Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP’s environment and natural resources lawyers have significant and extensive experience representing American Indian tribes in virtually every major federal environmental law that affects tribes, trust lands and tribal economic development projects, including the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), the Clean Water Act, the Clean Air Act, the Endangered Species Act and the National Historic Preservation Act. For those projects that occur off reservation lands or impact these areas, we also counsel our clients on applicable state and municipal requirements.
We advise our tribal clients on the environmental aspects of land-to-trust conveyances, leasing of Indian lands and development of projects both on and off Indian lands. We ensure that our clients satisfy all environmental assessment requirements, secure necessary permits and approvals and address any contamination issues. Where a private developer or the federal or a state government takes an action that may affect a tribe or its lands, our environmental lawyers have assisted in maximizing the tribe’s role and influence in the regulatory and agency decision-making process. We understand the importance of our tribal clients’ cultural resources and have worked closely with federal agencies, state historic preservation officers and tribal historic preservation officers to identify and minimize, if not avoid, effects of development projects on historic and cultural resources.