ABA

VSB Environmental Law Section Welcomes Mike McLaughlin to the Board of Governors

July 14, 2021

Mike McLaughlin pictured at left, having fun with his colleagues at SCS Engineers.

 

Michael W. (Mike) McLaughlin has been elected to the Virginia State Bar Environmental Law Section Board of Governors. His four-year term began on July 1. Mike began his career with SCS as a summer intern as a rising sophomore at Virginia Tech. After receiving his civil (environmental) engineering degree, he received his J.D. from Washington & Lee University School of law. He has been with SCS ever since, applying his combination of law, science, and engineering expertise to environmental matters. His knowledge helps businesses and communities protect air, water, and land resources while serving the needs of their clients or constituents.

McLaughlin recalls his early career choices: “It was exciting to work on some of the earliest research projects sponsored by the then-new Environmental Protection Agency. I chose W&L Law because it had Professor Andrew (Uncas) McThenia on its faculty. Uncas was a Virginia State Water Control Board member and taught one of the few environmental law classes in the country. When I told him he was the reason I came to W&L, Uncas apologized and said he would not teach environmental law anymore—the field had too much politics involved. That was an early and important lesson for me.

“Not to worry,” says Mike. “Turner Smith of the Hunton & Williams law firm taught the environmental law class; he was one of the country’s most well-known Clean Air Act attorneys. His knowledge of the subject matter and teaching ability inspired several of us to seek careers in the field.”

Redevelopment of closed landfills is an area of special interest for Mike.

Mike is SCS Engineers’ Senior Vice President of Environmental Services. He advises developers, contractors, lenders, and land development professionals on the technical and regulatory requirements for construction on brownfield sites nationwide. Landfill redevelopment is an area of special interest. His combined engineering and legal background provides an unusual perspective on land development where hazardous wastes or other environmental challenges are present.

In addition to his extensive brownfield redevelopment experience in North America, Mike has worked at more than three dozen Superfund National Priorities List sites in 17 states and on scores of regulatory compliance, voluntary cleanup, and remediation projects for commercial, industrial, municipal, and military clients. His work for electric utilities began in 1980 with research on upgrading solid waste management and has evolved to support greenhouse gas mitigation measures and support the transition to renewable energy.

Mike’s new role with the VSB builds on his decades of experience with the American Bar Association Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources, where he is completing a two-year term as Budget Officer and a member of the Executive Committee.

Our congratulations and best wishes to Mike and the VSB!

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by Diane Samuels at 6:00 am

ABA SEER’s 50th Spring Conference on Environmental Law

April 27, 2021

The American Bar Association’s Section of Environmental, Energy, and Resources (SEER) is hosting its 50th Spring Conference virtually, April 27-30, 2021.

SCS Engineers is a Gold Sponsor of the conference, and SCS Senior Vice President of Environmental Services, Mike McLaughlin, PE, JD, is participating in the conference, which will consist of a series of webinars, networking events, expert insight panels, and more.

This virtual conference celebrates the past, examines the present, and challenges us to make the future better. This year’s conference will have a special focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion in the practice of law, and environmental justice issues.

All environmental, energy, and resources practitioners are invited to attend as the conference marks its 50th anniversary. Since 1971, the Spring Conference (once known informally as the Keystone Conference) has been a leading forum for the discussion of current issues in environmental, energy, and resources law.

Sponsorship opportunities are currently available at the Gold, Silver and 50th Anniversary Legal Leader levels.  For more information about sponsorship, contact Dana Jonusaitis.

Section members can earn up to 11 hours of CLE credit in 60-minute states—and 13.2 hours of CLE credit in 50-minute states. And, if you are unable to attend any sessions in real time, they can be viewed at a later date on demand.

Highlights of the conference include:

  • A plenary session on April 27 where experts will consider the current landscape for key rulemakings and discuss what steps the Biden Environmental Protection Agency is likely to take
  • A second plenary session will offer a primer on diversity, equity, and inclusion and environmental law.
  • A third plenary session will discuss the history of environmental justice to examine where the paths of traditional environmental law and environmental justice have diverged, current efforts to prioritize environmental justice, and practical opportunities for lawyers to contribute to solutions.
  • Panel discussions will consider environmental justice concerns and outcomes with respect to brownfields cleanups, electrification of the transportation sector, air quality violations at hazardous waste sites,
  • Answering the question: Where do the Clean Air Act and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act meet?
  • Tribal resource management practices to better prepare for and address environmental crises like wildfires.
  • Environment, Social, and Governance (ESG) trends and legal developments.
  • The U.S. Supreme Court’s 2020 County of Maui decision, with an eye toward identifying who needs a permit for discharges to groundwater and in what circumstances.
  • A special event to honor the conference’s 50th Anniversary.

Click for more information and to register

 

 

 

Posted by Laura Dorn at 8:00 am

Profitable Sustainability Initiative – PSI cuts costs for manufacturers while enhancing the resource efficiency of the supply chain

October 21, 2015

Sustainable-Profitable-manufacturing-SCS-Engineers
PSI is a comprehensive, proven program that cuts costs while enhancing the resource efficiency of the supply chain of small and midsized manufacturers.

 

The PSI Sustainability Model is a program that was developed to demonstrate the wide range of economic, social, and environmental benefits that can be realized by Wisconsin’s small and midsized manufacturers through the implementation of sustainable business practices. PSI utilizes a triple bottom line approach (sometimes referred to as “people, planet, and profits”) and a cost-benefit analysis to assess current sustainability efforts and identify opportunities for improvement. It is a comprehensive, proven program that cuts costs while enhancing the resource efficiency of the supply chain.

Projects range from replacing low-efficiency light fixtures, to reducing the use
of toxic substances and the resulting wastes, to reducing raw material use and scrap
production, to replacing old machinery with energy-efficient models, to optimizing
freight routes and shipping schedules.

Ray Tierney, PG, CEEP,  at SCS Engineers, recently published an article describing the success of the program in the ABA Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources Smart Growth and Green Buildings Committee Newsletter, Vol. 8, No. 2.

 

Click here to read the full article.

Click here to learn about Facility Energy Management services

Posted by Diane Samuels at 11:51 am