Dan is an environmental and commercial litigator. His expertise also includes development of solar and other renewable resources, as well as environmental impact review, compliance, enforcement and auditing.
Dan represents clients in a wide variety of disputes before federal, state and local trial and appellate courts and before administrative bodies. He regularly litigates complex Superfund matters, including throughout Long Island and along New Jersey’s Passaic River. Dan helped block the construction of a natural gas pipeline through critical environmental areas of Westchester County. He also successfully defended legal challenges to the environmental reviews of major developments including Brooklyn’s Atlantic Yards/Barclays Center, Columbia University’s expansion in Manhattanville and the renovation of Manhattan’s Seventh Regiment Armory.
Dan’s other litigation experience includes: defending a state Authority in a civil rights litigation; prevailing in a breach of contract trial for Domino Sugar; striking down guidance issued by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers as improper rulemaking; bringing RCRA endangerment claims on behalf of municipal water suppliers and building tenants; and prosecuting petroleum spill claims.
Dan has experience advising both private and public sector entities regarding the development of solar and other renewables, including a Canadian solar developer in connection with a large solar portfolio in Minnesota, and a state Authority on procuring renewable energy. He also advises a consortium of Westchester County municipalities negotiating to install solar panels on dozens of municipally-owned properties.
Dan counsels property owners, developers and municipalities on the environmental review process under the State Environmental Quality Review Act and the National Environmental Policy Act, and interfaces with consultants on preparing environmental impact statements and agency findings, including for the Barclays Center and Columbia University/Manhattanville projects, and the NASCAR Speedway formerly proposed for NYC. He also counselled a major NYC museum on historic preservation issues in connection with its renovation.
Dan advises clients regarding environmental audits and compliance, and regularly defends clients in regulatory enforcement proceedings.
He writes and lectures on solar energy, Superfund, and brownfields issues, and oversees SPR’s legal hiring and the Summer Associate Program.
Before joining SPR in 2002, Dan clerked for a United States District Court judge, and practiced as a litigator at two large NYC law firms. He has been a SPR principal since 2007.
- Ranked Attorney, Chambers & Partners, New York/Environment, 2015, 2016
- Super Lawyer for Environmental Law, Metro New York, 2013-2016
- Leading Attorney in Environmental Law, Who’s Who Legal: Environmental, 2015, 2016
- Program Co-Chair, NYS Bar Association, Environmental Law Section Annual Meeting, The Law of Solar Energy, January 2016
- New Hope Power Company: Dan represented the Company and won summary judgment in the Southern District of Florida, which enjoined the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from applying rules pertaining to its regulatory jurisdiction over certain former wetlands.
- Defended a Westchester school district from allegations that students contracted cancer due to contaminated playing field soil. SPR helped negotiate a remedial plan with the State and, after discovery was taken, no formal litigation was brought against the district.
- Columbia University Manhattanville Expansion: Helped to secure from New York’s highest court the approval of Empire State Development’s use of eminent domain to acquire land in West Harlem that is being used to support Columbia University’s campus expansion.
- Worked on the environmental review of Brooklyn’s Atlantic Yards/Barclays Center, and defended that project from various legal challenges.
- Town of Yorktown: Helped revise its Comprehensive Plan and ensure compliance with the State Environmental Quality Review Act, as well as negotiate with town residents affected by proposed rezonings to avoid litigation.
- “Demonstrating Divisibility at Sediment Megasites: Building a Case against Joint and Several Liability in Superfund Waterways,” Environmental Law in New York, August 2015 (co-author Priya Murthy)
- “Green Buildings: Emerging Laws and Practices,” Practical Law Journal, May 2011, updated November 2014 (co-author Margaret Macdonald)
- “When Regulatory Universes Collide: Environmental Regulation in the Workplace,” 13 N.Y.U. Environmental Law Journal 613, 2005 (co-author Daniel Riesel)
- “Initiatives Hit Workplace Violations With Environmental Laws,” New York Law Journal, September 7, 2005 (co-author Daniel Riesel)
- Hon. Jorge A. Solis of the United States District Court, N.D. Tex., Dallas (1999-2000)
- Sustainable Westchester, member of Board of Directors, member of Executive Committee (2015-present)
- Rye City School District, member of Facilities Committee (2015-present)
- City of Rye, NY, member of Transportation & Pedestrian Safety Committee (2016-present)
- The Junior State Foundation, member of the Alumni Committee and former member of the Board of Trustees (2010-present)