Alex Garel-Frantzen loves tackling complex environmental issues. He represents businesses in a wide variety of environmental regulatory, permitting, transactional, and litigation matters, including federal and state cases arising under CERCLA, brownfields redevelopment statutes, RCRA, the Clean Water Act, and state analogs. Alex counsels clients on federal, state, and local regulatory compliance issues and the environmental aspects of real estate transactions and renewable energy development. He represents a variety of businesses, including electric power utilities; gas transmission, storage, and distribution companies; renewable energy developers; investment firms; industrial manufacturers and suppliers; and consumer product manufacturers, distributors, and retailers.
Alex is co-chair of the Chicago Bar Association, Young Lawyers Section, Environmental Law Committee and member of the University of Illinois College of Law Alumni Board.
- Obtained dismissal of third-party challenge to Clean Water Act Section 401 Water Quality Certification issued to electric and natural gas company, as part of its transmission line construction project.
- Obtained dismissal of third-party appeal challenging state variance issued to electric and natural gas company related to the management of coal combustion residuals surface impoundments.
- Represents electric and natural gas utility at major Superfund sites in New York City.
- Represents various electric and natural gas utilities in government-initiated and complex, private party litigation arising under CERCLA and RCRA.
- Represents electric power utility in third-party appeal of state-issued water permit.
- Represents clients in federal and state investigations under the Clean Air Act, CERCLA, RCRA, and state analogs.
- Advises clients on RCRA compliance.
- Advises clients on Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) compliance.
- Counsels clients on California Proposition 65 (Prop 65) and product stewardship regulatory compliance.
- Counsels clients on National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permitting.
Boards, Memberships & Certifications
- Chicago Bar Association, YLS Environmental Law Committee, Co-Chair
- University of Illinois College of Law, Alumni Board, Member
Alex is committed to public service, with a recent focus on immigration and criminal law matters.
- Obtained grant of asylum from Chicago Immigration Court on behalf of a family from Burma (Myanmar)
- Obtained grant of asylum from the USCIS on behalf of a citizen of Togo, Africa.
- Represented a young man in Cook County Juvenile Court on robbery-related charges.
- Obtained renewal of client’s deferred action for childhood arrivals and authorization to work in the United States.
- Secured mother’s co-guardianship over her adult son whose physical and mental disabilities prevented him from making needed medical decisions on his own.
- Best Lawyers: Ones to Watch, Best Lawyers (2022-2024)
- Illinois Rising Star, Illinois Super Lawyers, Thomson Reuters (2021)
Publications & Presentations
“The Year in Review: Case Law and Statutory Update,” ISBA Environmental Law Section’s 21st Annual Environmental Law Conference (May 12, 2023)
- “Intergenerational Environmental Law Advice: What New Environmental Lawyers Need to Know to Succeed in the Field and What Our More ‘Seasoned’ Members Need to Know to Stay Relevant,” Chicago Bar Association Environmental Law Committee, Chicago (Mar. 16, 2023)
- “CERCLA § 309 and Beyond: Statute of Limitations, Rules of Repose, and the Broad Implications of CTS Corp. v. Waldburger Outside the Context of Environmental Law,” University of Illinois Law Review Vol. 865 (2015)
- “Methane Emissions Regulations on the Horizon for the Oil and Gas Industry,” (co-author) Bloomberg BNA Daily Environment Report (Aug. 2014)
- “Gangsters and Organized Crime in Jewish Chicago,” The History Press (2013)
- “Clean Air Act Legal Updates,” AAPCA 2021 Virtual Spring Meeting, Webinar (Jun. 24, 2021)
- “Environmental and Energy Law Policy: A Trump vs. Biden Administration,” (moderator) The Chicago Bar Association, Young Lawyers Section, Environmental Law Committee (Oct. 6, 2020)
- “Views on Trump Administration Environmental Policy Updates,” Chicago Bar Association, Young Lawyers Sectionm, Chicago, Ill. (Feb. 21, 2018)
- “Careers in Environmental Law for Young Lawyers,” Chicago Bar Association, Chicago, Ill. (Sep. 28, 2017)