John R. Jacus

John R. Jacus


P: 303.892.7305

F: 303.893.1379




Christine Thompson

P: 303.892.7574

Admitted In

  • Colorado

John R. Jacus represents clients under all major federal and state environmental laws and regulatory programs, including the Clean Air Act, Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act (CERCLA), Clean Water Act, and National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). His practice includes environmental litigation, administrative proceedings and representation in complex business transactions. He is experienced in rulemaking and adjudicatory proceedings, permitting, litigation for cost recovery, citizen suits, environmental insurance coverage, and the judicial appeal of adverse agency actions, among other matters.

Mr. Jacus’ environmental practice has emphasized the unique legal and operational requirements applicable to the oil and gas, mining, and other natural resources industries, including new and innovative projects on the public lands. He has been heavily involved in permitting, rulemaking, and enforcement defense proceedings involving air quality regulation of stationary sources in oil and gas exploration, production, gathering, and processing, including the promulgation of emission control requirements and efforts to aggregate numerous minor sources into a single major source permit. He also has substantial transactional due diligence and compliance counseling experience with oil and gas and mining facilities. He has particular expertise in the regulation of special wastes under the RCRA and related state laws, including oil and gas exploration and production wastes, and so-called “Bevill” wastes exempt from RCRA hazardous waste regulation.

Mr. Jacus has represented clients at Superfund and RCRA sites in the Rocky Mountain region and around the country, and negotiated the favorable resolution of many disputes, including multi-party negotiations on administrative orders, alleged stipulated penalties, substantial response cost demands, and complex cost allocations. He is also well-versed in environmental auditing and voluntary disclosure, as well as voluntary cleanup under various state programs. He has represented both developers and lenders in connection with permitting and other environmental issues for different major energy projects in Colorado, including wind power and solar projects. Recent projects have included oil and gas facility air permitting in Indian Country; NEPA review of mining and oil and gas facilities for air quality impacts; and the applicability of proposed NSPS rules for specific oil and gas facilities.

Mr. Jacus has authored numerous articles on subjects ranging from Clean Air Act Developments to the transport of hazardous waste to adoption of corporate environmental policies, in various publications of the ABA, Colorado Bar Association, and Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation, among many others. He also served as Editor-in-Chief of Hazardous Waste Strategies Update, a quarterly magazine published by Shepard’s - McGraw Hill, from 1993 to 1997, and as Editorial Assistant for the American Law of Mining, Second Edition.

Mr. Jacus is former Chair of the Environmental Law Section, Colorado Bar Association (1996-1997), a member of the Rocky Mountain EHS Peer Group, and a member of the ABA Section of Environment, Energy & Resources (SEER). Mr. Jacus currently serves as SEER’s liaison to the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation and as a trustee of the foundation. He also served on SEER’s Council from 1995 to 1998 and in 2009-2010. He served on the editorial board for “Trends,” SEER’s newsletter from 1998 to 2002. Mr. Jacus was co-chair of SEER’s Annual Conference on Environmental Law (Keystone Conference) from 1993 to 1996, and served as the Environmental Program Chair of the 44th Annual Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Institute in 1998. Mr. Jacus currently is a Vice Chair on SEER’s Air Quality Committee and chairs the Colorado Association of Commerce & Industry’s Energy and Environmental Council. In 2013, he was inducted as a fellow in the American College of Environmental Lawyers.

Mr. Jacus has been listed in the International Who’s Who of Environmental Lawyers since 2004 (1st Edition, Who’s Who Legal), was recognized by Chambers USA as a Leader in Their Field in Natural Resources & Environment, has been recognized since 2006 by The Best Lawyers in America, was selected for inclusion in Colorado Super Lawyers by Thompson Reuters, was selected for inclusion in 5280 Magazine’s Top Lawyers, and earned an AV® Preeminent™ Peer Review Rating from Martindale-Hubbell. In 1997, Mr. Jacus was a recipient of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Silver Hammer Award for his work with the North Boulder Project Team in an effort to avoid CERCLA NPL listing of the Crestview neighborhood.

Mr. Jacus has served in various capacities with governance committees and on boards of various public and private schools in Boulder, Colorado. Mr. Jacus is also past Chair of the University of Colorado at Boulder Alumni Association’s Board of Directors (2003-2005) and is a former member of the University of Colorado Foundation’s Board of Trustees (2003-2007). 

