Matt Paulson

Partner
matt.paulson@kattenlaw.com
Austin Office
p+1.512.691.4002
f+1.512.532.9219
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Overview

Matt Paulson is head of Katten’s Environmental Aspects of Energy Production practice. He represents companies and trade organizations in the areas of environmental permitting, regulatory compliance, investigations, enforcement, litigation and crisis response, and workplace safety regulatory compliance, investigations, enforcement and litigation. He counsels clients on issues under the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, the Endangered Species Act, the National Environmental Policy Act and the Occupational Safety and Health Act and has broad experience in the areas of Superfund and Resource Conservation and Recovery Act liability.

Matt practices before the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission, the US Chemical Safety Board and the Texas State Office of Administrative Hearings, among other state and federal agencies, on environmental and workplace safety issues. He represents clients in complex matters before state and federal courts.

Working closely with state and national trade associations, Matt advises clients on legislation, litigation, permitting and regulation affecting greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Following the development of a GHG permitting program at EPA Region 6 in Texas, Matt has represented multiple permit applicants seeking to authorize GHG emission sources. He assists clients in every aspect of the process, from pre-application counseling and application development, to best available control technology analyses and cross-cutting issues such as the development of biological assessments under the Endangered Species Act and cultural resource requirements.

Before permitting, comes project scoping. Matt regularly advises clients at the early project planning stages, assisting with scoping a broad array of regulatory and permitting requirements across all media and disciplines, from environmental and safety, to US Coast Guard and US Department of Transportation requirements, to land use, local registration and licensing obligations, and other federal, state and local requirements that can affect project timing and viability.

Matt co-chairs the Katten Environmental Advisory group, an issues and benchmarking forum designed for in-house environmental professionals and counsel at member companies. The group covers key developments in the following eight substantive areas: air; water; waste and remediation; climate change; release reporting; species and resources; emergency response, investigations and compliance; and environmental litigation and enforcement. Matt also counsels clients on crisis management and prevention, including conducting internal investigations associated with allegations of criminal and civil wrongdoing, helping clients develop risk management plans and prepare for inspections and searches and coordinating responses to government investigations in the immediate aftermath of major incidents.

