Michael S. Kettler has a diverse practice providing timely and creative advice on all aspects of environmental law in New Jersey.  He represents national and multinational corporations, public utilities, developers, and small businesses in both litigated and transactional matters, and advises clients regarding the numerous regulatory obligations of federal and state environmental law.

Litigation

In a series of significant litigation matters, Mike represented the developer of a major utility infrastructure project to resist several challenges in the New Jersey Appellate Division to permits and approvals granted by the Pinelands Commission and NJDEP.  Our successful opposition to multiple stay requests allowed the project to be completed.  He also prosecutes and defends cost recovery actions and other litigation regarding environmental remediation costs, and represents parties subject to enforcement actions and cost recovery claims by environmental regulators.  In addition, he has represented a public utility in litigation to overcome local opposition to the siting of infrastructure.

Transactions

Mike helps clients navigate the effects on high-value corporate and real estate transactions of New Jersey's unique and strict environmental laws, such as the Industrial Site Recovery Act (ISRA), as well as New Jersey's nascent regulations concerning environmental justice and climate change.  For example, he advised the seller of a vacant brownfield site subject to remediation obligations under ISRA, the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, and the Toxic Substances Control Act, and shepherded the sale through bankruptcy court approval following the bankruptcy filing of our client's parent company. 

Regulatory Advice

Mike routinely advises clients concerning environmental regulatory and permitting matters.  In particular, he guides numerous clients through the complex and ever-changing requirements of the New Jersey site remediation program.  He also has counseled developers of offshore wind projects on coastal permitting issues and other environmental aspects of siting transmission lines and associated facilities. 

Prior Experience and Education

Before joining Riker Danzig, Mike was a litigation and environmental law associate in the New York office of an international law firm, where he litigated a major natural resource damages case brought by the government of the U.S. Virgin Islands and advised potentially responsible parties at one of the nation's largest Superfund sites. 

At Columbia Law School, Mike served on the editorial board of the Columbia Journal of Environmental Law.  He is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and a proud alumnus of the Penn Band.

Thomson Reuters has included Mike on New Jersey's "Rising Stars" list for Environmental Litigation for 2022.  See Awards and Honors Methodology

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