Rick R. Rothman focuses on environmental and energy counseling and litigation. Rick’s practice encompasses a broad range of environmental and energy laws, including the laws and regulations concerning air quality (both stationary and mobile sources), water quality, power plant siting, hazardous substances, impacted properties, energy efficiency, climate change, and Proposition 65. He is recognized for his environmental work by Chambers USA, where clients describe Rick as an “expert in air quality matters” and “very smart and knowledgeable, and easy to work with.”
Rick has experience counseling clients in a number of different contexts, including threatened enforcement actions, variance requests, permitting and appeals, transactional diligence reviews, and meeting state and federal reporting requirements and warning requirements.
Rick’s litigation practice involves the representation of clients from large corporations to local agencies in matters before both federal and state courts. He has litigated cases addressing alleged violations of most of the major environmental statutes, as well as cases involving alleged common law violations and injuries arising from exposures to products and chemicals regulated by those statutes.
His recent case load has included Clean Air Act enforcement matters, climate change litigation, Superfund actions, enforcement of waste disposal requirements, Clean Water Act discharges, Proposition 65 enforcement actions, multimedia enforcement actions, and chemical exposure complaints. Rick has worked on greenhouse gas reporting, mitigation, and litigation matters, and is a member of the firm’s Climate Change and Sustainability Working Group.
Rick has also applied his environmental knowledge to the appellate context. He has represented clients in both state and federal courts of appeal, including Clean Air Act cases, before the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and a Proposition 65 case before the California Court of Appeal, Third Appellate District.
Prior to joining Morgan Lewis, Rick was a partner in the environmental practice of another international law firm, where he served as a practice group leader and office managing partner of the Los Angeles office.
Recognized, Leaders in Environmental Law, Environmental and Energy Law and Litigation, Lawdragon Green 500 (2023)
Recognized, Lawdragon 500 Leading Environmental & Energy Lawyers (2021)
Member, Practice Group of the Year, Environmental, Law360 (2017, 2019)
Recognized, Acritas Star Lawyer (2017)
Recognized, Environmental Law; Litigation – Environmental, Los Angeles, The Best Lawyers in America (2010–2024)
Lawyer of the Year, Litigation – Environmental, Los Angeles, The Best Lawyers in America (2015)
Ranked, Environment, California, Chambers USA (2009–2023)
Recognized, Super Lawyers, Southern California (2004–2017)
Recognized, Who’s Who Legal: Environment (2014, 2016)
Recommended, Industry Focus: Energy litigation: oil and gas, The Legal 500 US (2020–2023)
Recommended, Industry Focus: Environment: regulatory, The Legal 500 US (2020–2023)
Recommended, Industry Focus, Environment: litigation, The Legal 500 US (2007, 2013, 2020)
Recommended, Industry Focus: Energy (Litigation), The Legal 500 US (2016)
Member, American Bar Association
Member, State Bar of California
Member, Los Angeles County Bar Association
Member, District of Columbia Bar Association
Board Member, Public Counsel