before LARWQCB regarding Santa Susana Field Laboratory Clean Water Act and Porter-Cologne issues.
Represented oyster growers in permitting and litigation matters.
Represented large chemical company in obtaining Title V permit from Bay Area AQMD and other air matters.
Represented a biomass company in EPA enforcement matter.
Representing electricity generators on cap and trade issues before CARB.
Represented a facility in SF6 enforcement proceeding before CARB.
Representing major chemical and manufacturing companies in regard to listing issues and various claims filed by plaintiffs regarding environmental, consumer product, and workplace exposures.
Representing companies in defending against alleged violations and compliance counseling with regards to federal and State OSHA programs. Clients include bakeries, crane maintenance companies, universities, telecommunications, waste management, dialysis clinics, movie production, software, and various other employers.