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Infrastructure Review and Permitting: Is Change in the Wind?


May 10, 2018
9:00 am - 5:30 pm


Arnold & Porter
601 Massachusetts Ave., NW

Washington, DC (and webcast)


This event is open to the public but a registration fee is required. Please REGISTER HERE by May 8, 2018 (in-person attendance is limited). Fees range from $150-50 ($20 for full-time students and press).

  • Webinar information will be emailed one business day prior to the event. If you are unsure if you can access the webinar via the GoToMeeting platform, please go HERE to view system requirements prior to registering.
  • CLE for both in-person and webinar will be available only for New York, California, Virginia, and Pennsylvania; however, many states have reciprocity with CA and PA. Please fill in your CLE information during registration after considering the parameters for possible credit.
  • All times noted are Eastern Time.

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Co-sponsored by Arnold & Porter and the Environmental Law Institute

In his first State of the Union address, President Trump announced a $1.5 trillion plan aimed at updating aging transportation and energy infrastructure. The Administration also sought to streamline and expedite the environmental review and permitting process for infrastructure projects under multiple environmental laws, ranging from the National Environmental Policy Act, Endangered Species Act, and Migratory Bird Treaty Act to the Clean Air and Clean Water Acts. On February 12, 2018, President Trump submitted to Congress an ambitious legislative “roadmap,” which proposes a number of far-reaching changes to the environmental review framework with a goal of shortening the process for approving projects to two years or less. Interest in improving the review process is hardly new, as the initiatives build on past efforts, such as the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation Act of 2015 (“FAST Act”). But new policies from the Council on Environmental Quality and other federal agencies are likely to draw legal challenges from environmental NGOs.

To examine these developments in a constructive, practically-oriented, and forward-looking setting, Arnold & Porter and the Environmental Law Institute are pleased to co-host a conference “Infrastructure Review and Permitting: Is Change in the Wind?” Conference attendees will hear a variety of critical perspectives across the spectrum. High level government officials, experienced practitioners representing industry and environmental NGOs, and congressional representatives will address the wide range of environmental permitting and review challenges across sectors including transportation, energy, transmission, renewables, environmental restoration, and more. Panelists will delve into the role of policy and litigation in shaping these developments over the next three years and beyond. Conference participants representing diverse backgrounds will explore areas of common ground at the intersection of good government, economic growth, and environmental protection.


8:30 am


9:00 am

Welcoming Remarks from Conference Co-Chairs: Assessing the Legal Landscape

9:30 am

Legislative Keynote: Senator Carper (D-DE), Ranking Member, Senate Environment and Public Works (invited)

10:00 am

Permitting Reform: Promise, Prospect & Perils

Nathan Frey, Partner, Regulatory Strategies and Solutions Group, Moderator


  • Ted Boling, Associate Director for National Environmental Policy Act, White House Council on Environmental Quality

  • Brian W. Boose, Associate Vice President, Regional Practice Leader, Impact Assessment and Permitting, AECOM

Permitting and Review Under ESA, MBTA and Other Wildlife Statutes

  • James Cason, Associate Deputy Secretary, Department of the Interior (invited)

  • Amy Farrell, Senior Vice President Government and Public Affairs, American Wind Energy Association (invited)


  • Mitchell Butler, Senior Principal, Natural Resources Results (invited)

  • Tim Male, Executive Director, Environmental Policy Innovation Center

11:30 am

Case Studies: The Difference Between Success & Failure in Obtaining Approvals and Building a Defensible Record

Angela Colamaria, Acting Executive Director, Federal Permitting Improvement Steering Council, Moderator (invited)

Case Study 1: Louisiana Coastal Restoration -- Johnny Bradberry, Executive Assistant to the Governor for Coastal Activities, Louisiana Governor’s Office (invited)

Case Study 2: Tappan Zee Bridge -- Paul Gallay, President and Hudson Riverkeeper, Riverkeeper


12:30 pm


1:30 pm

Keynote from the Trump Administration: Report on Year One & Prospects for Year Two

Alex Herrgott, Associate Director for Infrastructure, White House Council on Environmental Quality

2:00 pm

Environmental Review of Energy Projects

Sandra Rizzo, Partner, Arnold & Porter, Moderator

Environmental Review of Energy Transmission and Transportation

  • Emily Fisher, Vice President, Legal, Edison Electric Institute

  • Pamela Boudreau, Acting Director, Division of Pipeline Certificates, Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) (invited)

Offshore Energy Projects

  • Dr. Carolyn Heeps, Offshore Development Strategy Manager, Orsted (invited)

  • Nicolette Nye, Vice President of Communications and Industry Affairs, National Ocean Industries Association (NOIA) (invited)

3:00 pm

Transportation Infrastructure & Cooperative Federalism: View from the States

  • Albert M. Ferlo, Partner, Perkins Coie, Moderator

  • Ben Grumbles, Secretary of the Environment, Maryland (invited)

  • Sam Sankar, Executive Director and General Counsel, The Environmental Council of States (ECOS)

  • Catherine McCabe, Acting Commissioner, New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (invited)

  • Justin Wormmeester, Director, Federal Government Affairs, BNSF Railway (invited)

 4:00 pm  Break
 4:15 pm

The Decarbonization Imperative: Lowering the Barriers to Meet Solar & Wind Infrastructure Requirements

  • Michael Gerrard, Senior Counsel, Arnold & Porter, and Director, Sabin Center for Climate Change Law, Columbia Law School, Moderator

  • Mark Kalpin, Partner, Holland & Knight (invited)

  • Kit Kennedy, Director, Energy & Transportation Program, Natural Resources Defense Council

  • Jennifer Layke, Global Director, Energy, World Resources Institute (WRI) (invited)

  • Noah Shaw, General Counsel & Secretary, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA)

6-7:00 pm Reception