Kimberly Seely

Kim Seely has been practicing environmental law for more than twenty-five years.  She has extensive experience in representing clients in all aspects of clean-up and remediation under federal and state law, including allocation, cost recovery, natural resource damage, and insurance recovery matters.  She has successfully represented clients in a number of highly complex multi-party and multi-agency remediation cases; obtaining favorable allocation, cost recovery, and insurance contribution outcomes.  She has also successfully represented clients against cost recovery assertions and claims.

In complex environmental litigation matters, Kim is known for being able to develop comprehensive strategies aimed at fostering favorable client outcomes, and being able to work with numerous opposing and third-party counsel and agency representatives in developing and implementing efficient case management protocol.

In addition to representing clients in cost recovery and remediation actions, Kim also advises and represents clients in a wide range of environmental matters, including those involving the Clean Water Act (CWA), Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), and environmental bankruptcy matters. Her practice is focused in identifying client objectives, developing strategies designed to further such objectives, and working with regulators and other constituencies in seeking the desired outcome.

Representative Engagements

Ms. Seely’s representative engagements include:
  • Multi-Party Environmental Cleanup: Representation of clients at several multi-party cleanup sites which involve participation in varying types of allocation processes and negotiation of settlement agreements with both state and federal agencies. Engagements also comprise environmental litigation, natural resource damages, bankruptcy, and agency enforcement actions for violations of RCRA and CWA (including NPDES permits).
  • Other Superfund Cleanup. Counsel for several large companies and port districts at a number of Superfund sites with and outside the State of Washington.  Activities performed include negotiation and preparation of numerous agreements to govern cleanup and the allocation of liability among responsible parties, including preparation of an allocation record through a discovery process, selection and coordination of experts, briefing and submittal of position papers, and ultimately commenting on a preliminary allocation from which the final allocation of liability is derived.
  • Environmental Litigation: Successfully represented a number of clients in complex cost recovery and contribution actions from both plaintiff and defendant perspectives; including cases involving numerous parties, multiple sources of commingled contamination, and multifaceted allocations of liability.  Successfully defended a common law action seeking substantial recovery for diminution of property value for migration of groundwater contamination.
  • Asarco Matters - Worked on trial team to defend Asarco against nearly $400 million in cost recovery claims filed by the State of Washington in Asarco bankruptcy proceedings that concluded in late 2009, and trial team that defended Asarco in a six month trial in Idaho Federal District Court in litigation involving EPA/DOJ’s pursuit of cost recovery for remediation costs and natural resource damages involving the Coeur d’Alene Basin in Idaho.
  • Contract Negotiations: Negotiated and prepared agency agreements, purchase and sale agreements, environmental covenants, and a large variety of contracts between entities and individuals at contaminated sites located within several different states.
  • CWA NPDES Compliance: Represented clients with respect to NPDES permit compliance and negotiation, including one of the nation’s largest airlines in its effort to comply with state and federal storm water regulations.
  • Indian Law: Counsel to a solid waste company with respect to state jurisdiction over Tribal lands. Authored a chapter in the Environmental Law and Practice Manual (West Publishing), which thoroughly examines the interface of environmental and Indian Law.
  • Land Use: Prepared briefs regarding matters involving Washington’s Growth Management Act and argued a hearing on the merits before the Growth Management Hearings Board.
  • Bankruptcy: Counseled several companies with respect to bankruptcy matters including a comprehensive analysis of bankruptcy’s interface with environmental law.
  • Legislation: Counsel to a large company in preparation and adoption of favorable Brownfields legislation to promote development of contaminated sites.
  • Environmental Compliance Under RCRA: Counsel to a large mining company regarding compliance of its operations with complex RCRA regulations.
For more information concerning the firm’s Statement of Qualifications, please contact us.

Previous Professional Experience

Ms. Seely practiced law at Heller Ehrman in its Seattle, Tacoma, and Anchorage offices for 13 years, from 1990 to 2003.  From 2003 to 2010, she led the environmental group at Goodstein Law Group and in 2010 formed Coastline Law Group.  Prior to practicing law, Ms. Seely was employed as a petroleum geologist for several years in Denver, CO.  This technical background contributes to her understanding of complex regulatory frameworks and technical issues that arise in environmental matters.

Education

  • University of Colorado School of Law (J.D., 1990)
  • San Diego State University (B.S. Geology, 1980)

Admissions

  • Alaska (1990)
  • Washington (1992)
  • United States District Court for the Western District of Washington

Publications

“Environmental Law and Tribal Rights,” Environmental Law and Practice Manual, West Publishing.

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