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Experience
  • Representation of a midstream energy company in multiple state and federal air permit applications for pipeline compressor stations and gas processing plants.
  • Representation of a pipeline company in state and federal environmental permit applications associated with construction of a new pipeline and associated compressor stations.
  • Representation of major chemical companies in greenhouse gas permit applications before the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region 6.
  • Defense of a pipeline company in multiple enforcement actions filed by the US Environmental Protection Agency and the US Department of Transportation alleging violations of the Clean Water Act for crude oil spills.
  • Representation of an energy storage company in a greenhouse gas permit application before EPA Region 6.
  • Representation of a pipeline and terminal operator in a contested case before the Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission regarding allegations under the Occupational Safety and Health Acts General Duty Clause.
  • Provision of advice and counsel to an upstream oil and gas company on source aggregation determination under the Clean Air Act.
  • Provision of advice and counsel to a midstream energy company on scoping state and federal authorizations associated with construction of a new interstate pipeline.
  • Provision of advice and counsel to an upstream energy company regarding compliance with release reporting requirements.
  • Provision of advice and counsel to a midstream energy company on consultation requirements under the Endangered Species Act and the National Historic Preservation Act associated with authorization of a pipeline.
  • Representation of the American Petroleum Institute (API) in a challenge to the EPA's greenhouse gas reporting rule for upstream oil and gas sources. American Petroleum Institute v. EPA Case No. 11-1026 (DC Circuit).
  • Representation of Texas Oil & Gas Association, et al. in a challenge to the EPA's disapproval of the Texas Qualified Facilities Program. Texas Oil and Gas Association, et al. v. EPA, Case No. 10-60459 (Fifth Circuit).
  • Provision of advice and counsel to a pipeline company regarding the Clean Water Act, Section 404 individual, nationwide and regional permits associated with work on existing pipelines and development of new pipeline segments.
  • Representation of Texas Oil & Gas Association in a challenge to the EPA's disapproval of the Texas Flexible Permits Program. State of Texas, et al. v. EPA, Case No. 10-60614 (Fifth Circuit).
  • Provision of advice and counsel to a liquefied natural gas (LNG) export company on state and federal authorizations associated with construction and operation of LNG export facilities and associated infrastructure, including pipelines and compressor stations.
  • Representation of the National Association of Manufacturers, et al. in a challenge to the EPA's greenhouse gas Tailoring Rule. The National Association of Manufacturers, et al. v. EPA, Case No. 10-1218 (DC Circuit).
  • Representation of the National Association of Manufacturers, et al. in a challenge to the EPA's Greenhouse Gas Endangerment Finding. The National Association of Manufacturers, et al. v. EPA, Case No. 10-1044 (DC Circuit).
  • Provision of advice and counsel to a pipeline company on source aggregation under the Clean Air Act associated with the development of a new pipeline segment and associated compressor stations.
  • Representation of the API and the National Petrochemical and Refiners Association in a challenge to the EPA's Mandatory Greenhouse Gas Reporting rule. American Petroleum Institute and National Petrochemical and Refiners Association v. EPA, Case No. 09-1328 (DC Circuit).
  • Representation of a pipeline and terminal operator in proceedings before the Washington State Pollution Control Hearings Board in an appeal of enforcement actions brought by the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency alleging unauthorized loading of crude oil.
  • Representation of the US Chamber of Commerce and the National Automobile Dealers Association in a challenge to the EPA's decision to grant California's request for a preemption waiver under Section 209 of the Clean Air Act to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from motor vehicles. US Chamber of Commerce and National Automobile Dealers Association v. EPA, Case No. 09-1237 (DC Circuit).
  • Representation of a major oil company in a contested enforcement action before the Texas State Office of Administrative Hearings.
  • Representation of a chemical manufacturer in an internal investigation of a process safety incident.
  • Strategic counsel to energy company on the regulation of greenhouse gases under existing laws, including the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, the Endangered Species Act and the National Environmental Policy Act.
  • Counsel to national industry trade associations; assist in comment development related to regulation of greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act.
  • Conduct special investigation into corporate safety culture, corporate safety oversight and safety management systems at BP’s five North American refineries on behalf of an independent panel of experts chaired by former US Secretary of State James A. Baker III.
  • Representation of a major refining and marketing company in an Occupational Safety and Health Administration investigation of a process safety incident.
  • Representation of ASARCO LLC in a Chapter 11 bankruptcy involving environmental claims at current and former mining and processing sites across the country.
  • Representation of an exploration and production company in an arbitration proceeding involving allegations of environmental impact associated with oilfield operations before the International Chamber of Commerce in a dispute arising out of a Middle Eastern state's attempted termination of a production sharing agreement.
  • Representation of a cement manufacturer in an internal investigation into allegations of illegal disposal of scrap tires.
  • Successful representation of an industry coalition in state and federal court in a challenge to an ozone control plan for a large urban area.
  • Representation of a major utility in a contested case hearing for a Texas Commission on Environmental Quality air quality permit seeking authorization for a pulverized coal-fired power plant.
  • Representation of a large manufacturing company in state and federal court in toxic tort and contribution/cost recovery actions arising from alleged groundwater contamination.