Jacus, John R


University of Colorado, J.D., 1984
Stanford University, B.A., 1979

August 2015

Third Time's a Charm? EPA's Proposed Rule for CAA Source Determinations in the Oil Patch

On Tuesday, August 18, 2015, with much fanfare, EPA released pre-publication versions of several proposed rules affecting air quality permitting and regulation of sources in the oil and gas sector. While EPA's promised "methane rules" and proposed Control Technique Guidelines (CTG's) for state emissions control requirements for oil and gas sources may have grabbed the spotlight for being completely new and different among the proposals released, also included was EPA's proposed rule for making Clean Air Act (CAA) source determinations in the onshore oil and gas sector.

May 2015

Chambers USA Ranks DGS Among Top Corporate/M&A and Natural Resources & Environment Practices

The 2015 edition of the Chambers USA ranked Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP first in Colorado in the areas of Corporate/M&A and Natural Resources & Environment. Chambers USA also recognized DGS for its strong Labor & Employment and Commercial Litigation practices.

April 2015

Midstream Fundamentals

Join us for a half-day discussion of midstream fundamentals. Topics will include scope of FERC jurisdiction over gas, oil, and liquids pipelines; key provisions of gathering, processing...


February 2015

Air Quality Summit

It's hard to deny that air quality regulations are one of the most important government initiatives impacting business and industry today. To help understand what the latest and likely future air quality requirements will look like, we have assembled three panels consisting of some of the leading federal and state regulators, as well as several industry and air quality planning experts, to provide their perspectives.

January 2015

Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission Adopts Changes to Enforcement and Penalty Rules

On January 5, 2015, the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC) amended Rules 522 and 523 governing enforcement and penalties. These amendments implement House Bill 14-1356, which the legislature adopted last April.

December 2014

12 DGS Attorneys Featured in 5280's First Ever Top Lawyers

Twelve DGS attorneys have been recognized as 5280 Top Lawyers. The list, which published January 1, is made up of approximately 350 area attorneys and is based on a peer-review process and the magazine’s own research. 5280 distributes 85,000 copies per issue, far surpassing any other Colorado magazine.

Next Generation of COGCC Enforcement

Join us for a timely discussion on the new Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC) enforcement and penalty regulations, which were adopted January 5, 2015. Attendees will receive an overview of the recent regulatory changes, their fiscal implications, and responsive strategies, including voluntary disclosure, negotiating settlements, contesting violations, and using services agreements to reduce risks.

November 2014

Let's Talk Turkey About EPA's Proposed Lower Ozone Standards

Today, EPA issued its long-awaited new National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS) proposal for ground level ozone, the federal health-based standard that states must decide how to meet. The new primary 8-hour ozone NAAQS, which EPA is proposing to set at between 65 and 70 parts per billion (ppb), represents a significant tightening of the standard from the current level of 75 ppb and would put a significant portion of the country in non-attainment. The agency is also taking comment on setting the primary NAAQS as low as 60 ppb, which could drastically expand non-attainment designations even further. The agency has also proposed tightening the secondary ozone standard, which exists to protect “public welfare” (as opposed to public health) values such as soils, water, crops, wildlife, weather, economic values, visibility and climate, and personal well-being.

Today’s proposal marks yet another substantial federal air quality action by EPA in a year that has seen, perhaps, as many significant air quality rules or court decisions as any on record. These include the U.S. Supreme Court’s validation of EPA’s Cross State Air Pollution Rule (CSPR), the Court’s ruling on the extent of EPA’s authority to regulate CO2 from stationary sources in the Utility Air Regulatory Group case, EPA’s proposed Clean Power Plan focusing on CO2 reductions from coal-fired power plants, the proposed reversal of EPA’s policy on affirmative defenses for startups, shutdowns, and malfunctions; and the Supreme Court’s recent acceptance of certiorari to review the legality of the Mercury Air Toxics Standard (MATS). Of these, it is perhaps the ozone NAAQS that poses the most serious and important consequences for businesses as well as state regulators, and even the EPA itself. A further lowering of the ozone NAAQS (it was last lowered in 2008) will significantly impact nearly every industrial sector, necessitating, in our view, widespread participation in EPA’s notice and comment process. Comments will be due 90 days after publication of the proposal in the Federal Register; although, given the significance and breadth of the rule’s potential impacts, it is possible the comment deadline will be extended. A final rule is expected by October, 2015.


October 2014

A Review of Significant Air Quality Litigation

Rocky Mountain States Section Air & Waste Management Association Air Quality Conference

DOT Proposes Series of Rules Targeting Rail Transport of Crude Oil and Ethanol, Citing Increased Traffic and Recent High-Profile Accidents

The Department of Transportation (DOT), through the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) and Federal Railroad Administration (FRA), has recently proposed a series of rules as part of its comprehensive effort to strengthen safety standards for rail transport of crude oil and ethanol, as well as other flammable liquids.

