Matt Paulson

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

Matt Paulson is managing partner of Katten's Austin office, head of Katten's Environmental Aspects of Energy Production practice, and co-chair of the Katten Environmental Advisory Group. 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 discussion 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.
  • 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 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 EPA Region 6.
  • Defense of a pipeline company in multiple enforcement actions filed by the EPA 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 Act's General Duty Clause.
  • Provision of advice and counsel to an upstream oil and gas company on source aggregation determinations under the Clean Air Act.
  • 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 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 the 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 the 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).
  • Representation of the National Association of Manufacturers, et al. in a challenge to the EPA's GHG Tailoring Rule. The National Association of Manufacturers, et al. v. EPA, Case No. 10-1218 (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.
  • 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.
  • 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.

Recognition

Chambers USA, 2010-2014
Super Lawyers, 2014
Published by Thomson Reuters
Super Lawyers Rising Stars, 2007-2011
Published by Thomson Reuters
Best Lawyers in America, 2014–2015
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 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
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
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
Speaking Engagements
November 13, 2014
Speaker, Hot Air Issues - 2014 | Texas Chemical Council, Air Conservation Committee Quarterly Meeting | Houston, Texas
September 16, 2014
Speaker, The Drive to Inherently Safer Systems and Technology | Chemical Safety and Security Seminar | Houston, Texas
September 12, 2014
Speaker, Greenhouse Gas Permitting in the Wake of UARG v. EPA, | Association of Air Pollution Control Agencies Annual Meeting | Austin, Texas
April 1, 2013
Speaker, Hot Air Topics | Texas Chemical Council, Air Conservation Committee Quarterly Meeting | Houston, Texas
February 1, 2013
Speaker, Clean Air Act Update | Houston Bar Association Environmental Section Luncheon | Houston, Texas
June 1, 2012
Speaker, Greenhouse Gas Permitting | Texas Chemical Council/Association of Chemical Industry of Texas 2012 Environmental, Health and Safety Seminar | Galveston, Texas
January 2, 2012
Speaker, Greenhouse Gas Litigation | Air and Waste Management Association, Hot Air Topics Conference | Houston, Texas
October 1, 2011
Speaker, EPA's Regulatory Agenda: Upstream Impacts | National Oil and Gas Royalty Conference | Houston, Texas
February 1, 2009
Speaker, The Legal Basis for Regulating CO2 Emissions | University of Texas Carbon and Climate Change Conference | Austin, Texas
March 2007
Panelist, Lessons Learned from the BP US Refineries Independent Safety Review Process, | 2007 PSM Effective Practices Workshop, American Petroleum Institute University | Houston, Texas

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

2010-2014
2014
Published by Thomson Reuters
2007-2011
Published by Thomson Reuters
2014–2015
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Memberships

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