Mining & Extracting

With a significant presence in Arizona and California, two of the leading mining states in the United States, and our highly experienced DC-based federal regulatory practice, we litigate and counsel clients on a broad array of issues relevant to the mining industry, ranging from environmental and toxic tort to Unfair Corrupt Practices Act and international trade issues.

Steptoe attorneys have been involved in many of the cutting-edge developments in these areas of law on behalf of several leading international mining companies, in both the metals and soft-rock mining industries.

Our practice involves litigation at the trial and appellate levels, alternative dispute resolution, administrative proceedings before environmental regulatory agencies, counseling regarding environmental permits, and negotiations with regulators regarding a broad spectrum of issues, including regarding natural resource damage claims.

We have also represented mining industry trade associations in connection with international trade issues, and have substantial depth and breadth in representing mining companies in connection with Superfund sites.

Members of our mining industry team have extensive experience in dealing with technical issues relating to water contamination and hydrogeology, and our experience also extends to defending mining companies against class actions involving alleged groundwater contamination.

In addition, we have one of the preeminent toxic tort defense practices in the country, based in our Los Angeles office and featuring experienced lawyers in our DC and Phoenix offices as well.

Representative Matters

Steptoe represented an oil/mining company with respect to the permitting of the 10th largest underground zinc-copper ore body in the world.  The case involved 75 consultants, including five different hydrogeologic experts, and involved preparation of the legal case for a $750 million, 10,000 tpd project involving air emissions, surface water discharges, solid waste, and groundwater contamination issues.  The project involved two dozen permits and negotiations with federal and state officials, three counties, two towns, and three Native American communities.  In addition, new state reclamation laws and regulations were negotiated with environmental groups over a five-year period.

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