Recognition

Best Lawyers in America, 2014
Chambers USA, 2010-2014
Super Lawyers Rising Stars, 2007-2011
Published by Thomson Reuters
Articles
2013
Air Quality Annual Report, Environment, Energy, and Resources Law: The Year in Review 2012, American Bar Association, Section of Environment, Energy and Resources
March 1, 2009
"Regulation of Greenhouse Gases Under Section 115 of the Clean Air Act," BNA Daily Environment Report
December 1, 2008
"Climate Comes of Age," Texas Lawyer
November 1, 2008
"Seeking Certainty in the Wake of Massachusetts v. EPA: Federal and State Options for Addressing Stationary Source Greenhouse Gas Emissions," Bloomberg Corporate Law Journal
June 1, 2008
"The Polar Bear's Nose Under the Tent? Protection of the Polar Bear Under the Endangered Species Act and Regulation of Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Stationary Sources," Bloomberg Corporate Law Journal
June 1, 2008
"The Convergence of Renewed Nationalization, Rising Commodities, and 'Americanization' in International Arbitration and the Need for More Rigorous Legal and Procedural Defenses," University of Texas International Law Journal
2007
Air Quality Annual Report, Environment, Energy, and Resources Law: The Year in Review 2006, American Bar Association, Section of Environment, Energy and Resources
2006
Air Quality Annual Report, Environment, Energy, and Resources Law: The Year in Review 2005, American Bar Association, Section of Environment, Energy and Resources
Summer 2005
“Challenges in Texas Air Quality Planning: Integrating Law, Policy and Science in the Crucible of Litigation,” Co-Author, Environmental Law Journal, State Bar of Texas
Summer 2005
“The Advent of Local VOC Cap-and-Trade for Controlling Ozone,” Co-Author, Natural Resources and Environment, American Bar Association, Section of Environment, Energy and Resources
2005
Air Quality Annual Report, Environment, Energy, and Resources Law: The Year in Review 2004, American Bar Association, Section of Environment, Energy and Resources
2004
Air Quality Annual Report, Environment, Energy, and Resources Law: The Year in Review 2003, American Bar Association, Section of Environment, Energy and Resources
Speaking Engagements
April 1, 2013
Hot Air Topics, Speaker, Texas Chemical Council, Air Conservation Committee Quarterly Meeting, Houston
February 1, 2013
Clean Air Act Update, Speaker, Houston Bar Association Environmental Section Luncheon, Houston
June 1, 2012
Greenhouse Gas Permitting, Speaker, Texas Chemical Council/Association of Chemical Industry of Texas 2012 Environmental, Health and Safety Seminar, Galveston, Texas
January 2, 2012
Greenhouse Gas Litigation, Speaker, Air and Waste Management Association, Hot Air Topics Conference, Houston
October 1, 2011
EPA's Regulatory Agenda: Upstream Impacts, Speaker, National Oil and Gas Royalty Conference, Houston
May 1, 2009
EPA's Proposed Endangerment Determination: Implications for Greenhouse Gas Regulation, Speaker, American Bar Association Section of Environment, Energy and Resources Teleconference Series
February 1, 2009
The Legal Basis for Regulating CO2 Emissions, Speaker, University of Texas Carbon and Climate Change Conference, Austin, Texas
December 1, 2008
Regulation of Greenhouse Gases Under the Clean Air Act: A Square Peg in a Round Hole?, Speaker, Climate Change: Implications for Texas Business, Houston
June 1, 2008
Just When You Thought You Had It All Figured Out: Proposed Revisions to TCEQ's Compliance History Rule and Penalty Policy, Speaker, Texas Chemical Council/Association of Chemical Industry of Texas Environmental, Health and Safety Seminar, Galveston
March 2007
Lessons Learned from the BP US Refineries Independent Safety Review Process, Panelist, 2007 PSM Effective Practices Workshop, American Petroleum Institute (API) University, Houston, TX
August 2006
Siting and Permitting: ‘Nothing’s Gonna Stop Us Now,’ Co-Presenter, 18th Annual Environmental Superconference, State Bar of Texas, Austin, TX

Education

  • JD, University of Denver Sturm College of Law, with honors
  • BA, University of California, Santa Cruz

Bar Admissions

  • Colorado
  • Texas

Court Admissions

  • US Court of Appeals, Fifth Circuit
  • US Court of Appeals, District of Columbia Circuit
  • US District Court, Southern District of Texas

Recognition

2014
2010-2014
2007-2011
Published by Thomson Reuters
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Memberships

  • Air & Waste Management Association
  • American Bar Association, Section of Environment Energy and Resources
  • Austin Bar Association, Environmental Section, Co-Founder
  • Texas Bar Foundation
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