FRIDAY, MAY 5, 2023
8:15 Welcome and Introductions
8:20 Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances
F. Bryan Brice Jr., Law Offices of F. Bryan Brice Jr., Raleigh
Geoffrey R. "Geoff" Gisler, Southern Environmental Law Center, Chapel Hill
Brett Land, Baron & Budd PC, Dallas, TX
Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), often called "forever chemicals" because they do not break down like other compounds, are a class of over 10,000 manmade chemicals characterized by a carbon-fluorine bond that does not exist in nature, including PFOS, PFOA and GenX. These chemicals, widely used across innumerable industries for their waterproofing and nonstick properties, are now known to be linked to a variety of negative human health and environmental impacts. As more becomes known about the toxic nature of these chemicals and detection technology improves, there has been an expansion of PFAS-related litigation and regulation. The panel covers recent EPA guidance and the future of the regulatory landscape, as well as issues and litigation associated with drinking water and other contamination from the Dupont/Chemours Fayetteville Works manufacturing facility. The panel also includes a discussion of the ongoing multidistrict litigation consolidating over 3,000 cases regarding PFAS contamination and exposure from Aqueous Film-Forming Foams (AFFF) and firefighter turnout gear in the federal District Court for the District of South Carolina.
9:35 Dams and Dam Safety
Matthew C. "Matt" Burnette, Geosyntec Consultants, Raleigh
Josh Colley, North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality, Raleigh
Carolyn A. McLain, North Carolina Department of Justice, Raleigh
North Carolina is one of five states with more than 1,000 dams that have the potential to cause loss of life or significant property damage should they fail. State agencies, such as the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality (NCDEQ), regulate more than 80% of the nation's dams. The average age of dams included within the North Carolina Dam Safety Program Inventory is 59 years. As dams age, deterioration — such as rusting metal pipes and structural components — increases, as do repair costs. The majority of these dams are privately owned with the owner bearing the responsibility of operational and maintenance costs, as well as maintaining a safe dam compliant with regulatory requirements. Though compliance with these requirements does not absolve an owner from liability, it does establish the minimum standard to be used by owners. This minimum standard, dependent on hazard classification, can change at any time in the future due to events outside the owner's control, such as the downstream development of businesses and subdivisions. The panel provides an overview of regulatory requirements of dams subject to the North Carolina State Dam Safety Law of 1967, discusses common deficiencies of State-regulated dams, and talks through responsibility and liability when multiple responsible parties are involved, such as property owners, easement holders and Homeowner Associations (HOAs).
10:35 Emerging North Carolina Issues – Part 1
Charles S. "Charlie" Carter, Earth & Water Law, Raleigh
Taylor Jones, North Carolina Sustainable Energy Association, Raleigh
Join us for a fun, fast-paced session about emerging trends and the latest updates on the Advanced Clean Trucks Rule and the Carbon Plan. After the presentation of each of the topics, there is a question-and-answer session.
11:35 North Carolina's Environmental Future
Elizabeth S. Biser, North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality, Raleigh
Listen as the Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality provides an update on North Carolina's environmental future.
12:00 Emerging North Carolina Issues – Part 2
Amy Dzialowski, Geosyntec Consultants, Stillwater, OK
Join us for a fun, fast-paced session about emerging trends and the latest updates on the EPA Brownfields Grant program and federal funding for energy transition. After the presentation of each of the topics, there is a question-and-answer session.
12:35 Adjourn for the Day
SATURDAY, MAY 6, 2023
8:25 Announcements and Introductions
8:30 North Carolina Case Law and Legislation Updates
Grady O'Brien, North Carolina Conservation Network, Raleigh
Kalyn N. Simmons, Parker Poe Adams & Bernstein LLP, Raleigh
Hear the latest updates on case law in North Carolina state courts, as well as some relevant new opinions at the federal level. This presentation is followed by an update on North Carolina's legislative developments — hear which bills made it across to the other legislative chamber before the May 4 deadline!
9:40 Collaborations to End Environmental Injustice
Andrew A. Kasper, Assistant United States Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, Raleigh
Deborah Dicks Maxwell, NAACP, Wilmington
Sean M. Sullivan, Robinson Bradshaw, Raleigh
I. Jasmine Washington, Southern Environmental Law Center, Chapel Hill
Last year marked 40 years since the Warren County protests in North Carolina, which gave rise to the environmental justice movement. Over the past 40 years we have seen the issues of environmental justice take increasing prevalence in discussions around environmental law. In this panel our four panelists explain how they approach this issue from their respective positions in private practice, government, non-profit and community-based organizations. They highlight successes we have seen in the environmental justice movement to date, and the challenges that we have ahead.
10:55 North Carolina Coastal Update
Justin P. McCorcle, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Wilmington
Jennifer F. Mundt, NC Department of Commerce, Raleigh
I. Clark Wright Jr., Davis Hartman Wright LLP, New Bern
This is a panel discussion with attorneys from multiple points of view — the state, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the nonprofit world and private practice. They discuss timely topics related to coastal law in North Carolina such as new developments in CAMA and Corps permitting, beach nourishment-related issues, floating structures, offshore energy, oceanfront homes, and more.
12:05 Mindful Lawyers: Boosting Productivity, Well-Being and Mental Health to Create a Sustainable Life You Love†
Doug Brown, Summit Success International, Raleigh
Stressed out and feeling overwhelmed? Tired of sacrificing your health for your work? It's time to change that! Join expert attorney, educator, and entrepreneur Doug Brown, in this game-changing session. Say goodbye to burnout and hello to a happier, healthier and more fulfilling life. With Doug's expert guidance and practical strategies, learn how to manage stress, improve your mental health and boost your productivity, all while making it home for dinner. Don't be a statistic, be a trailblazer! Start your journey towards a better work-life balance.
† Indicates portion providing Substance Abuse/Mental Health credit
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