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What to Expect From NJ Enviro Justice Rulemaking: Karen A. Cullinane and Sara L. Sapia in Law360


What to Expect From NJ Enviro Justice Rulemaking: Karen A. Cullinane and Sara L. Sapia in Law360

January 7, 2021
Karen Cullinane

New Jersey’s recent environmental justice legislation, A-2212/S-232, will be consequential for more than half of New Jersey’s 565 municipalities, write Karen A. Cullinane and Sara L. Sapia in an article for Law360.

In their article, Karen and Sara discuss the bill New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy signed into law on September 18, 2020, which aims to protect minority and low-income communities by requiring companies seeking environmental permits for facilities to undergo cumulative impact reviews by the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NYDEP).

“A-2212/S-2322 explicitly asserts that New Jersey’s overburdened communities have historically suffered from a disproportionately high number of adverse health effects caused by industrial facilities, impeding the growth, stability and long-term well-being of the individuals and families within these communities,” they write. “In an effort to mitigate this injustice, the bill is designed to place the focus of the permit renewal process on the directly affected overburdened community, rather than on the needs and benefits of the public and the state. Specifically, the bill requires the NJDEP to evaluate environmental and public health stressors caused by certain industrial facilities—such as power plants, incinerators, sewage treatment plants, solid waste facilities, landfills, scrap metal facilities and any other facilities defined as major sources of air pollution by the federal Clean Air Act—prior to the facilities’ placement or expansion in identified overburdened communities.”


What to Expect From NJ Enviro Justice Rulemaking,” Law360, January 6, 2021


Karen A. Cullinane focuses her practice on complex asbestos litigation, toxic tort matters, mass torts, product liability cases, and general commercial litigation. Karen represents national and international entities including chemical, manufacturing, and mining companies. Her legal experience includes successful precedent-setting motion practice ranging from precluding evidence and dismissing cases on dispositive motions to obtaining directed verdicts on punitive damages.

Sara L. Sapia focuses her practice on counseling and defending clients in a wide range of civil litigation matters from inception through trial. Prior to entering private practice, Sara was a law clerk to the Hon. Maritza Berdote Byrne for the Morris County Superior Court.