Scott Turner, who was a founding member of Nixon Peabody’s environmental practice and chair for fourteen years, concentrates on energy and environmental matters relating to the permitting and regulation of electric generating and other industrial facilities. Noting that clients praise him for his “astute understanding of what officials are looking for,” Chambers USA: America’s Leading Lawyers for Business 2012 has recognized Mr. Turner as a leading lawyer in environmental law.
Mr. Turner has worked on behalf of clients in air and water pollution permit, enforcement, and rulemaking proceedings before the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and various state agencies with respect to coal-, oil-, and natural gas–fired power plants, cogeneration and waste-to-energy facilities, and industrial process sources. In particular, he has had a wide range of dealings with the EPA and states in connection with the prevention of significant deterioration (PSD) and nonattainment area new source review (NANSR) regulations. His work before the EPA has involved EPA headquarters, the Office of Air Quality Planning and Standards (OAQPS), and Regions I, II, III, IV, V, VI, and IX. He has been actively counseling clients on Clean Air Act Title V permitting issues since the adoption of Title V in 1990. With respect to Clean Water Act permitting, he has assisted clients in obtaining N/SPDES permits and renewals and currently is advising electric generating clients on section 316(a) and (b) issues.
Mr. Turner has overseen the environmental review/permitting for major new industrial and energy projects, including a 1100 MW gas-fired merchant power plant in New York, a “greenfield” specialty steel plant in Michigan, a steel mill expansion in New York, a gas turbine cogeneration facility in Pennsylvania, a hazardous waste incineration upgrade in New York, a pipeline compressor station in Kentucky, a glass manufacturing plant expansion in New York, a 500 mw gas-fired merchant power plant in northern California (he led the successful defense of that plant’s PSD permit before the EPA’s Environmental Appeals Board), and a major expansion of New York State’s largest municipal solid waste landfill. Other states in which he has helped obtain permits for energy facilities include Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Virginia, and Oklahoma.
Mr. Turner successfully litigated, in federal district court and the Third Circuit, a major enforcement matter arising from the EPA’s challenge to a PSD permit issued by Pennsylvania to a six-unit gas turbine cogeneration facility. He has successfully defended and/or resolved air pollution enforcement proceedings brought by the EPA, New York, Indiana, Maine, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. He frequently counsels clients against whom Clean Air Act citizen suits have been threatened or commenced.
He represented a Florida electric utility in connection with the EPA’s PSD/NANSR enforcement initiative challenging routine maintenance practices at the nation’s coal-fired power plants and a New York electric utility in a similar initiative mounted by New York State.
Before the New York State Public Service Commission, Mr. Turner represented the owners of the Nine Mile Point 2 Nuclear Station in the prudency proceeding regarding the continuation of construction of that plant and the owner of the Ginna Nuclear Plant in the proceeding that investigated a major steam generator tube rupture at the plant.
Mr. Turner was a senior editor of the New York Environmental Law Handbook, Fifth Ed. (Gov’t. Institutes, 1999). He has published in the Albany Law Review, the Washington & Lee Law Review, and the National Law Journal. He speaks frequently on energy and environmental law issues before such groups as the Air and Waste Management Association, the American Corporate Counsel Association, and the Edison Electric Institute Legal Committee.