Charles L. Franklin’s practice combines policy advocacy, regulatory counseling, litigation, and transactional support, specializing in assisting clients in the chemical, pesticide and energy sectors.

Practice & Background

Drawing on his prior experience as a federal regulator at the Environmental Protection Agency, Mr. Franklin advises clients on regulatory and product stewardship obligations associated with the production, import, export and labeling of chemical and pesticide-containing products, as well as the extensive regulatory compliance obligations associated with related manufacturing operations and supply chains. Mr. Franklin also represents and advises clients during regulatory compliance investigations and enforcement proceedings.

Before joining Akin Gump in 2003, Mr. Franklin spent 13 years in public service, starting in EPA’s Office of Solid Waste working on solid and hazardous waste management policy, and then spending over a decade in EPA’s Office of Pesticides, Prevention and Toxic Substances (now the Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention), working on chemical and pesticide policy issues.

Between 2010 and 2012, Mr. Franklin chaired the American Bar Association’s (ABA) Pesticides, Chemical Regulation and Right-to-Know Committee. Mr. Franklin maintains an active pro bono practice, assisting both individual and institutional clients on legal issues facing developmentally disabled, poor and disenfranchised populations.

Representative Matters

Mr. Franklin has represented clients in a wide range of administrative and judicial proceedings involving federal, state and international matters. Representative matters include:

  • analyzing the current and evolving regulatory and market drivers influencing the green products and services market
  • advocating for clients before the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on green product/labeling policy
  • advising clients on compliance with the Federal Trade Commission’s environmental marketing guidance
  • attaining favorable resolution in litigation with federal government regarding confidential business information claims
  • developing legislative and regulatory advocacy strategies to shape federal policy on chemical and pesticide policy, food and drug policy, nanotechnology regulation and other emerging issues
  • contacting federal and state regulatory and legislative officials to raise awareness regarding client concerns related to pending policies.

Mr. Franklin also advises clients on business, policy and litigation issues related to climate and energy policies in the United States and European Union. Representative matters include:

  • representing clients before federal agencies in Clean Air Act regulations
  • preparing bench arguments and briefs in high-profile climate change nuisance litigation
  • monitoring federal policies and funding opportunities for clean energy technology clients
  • providing legal advice to pilot project linking environmental and financial performance.

Mr. Franklin helps clients assess, manage, and limit environmental liabilities associated with mergers, acquisitions and bankruptcy proceedings involving chemical- and energy-sector concerns. Representative matters include:

  • minimizing environmental risks for creditors in major chemical company reorganization
  • drafting briefs opposing federal efforts to limit discharge of third-party injunctive liability
  • assessing and managing material environmental liabilities in sale of chemical and energy companies.

Public Service

  • Environmental Protection Specialist, U.S. EPA, Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response
  • Regulatory Workgroup Leader, Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Prevention and Toxic Substances
  • Branch Chief, Environmental Protection Agency, Office of Pesticide Programs.

Speaking Engagements

  • Speaker, “Sustainability in the Professional Services Industry,” NSF National Center for Sustainability Standards Webinar, August 18, 2015
  • Speaker, “The Price of Reform: Models for Financing a Toxic Substance Control Act 2.0 Policy,” Roundtable Discussion hosted by Akin Gump, Washington, D.C., February 2015
  • Speaker, “Oil and Water, Gas and TSCA: EPA Looks at Hydraulic Fracturing,” 17thAnnual Energy, Utility & Environment Conference, Phoenix, AZ.