European Environmental & Public Law

Latham & Watkins helps clients navigate European environment and public laws that impact their day-to-day business as well as their corporate and finance transactions — including compliance, management, and liability issues.

Why Latham

Helping Clients Realize Success Amidst Regulation

Latham advises purchasers, sellers, investors, borrowers, lenders, and underwriters — across nearly all sectors — based in, or doing business in, the EU. The firm helps clients to understand both the challenges and the opportunities that environmental and climate change legislation create. Latham uses an innovative approach to help clients navigate potential environmental liabilities, while identifying the opportunities to obtain a competitive advantage, which regulation can present, both onshore and offshore.

The firm regularly helps clients with permitting, compliance, and advice on issues across Europe, such as:

  • Buildings-Related Regulations
  • Climate Change Regulations (EU Emissions Trading Scheme)
  • Energy Regulations
  • ESG Risks and Opportunities and Non-Financial Reporting
  • EU Chemical Regulations (REACH, Biocides, and classification, labelling, and packaging)
  • EU Permitting Regulations (Industrial Emissions Directive)
  • EU State Aid law
  • EU Waste and Water Framework Directives
  • Mining laws
  • Oil & Gas
  • RoHS and WEEE Directives
  • Soil and Groundwater Contamination Regulations (Environmental Liability Directive)
  • Transfrontier Shipment of Waste
Facilitating Business and Transactions

When clients are involved in transactions, Latham’s European Environmental Practice works with the firm’s market-leading transactional practices, identifying and analyzing environmental risk issues, and helping to price material risks identified in due diligence.

The Latham European Environmental Practice lawyers regularly advise clients on transferring risk and how to find environmental value drivers, including areas where clients may enjoy significant cost savings. Latham excels at structuring deal issues in a manner appropriate to the environmental risk.

Accessing the Best Resources

Latham draws on the experience and insight of public law practitioners across Europe and across the globe. Because the firm has a globally recognized premier Environment, Land & Resources Practice, clients have immediate access to lawyers with specific subject matter experience across a full spectrum of complex environmental areas.

Beyond the firm, the practice has strong working relationships with technical consultants, insurance brokers, academics, and regulatory authorities, to ensure clients’ needs are addressed comprehensively.

Dealing From Experience

Latham has been involved in developing and implementing a range of cutting-edge environmental solutions for clients.

Recent representative work includes:  

  • Representing a major oil company on the sale of its shares and related interest in subsidiaries in South Africa and Botswana. The company’s South African assets included an oil refinery, a lubricants plant in Durban, 820 petrol stations, and other oil storage facilities
  • Advising a large multinational corporation on transfrontier shipment of waste issues
  • Advising a financial institution on the intersection between environmental and human rights, including in relation to complaints made under the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development Guidelines for multinationals and the application of the Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights
  • Advising a German real estate conglomerate on the operation and construction of underground storage facilities for oil and gas and aboveground facilities/pipelines involving considerations under environmental, planning, and mining laws
  • Advising a major chemicals manufacturer on the development of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme and associated permitting issues
  • Advising a large multinational in relation to environmental tax incentives

Our Experience

Because the firm has a globally recognized premier Environment, Land & Resources Practice, clients have immediate access to lawyers with specific subject matter experience across a full spectrum of complex environmental areas.


Latham Advises a Consortium Consisting of Astorg Asset Management, Nordic Capital, Novo Holdings and their Portfolio Company eResearchTechnologies in its Merger with Bioclinica, a Portfolio Company of Cinven

Thought Leadership

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