June 2014

The Supreme Court "Tailors" EPA's GHG Permitting Program

Yesterday, Justice Scalia, writing for a majority of the United States Supreme Court, invalidated EPA's greenhouse-gas (GHG) regulations to the extent they require stationary sources to obtain a Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) and/or Title V major source permit based solely on the source's GHG emissions. The Court, however, also validated EPA's extension of "best available control technology" (BACT) requirements to GHG emissions at sources already subject to PSD requirements based on criteria pollutant emissions (so-called "PSD-anyway" sources).

Chambers USA Ranks DGS at the Top Corporate/M&A and Natural Resources & Environment Practices

The 2014 edition of the Chambers USA ranked Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP first in Colorado in the areas of Corporate/M&A and Natural Resources & Environment. Chambers USA also recognized DGS for its strong Labor & Employment and Commercial Litigation practices.

EPA to Hold Public Hearing in Denver on Proposed General Permits and Permits by Rule for Minor Source NSR Permitting in Indian Country

On March 12, 2014, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will hold a public hearing in Denver, Colorado on the proposed "General Permits and Permits by Rule for the Federal Minor New Source Review Program in Indian Country," which the agency initially released on December 12, 2013, and published in the Federal Register on January 14, 2014 (79 Fed. Reg. 2546).

Colorado's Greenhouse Gas Inventory Update: A Work in Progress

On December 11, 2013, the Colorado Department of Public Health (CDPHE) issued its Draft Colorado Greenhouse Gas Inventory – 2013 Update (the GHG Update); a report required every five years. The GHG Update summarizes all of Colorado's GHG emissions and sinks from 1990 to 2030. To generate the GHG Update, CDPHE used the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA's) model for assigning emission factors and making emission projections.

December 2013

Climate Action Plan Seminar

Please join us for a well-informed and balanced roundtable discussion of the challenges and opportunities posed by climate change for the Rocky Mountain West from three different perspectives, including, Shaun McGrath, Regional Administrator of the EPA, Region 8; Kathleen Sgamma, Vice President of Government & Public Affairs, Western Energy Alliance; and Amelia Peterson, Senior Research Associate, Governors' Climate & Forests Task Force, University of Colorado Law School Research Faculty.

The Winds of Climate Change are Blowing

The winds of legal, regulatory, and policy responses to climate change are blowing perhaps more than ever before. The consequences for all stakeholders, and particularly those companies operating in the energy sector, are significant.

October 2013

Where There's Smoke There's Fire? – How it Just Got Harder for Colorado Oil and Gas Operators to Meet Air Emissions Requirements

The Air Pollution Control Division has again revised its P.S. Memo 10-02: "Oil & Gas Atmospheric Condensate Storage Tank Batteries System Reporting Guidance" to make several significant changes regarding reportable air emissions under Air Quality Control Commission Regulation No. 7, § XII.

August 2013

Transport of Hazardous Waste

ABA RCRA Practice Manual

This manual clearly explains this dynamic law, its background, regulatory structure and procedures, and the implications RCRA has for your client or company. Chapters are written by an impressive roster of environmental lawyers who practice extensively in this area, and the authors offer practical suggestions and guidance to minimize the risk of penalty and to soften the blow when liability cannot be avoided.


Colorado Considering Significant Revisions to Emission Control, Permitting, and Reporting Requirements for the Oil and Gas Industry

At the February 28, 2013 Stakeholder Meeting, the Colorado Air Pollution Control Division (Division) revealed a suite of revisions it is considering to Air Quality Control Commission Regulation No. 7, in the form of significant new and expanded control options for Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs), Greenhouse Gases (GHGs), and other hydrocarbon emissions from oil and gas facilities. The Division anticipates a formal rulemaking process to begin in November, 2013. 

EPA Proposes Significant Changes to its Startup, Shutdown, and Malfunction Air Rules

On February 22, 2013, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a sweeping proposal regarding the treatment of excess emissions in state rules from sources during periods of startup, shutdown, and malfunction (SSM). The proposal responds to a petition for rulemaking filed in 2011 by the Sierra Club, and promises to fundamentally alter the way most states, including Colorado and North Dakota, treat SSM events in their State Implementation Plans (SIP). Comments on EPA’s proposal are currently due March 25, 2013. 

