Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP
Related services and key industries
Joseph Drapalski is a partner in Norton Rose Fulbright's Los Angeles office. He focuses on environmental law and litigation, including federal and state Superfund, enforcement, compliance counseling, and transactional matters.
Joseph's litigation practice involves CERCLA cost recovery and contribution, natural resource damages, groundwater and sediment contamination lawsuits, toxic exposure, and environmental citizen suits.
Joseph's regulatory and compliance practice focuses on federal and state Superfund, the Clean Water Act, RCRA, National Contingency Plan, CEQA, and NEPA. He has strong experience in all facets of CERCLA practice, including at complex, multi-party, federal and state Superfund sites across the country.
He frequently advises clients on environmental aspects of business transactions, including complex real estate and corporate transactions. Joseph handles the review and analysis of environmental diligence materials, environmental review of properties including coordination with environmental consultants, and drafting and negotiating environmental provisions such as indemnification and allocation of environmental liabilities.
JD, Duke University School of Law
LL.M, International and Comparative Law, Duke University School of Law
BA, magna cum laude, History and International Relations, Amherst College
While in law school, Joseph served as Articles Editor for both the Duke Law Journal and Duke Environmental Law & Policy Forum.
- California State Bar
- Defend major energy company in lawsuit for alleged natural resource damages and CERCLA cost recovery
- Defend global manufacturer of engineered products in lawsuits alleging soil and groundwater contamination
- Defend nation's largest producer of construction materials in lawsuit to resolve indemnification obligations concerning environmental liability at Superfund site
- Defend construction materials producer and former solvent manufacturer in lawsuits concerning alleged chemical exposure
Superfund and Environmental Compliance:
- Represent major oil company at multiple Superfund sites, including Portland Harbor Superfund Site
- Represent nation's largest producer of construction materials at North Hollywood Superfund Site
- Advise manufacturer of engineered products on legacy liability through decades of corporate transactions and changes
- Counsel electric and natural gas utility on Clean Water Act compliance
- Rising Star, Southern California Super Lawyers, Thomson Reuters, 2020 – 2022
- Co-Author, "EPA Issues 11th Hour Draft Guidance, Dilutes County of Maui Impact on Groundwater Permitting," American Bar Association, December 19, 2020
- Co-Author, "The Navigable Waters Protection Rule: Streamlining Waters of the United States," Environmental & Energy Litigation, May 26, 2020
- Co-Author, "RCRA Citizen Suits: Climate Change Risk and Expanding Endangerment," Environmental & Energy Litigation, September 17, 2019
- Co-Author, "The New Wave of Citizen Suits: RCRA, Endangerment, and Climate Change," Environmental & Energy Litigation Summer 2017 Newsletter, August 28, 2017
- Co-Author, "EPA Prioritizes and Centralizes Superfund Cleanups," American Bar Association, June 23, 2017
- Author, "Trump Administration Orders Narrowing of the Waters of the United States Rule," American Bar Association, March 8, 2017
- Author, "Spoliation Complicates Remediation: Consider the Duty to Preserve," Environmental & Energy Litigation Winter 2017 Newsletter, February 28, 2017
- Contributing author, "Legal and Regulatory" section of "Smart Contracts: 12 Use Cases for Business & Beyond," Chamber of Digital Commerce, December 5, 2016
- Co-Author, "Canada Attunes Dangerous Goods Transportation To US Rules," Law360.com, July 20, 2016
- Co-Author, "Maine's Green Chemistry Law," Norton Rose Fulbright — Consumer Products Law Blog, July 7, 2016
- Co-Author, "Update on Washington's Lead, Cadmium, and Phthalates Enforcement," Norton Rose Fulbright — Consumer Products Law Blog, March 14, 2016
- Co-Author, "Washington's Green Chemistry Law," Norton Rose Fulbright — Consumer Products Law Blog, February 4, 2016
- Co-Author, "The Mysterious World of Green Chemistry: A Miniseries," Norton Rose Fulbright — Consumer Products Law Blog, November 11, 2015
Joseph has been often quoted in the press, including:
- Quoted, "Novel RCRA Citizen Suits Rise as Federal Enforcement, Funding Decline," InsideEPA, October 8, 2019.
- Article written on presentation given by Joseph.
- Quoted on background, "How a Kids' Lawsuit Could Upend U.S. Climate Rules," Bloomberg Businessweek, December 6, 2018.
- Quoted on background regarding citizen suit case law.
- "Clean Water Act Permitting after County of Maui: What to Expect," Presenter, ProLawCLE, March 23, 2021
- "SEER Essentials: Emerging Trends in Litigating RCRA Citizen Suits," Panelist, American Bar Association, September 17, 2019
- "17th Annual Environmental Law Fall Symposium," Organizer and Host, Los Angeles County Bar Association, Los Angeles, California, November 9, 2018
- "Anatomy of an Enforcement Action: An Interactive Panel with the State and Regional Water Boards," Moderator, Los Angeles County Bar Association, Los Angeles, California, September 29, 2016
- Los Angeles County Bar Association — Environmental Law Section
- Executive Committee
- American Bar Association — Litigation and Environment, Energy and Resources Law Sections
- Chair, RCRA Subcommittee
- State Bar of California — Environmental Law Section