February 2013

Developments and Trends in Clean Air Act Source "Aggregation"

Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation Special Institute: Air Quality Issues Affecting Oil, Gas, and Mining Development in the West

October 2012

COGCC’s “Setback” Rulemaking Means More Regulation for the Oil and Gas Industry

The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC) has embarked on a significant new rulemaking that promises to have big impacts on oil and gas operations in Colorado. On September 21, 2012, the COGCC rolled out a conceptual outline of potential amendments to the existing COGCC setback rules, and on October 1, the Commission gave the go ahead to begin a rulemaking to amend the setback rules. Proposed rules were published October 15.

September 2012

DGS Partner John Jacus to Speak at ABA SEER Fall Meeting

Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP partner John Jacus is serving on the planning committee and as a panel moderator for the American Bar Association (ABA) Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources (SEER) Fall Meeting.  

Air Quality Impacts of Shale Development

Proof of Causation in the Courts vs. Proving a Negative in the Court of Public Opinion

This two-part Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP breakfast briefing series in September and October will focus on the cutting edge of environmental controversy surrounding shale development for oil and gas production, addressing a number of significant developments in the courts and across the country regarding air quality impacts from shale development involving hydrofracturing or "fracking."

Sixth Circuit Strikes Down EPA's Clean Air Act Source Aggregation Approach

In a 2-1 opinion issued August 7, 2012, in the case of Summit Petroleum Corp v. EPA, No. 10-4572, slip op. (6th Cir. Aug. 7, 2012), the Sixth Circuit appears to have struck a substantial blow to the U.S.Environmental Protection Agency's ("EPA" or "the Agency") approach to single source aggregation under the Clean Air Act ("CAA").

July 2012

DGS Partner John Jacus to Speak at Rocky Mountain Energy Epicenter

Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP partner John Jacus will be speaking at the 24th Annual Rocky Mountain Energy Epicenter August 13-16 at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver.

EPA Finalizes Clean Air Act New Source Performance Standards (NSPS) and National Emission Standards for Hazardous Air Pollutants (NESHAP) Applicable to the Oil and Gas Industry

On April 17, 2012, EPA finalized its heavily anticipated revisions to the NSPS and NESHAP applicable to oil and gas production facilities (i.e., upstream and processing). The final rule revises existing requirements (primarily applicable to gas processing facilities) and also imposes new requirements to address emissions for several processes and pieces of equipment used in the oil and gas industry that have not previously been subject to federal air quality regulation, including (1) well completions at newly hydraulically fractured natural gas wells and at existing wells that are refractured; (2) compressors; (3) pneumatic controllers; and (4) condensate and crude oil storage tanks.  As of the date of this update, the final rules have not yet been published in the Federal Register. 


EPA Finalizes Ozone Designations Under the 2008 Ozone National Ambient Air Quality Standard

In April 2012, EPA issued its final ozone area designations for the 2008 primary eight-hour ozone standard of 0.075 ppm.


Local Colorado Governments' Focus on Air Quality Impacts from Oil and Gas Operations

Many local communities in Colorado have imposed temporary moratoriums banning hydraulic fracturing until the locality can develop new and revised regulations addressing environmental impacts, including air quality impacts, associated with hydraulic fracturing.  For example, the City of Longmont and Boulder County have instituted moratoriums on new oil and gas drilling to provide additional time to develop new and revised oil and gas regulations that will address, at least partly, air emissions from oil and gas operations, including hydraulic fracturing.  It is generally accepted in Colorado that localities cannot ban oil and gas operations altogether, but the extent to which localities can regulate environmental impacts associated with oil and gas operations is less certain. 


June 2012

Chambers USA Ranks DGS at the Top for Corporate/M&A and Natural Resources & Environment Practices

Chambers USA

The 2012 edition of the Chambers USA ranked Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP first in Colorado in the areas of Corporate/M&A and Natural Resources & Environment. Chambers USA also recognized DGS for its strong Commercial Litigation and Labor & Employment practices.


Environmental Impact of Oil and Gas Production

State Bar of Texas and Texas Tech University School of Law

December 2011

DGS Partner John R. Jacus Speaks at Environmental Impact of Oil and Gas Production

Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP Partner John R. Jacus will be co-speaking at the Environmental Impact of Oil and Gas Production, which is presented by the Oil, Gas and Energy Resources Law Section of the State Bar of Texas and Texas Tech University School of Law, on January 13th at the Omni Houston Hotel in Houston, Texas.  


October 2011

DGS Partner John R. Jacus Speaks at 36th Kentucky Mineral Law Conference

Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP Partner John R. Jacus will be co-speaking on a panel at the 36th Kentucky Mineral Law Conference, which is presented by the Energy & Mineral Law Foundation, on October 19th through the 21st at the Marriott Griffin Gate Resort in Lexington, Kentucky.  


September 2011

Air Quality Constraints on Shale Development Activites

Institute for Energy Law – Center for American and International Law - Second Conference on the Law of Shale Plays

This paper examines the typical sources of air pollutants from various items of equipment and activities common to shale gas and oil production, the current and likely future air quality regulations affecting the operation of these sources and activities, and recent regulatory and administrative developments of particular concern to those involved in shale gas and oil development.  

Presentation Materials  |  Paper

Twenty DGS Lawyers Designated Super Lawyers in New Business Edition

Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP announces that 20 lawyers have been designated "Super Lawyers" in the new Super Lawyers Business Edition published by Thomson Reuters.  The publication will be sent in September to more than 40,000 in-house counsel, presidents, and CEOs of Fortune 1000 companies. 


August 2011

DGS Attorney John R. Jacus Speaks at 2nd Conference on the Law of Shale Plays

Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP announces that John R. Jacus will be speaking at the 2nd Conference on the Law of Shale Plays, which is presented by The Institute for Energy Law, on September 7-8th at the Worthington Renaissance Hotel in Fort Worth, Texas.  Mr. Jacus’ discussion will focus on “Air Quality Constraints on Shale Development Activities.” 


Davis Graham & Stubbs Attorneys Named Best Lawyers®

Thirty-eight DGS attorneys, including nearly half of the firm’s partners, were named Best Lawyers® by publisher Woodward/White, Inc. in its annual guide to legal excellence.  The 2012 edition of The Best Lawyers in America is based on a peer-review survey in which more than 39,000 leading attorneys comment on the legal abilities of other lawyers in their practice areas.  Corporate Counsel magazine has called Best Lawyers® “the most respected referral list of attorneys in practice.”


DGS Attorneys John Jacus and Bob Lawrence Recognized by International Who's Who of Environmental Lawyers

Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP announces John R. Jacus and Robert W. Lawrence have been named among the International Who's Who of Environmental Lawyers.  "Since 1996, Who's Who Legal has identified the foremost legal practitioners in 31 areas of business law," according to publisher Law Business Research Ltd.  "We feature over 10,000 of the world's leading lawyers in over 100 countries."


July 2011

EPA's New Rules for Clean Air Act Permitting in Indian Country

On July 1, 2011, the EPA's new Federal Implementation Plan (FIP) imposing air quality permitting requirements for stationary sources in Indian Country was published in the Federal Register. 76 Fed. Reg. 38748, 38770 (July 1, 2011). The FIP includes two New Source Review regulations applicable to the following stationary sources in Indian Country: (1) new and modified minor sources and minor modifications at existing major sources (Minor NSR Rule); and (2) new and modified major sources in portions of Indian Country designated as nonattainment (Nonattainment Major NSR Rule).


June 2011

Chambers USA Ranks Davis Graham at the Top for Corporate/M&A and Natural Resources & Environment Law in Colorado

The 2011 edition of the Chambers USA ranked Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP first in Colorado in the areas of corporate law, including mergers and acquisitions, and natural resources and environmental law, which consists of the traditional and renewable energy sectors as well as the mining industry.  Chambers USA also recognized DGS for its strong general commercial and labor and employment litigation practices.


December 2010

U.S. EPA Issues Final Rule For Mandatory Reporting of Greenhouse Gases for the Upstream Oil and Natural Gas and Carbon Sequestration Industries

The EPA is operating on an expedited timetable, requiring applicable industries to begin collecting data on January 1, 2011, and begin submitting the first round of reports to the EPA by March 31, 2012. On November 9, 2010, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued final regulations requiring the annual reporting of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from qualifying facilities in the upstream oil and natural gas sector, including onshore production.


August 2010

Davis Graham & Stubbs Attorneys Top “Best Lawyers” List in Colorado

The newly announced, 2011 edition of the Best Lawyers in America ranks Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP first in Colorado-based law practices for corporate governance and compliance law, environmental law, mergers and acquisitions law, natural resources law, oil and gas law and securities law. This year Best Lawyers recognizes 36 DGS attorneys, including 13 who have been named to the list for at least 10 years. Nearly half (46 percent) of DGS partners are recognized in the definitive guide to legal excellence, in addition to several attorneys of counsel to the firm. Best Lawyers is a peer-review survey of more than 39,000 in-house counsels and private practice attorneys.


Air Quality Constraints on the Public Lands

Law Seminars International Energy Development on Public Lands

July 2010

U.S. EPA Releases Final Rule Requiring Mandatory Reporting of Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Underground Coal Mines, Industrial Wastewater Treatment Facilities, Industrial Waste Landfills and Magnesium Production

On January 1, 2010, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Mandatory Reporting of Greenhouse Gases Rule (MRR), 40 CFR Part 98, went into effect, requiring roughly 10,000 facilities from 11 source categories to annually report their greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. EPA first proposed the MRR in April 2009, and received a substantial number of comments from a wide range of industries subject to reporting under the proposed rule. In the final MRR, published in the October 30, 2009, Federal Register, the EPA did not provide reporting requirements for a number of industry sectors, choosing instead to delay finalizing the reporting requirements for certain sectors in order to further review public comments and perform additional analyses. EPA has since been busy promulgating additional Subparts of the MRR for specific industry sectors, including those recently finalized and discussed below.


June 2010

Chambers USA Places DGS at the Top for Corporate/M&A and Natural Resources/Environmental Law in Colorado

The 2010 edition of the Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business today ranked Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP first in Colorado in the areas of corporate law, including mergers and acquisitions, and natural resources and environmental law, which includes the traditional and renewable energy sectors and the mining industry. Chambers also recognized DGS for its strong general commercial and employment litigation practices.


April 2010

Go West Young Man? Air Quality Developments Affecting Western Oil and Gas Exploration and Production

Natural Resources & Environment, The American Bar Association

Co-authors: John R. Jacus and Denee A. DiLuigi

Western U.S. oil and gas (O&G) exploration and production continue to be the subject of intense regional and national interest, not only as they relate to economic and energy security benefits, but also due to increasing air-related environmental concerns. Chief among such concerns is the emission of criteria and hazardous air pollutants (HAPs). This sector’s greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and potential ability to impair visibility in national parks and wilderness areas are also of increased interest. Unlike other regions of the country facing air quality challenges, the western United States stands out as a primary source of growing emissions – even as states across the region and the O&G industry itself have moved to control more tightly the many minor sources that typify O&G activities.


September 2009

Oil Gas Industry Update

Limited Guidance Offered in Applying New Colorado Oil & Gas Rules on Federal Lands

New and Revised General Construction Permits for E&P Condensate and Produced Water Tanks

Read Update...

The American Clean Energy & Security Act of 2009 (ACES)

Club 20 Presentation

Co-authors: John J. Jacus and Denee A.DiLuigi

Jacus, DiLuigi Come Up “ACES” in Western Colorado

John Jacus and Denee DiLuigi discussed the “ACES” bill and the policy implications of the proposed climate change legislation at Club 20’s fall meeting, held September 12 in Grand Junction, Colorado.  Amory Lovins of the Rocky Mountain Institute and others participated, with Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter providing the keynote address.


New Developments in Colorado Concerning Produced Water, Water Rights and Well Permitting

On August 31, 2009, the Colorado Office of the State Engineer (SEO) issued proposed Rules and Regulations for the Determination of the Nontributary Nature of Ground Water Produced through Wells in Conjunction with the Mining of Minerals (Proposed Rules).

Important Royalty Decision Issued Produced Water, Water Rights and Well Permitting

August 2009

Davis Graham & Stubbs Attorneys Top “Best Lawyers” List in Colorado

The 2010 edition of the Best Lawyers in America ranks Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP first in Colorado-based attorneys practicing in the areas of commercial litigation, corporate governance and compliance law, environmental law, natural resources law, oil & gas law and securities law. 


Environmental Enforcement Series

Join us for three breakfast briefings examining environmental enforcement issues, including how to successfully navigate inspections during the Obama years, an update on environmental audits and voluntary disclosure, and a discussion of recent changes and developments in air and water quality enforcement.


June 2009

House Passes American Clean Energy and Security Act

A little after 7 p.m. eastern time on Friday, June 26, the U.S. House of Representatives narrowly passed a highly-controversial and revised version of the American Clean Energy and Security Act (“ACES” aka the Waxman-Markey bill), now an almost 1,500 page bill aimed at controlling pollution that is connected to climate change by establishing mandatory limits on greenhouse gas emissions.


Chambers USA Reaffirms High Marks for Davis Graham & Stubbs Environmental Law and Corporate Practices

Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP has been recognized again in Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business in the areas of Environmental, Corporate/M&A, Labor & Employment and Commercial Litigation.


April 2009

John Jacus to be Featured Speaker at Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation COGCC Workshop

John Jacus served on the Program Committee and will be one of the featured speakers for the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation's upcoming workshop on the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission report.


March 2009

Federal and State Proposals to Require GHG Reporting

As expected, EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson announced on Tuesday, March 10, 2009, that the agency would require comprehensive national reporting of emissions of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases (GHG) produced by major sources in the United States as the agency's first regulatory proposal dealing with climate change and the GHGs that contribute to global warming.


October 2008

Davis Graham & Stubbs tops "Best Lawyer" list in Colorado

Davis Graham & Stubbs LLP, with 31 attorneys practicing in 30 fields, ranks first in Colorado in the 2009 edition of Best Lawyers in America for the practice areas of corporate and securities law and commercial litigation as well as energy, environmental, natural resources and oil and gas law. The number of DGS lawyers recognized in the definitive guide to legal excellence increased by two, and includes nearly half of the firm’s partners. 


June 2008

Air Permitting Source Aggregation in Colorado

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, Air Pollution Control Division (“APCD”), recently issued an addendum to a technical review document in support of a renewal operating permit that it issued in January 2007 that will be of interest to EHS professionals in the oil and gas industry. 


December 2007

House Bill 1341 and the COGCC's Strawman Proposal

In its 2007 legislative Session, the Colorado General Assembly enacted House Bill 1341, legislation substantially changing the composition of the Colorado Oil & Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC) and charging the Commission to include consideration of environmental, wildlife and public health impacts associated with its decisions.


September 2007

Davis Graham & Stubbs Tops "Best Lawyers" List in Colorado

Davis Graham & Stubbs – with 29 attorneys practicing in 30 fields – ranks first in Colorado-based attorneys listed in the 2008 edition of Best Lawyers in America for the practice areas of commercial litigation, natural resources, environmental law and corporate governance and compliance law. The number of DGS lawyers recognized in the definitive guide to legal excellence increased by three, and includes half of the firm’s partners. The book, targeted for in-house counsel, is to be published in December 2007.


June 2007

Colorado AQCC Regulation No. 7 Revised

On December 17, 2006, Colorado’s Air Quality Control Commission (“AQCC” or “Commission”) adopted significant revisions to AQCC Regulation No. 7, concerning the control of volatile organic compound (“VOC”) emissions.


April 2007

Davis Graham & Stubbs Attorneys Featured at Oil & Gas Industry Roundtable

Davis Graham & Stubbs partners Laura Riese, John Jacus and John Elofson will be panelists for a national oil and gas industry roundtable in Houston on April 26-27.  The conference, “Measuring Return on Environment” will be presented by MetaVu, a business consulting firm in Denver.


September 2006

Colorado and Federal Air Quality Developments

The Colorado Air Quality Control Commission (the "Commission") is considering revisions to the current upset provision in Section II.E of the Commission's Common Provisions Conditions Regulation (the "Upset Provision"). Under the current version, upset conditions experienced by operators of sources of air pollutants are not considered violations if the Air Pollution Control Division (the "Division") is notified as soon as possible, followed by a written notice explaining the cause of the occurrence and the action being taken to correct the conditions. The Division has drafted a proposed version of the upset provision which limits the circumstances in which operators can claim an upset, and does not allow for an affirmative defense to claims for injunctive relief, or violations of State Implementation Plan (the "SIP") provisions or federally enforceable performance standards.


Best Lawyers in America Recognizes 26 Davis Graham & Stubbs Attorneys

Twenty-six Davis Graham & Stubbs attorneys practicing in 28 fields will be recognized in the 2007 edition of The Best Lawyers in America. The number of DGS lawyers recognized in the definitive guide to legal excellence increased by five this year, and represents more than 40% of DGS partners overall. DGS ranks first in the number of Colorado-based attorneys listed by the 2007 edition of Best Lawyers in the Commercial Litigation, Natural Resources, Environmental Law, Securities Law and Corporate Governance and Compliance Law practice areas.


June 2006

Two More Davis Graham & Stubbs Attorneys Selected for International Who's Who Guides

Davis Graham & Stubbs lawyers Deborah Friedman and Tom McNamara were recently recognized by Who’s Who Legal as among the leading lawyers worldwide in their respective fields. Ms. Friedman was named in The International Who’s Who of Mining Lawyers 2006, and Mr. McNamara was selected for The International Who’s Who of Commercial Litigators 2006.


December 2004

Transport of Hazardous Waste

Regulating the transport of hazardous waste is key to any system of comprehensive regulation such as that envisioned by Congress in its passage of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA). RCRA’s trademark cradle-to-grave regulatory scheme would not be possible without effective, implementable procedures for tracking hazardous waste during transport from its place of origin to its final destination. Considering how vital this component of RCRA’s regulatory scheme is to the overall success of the program, it perhaps is surprising to note how few regulations EPA has developed that apply to the transport of hazardous waste. Part 263 of Title 40, C.F.R., is quite sparse compared with the voluminous provisions in RCRA’s generator standards or standards for treatment, storage, and disposal (TSD) facilities.


November 2004

RCRA Compliance Orders in the Oil Patch: Sleeping Giant or Paper Tiger?

Co-authors: John Jacus and Susan Keller Geer

The Solid Waste Disposal Act,1 as amended by the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act of 1976 (RCRA), is best known for its prospective, "cradle-to-grave" regulation of hazardous wastes.


September 2004

Mineral Processing Under the EPA Spotlight

Industrial Minerals

On 10 DECEMBER 2003, the  United States Environmental Protedion Agency (EPA)  announced that among its  priorities for the next three years would be increased enforcement against mineral processing facilities 1. The question naturally arises whether this initiative will  subject the industrial minerals sector to increased environmental scrutiny.


June 2004

Recent Air Regulatory Changes in Colorado Affecting the Oil & Gas Industry

Presented to the Natural Resources & Energy Section of the Colorado Bar Association

October 2001

Environmental Issues in Redevelopment

Colorado Real Estate Journal

The redevelopment of industrial, commercial and residential properties is always a timely issue for the real estate industry, but never more so than now.  Even with the slowed market of late, redevelopment is an increasingly attractive alternative that can revitalize neighborhoods, return idle property to profitability, reduce urban sprawl and save the cost of infrastructure development when compared to raw land.

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April 2001

Mold Liability: A Growing Concern

The Colorado Real Estate Journal

Real Estate professionals should be aware of a relatively new basis for premises and product liability and associated hazard abatement expense: mold. Of course, mold is literally nothing "new," and it is ubiquitous in the outdoor environment; however, it is a growing concern for building owners, managers and purchasers as the number and size of mold-related claims and judgments has grown significantly in the last few years.


October 2000

An Array of Issues: The Legal Climate is Conducive to an Environmental Management Overhaul

The Colorado Lawyer

The field of Environmental Law has been known for sometime as long on acronyms and legalese, but short on clear and simple steps to achieve compliance with legal requirements. This reputation has been earned in large measure due to a complex array of overlapping and sometimes inconsistent legal requirements under state and federal laws that often address a single class of chemicals or a single environmental medium – water, air or waste. The formidable challenge of navigating such requirements is then magnified by the stiff penalties and other sanctions imposed for non-compliance that is discovered by or disclosed to regulators.


March 2000

Law & Accounting: Some Remediation Costs Deductible

Colorado Real Estate Journal

A recent Internal Revenue Service memorandum further clarifies that certain environmental remediation costs can be fully deducted in the year incurred.


January 2000

Detoxifying – Environmental Law: New Cases Control Recovery of Costs for Cleanup

The Daily Journal

Although the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, 42 U.S.C. Sections 9601-75 (1994), became law almost 20 years ago, parties still are litigating at considerable cost to clarify the meaning of its provisions. This judicial process increases in complexity as a result of the frequent pronouncement of administrative reforms by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the continuing debate over CERCLA’s draconian liability scheme and high costs, and the inability of Congress to re-authorize and amend the statute in the middle of such controversy.


June 1999

Coming Full CERCLA: An Update on Superfund Developments

Environmental Liability

In the past couple of years, a number of important decisions have been written which will significantly affect future interpretation and enforcement of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act ('CERCLA' or 'Superfund') in the United States. Although enacted almost 20 years ago, it has taken the courts a considerable amount of time and costly litigation to develop a basic understanding of this controversial environmental statute.


May 1999

Colorado and the EPA Struggle Over the State's Newly Reaffirmed Environmental Audit Law

The Colorado Journal, May 26, 1999

In April, Colorado Gov. Bill Owens signed into law Senate Bill 70, which effectively reaffirmed and reauthorized the state's controversial Environmental Audit Privilege Law, with one significant change. Unlike SB139, the original legislation passed in 1994, SB70 has no "sunset" provision. The original legislation was to sunset after five years, this July.