People

Adam Sowatzka is well known for his thorough grasp of environmental issues, gleaned from his experience as an EPA enforcement attorney, general counsel with an international manufacturing company, and lawyer with King & Spalding. In 2017, Chambers recognized him for his strength in defending civil and criminal enforcement matters describing him as "excellent in all aspects" of environmental practice. He has worked on precedent-setting cases and is at the forefront of some of the most significant environmental issues of the day.

With over 22 years of experience as an environmental lawyer, Adam offers pragmatic, business-minded solutions to clients facing complex problems in the ever-changing regulatory environment. He has litigated numerous cases in federal and state courts; represented companies in complex, high-stakes enforcement actions, and advocated before EPA and other regulatory agencies on dozens of rules, permits, and other administrative proceedings.

Adam has handled matters in all environmental media — from water, to air, to waste issues.  He has particular expertise in handling matters involving emerging contaminants, including per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (“PFAS”).  Adam was the lead attorney in one of the first major regulatory matters involving PFAS contamination of a municipal wastewater treatment plant, including the investigation and characterization of a three-county area in Northern Alabama impacted by biosolids from the plant.  Adam is also often called on for his crisis management expertise in areas including accidents, explosions, derailments, spills, and responding to criminal and civil inspections and investigations.

Before entering private practice, Adam was an Associate Regional Counsel with the Environmental Protection Agency’s Southeastern Regional Office, and Vice President and General Counsel of a manufacturing and services subsidiary of Axel Johnson, Inc.

A published author and frequent speaker on environmental compliance and enforcement issues, Adam has been recognized as a leading environmental lawyer by Chambers USA. He has also been named a Georgia Super Lawyer by Georgia Super Lawyers magazine.

Full Bio

Credentials

J.D., Vermont Law School, cum laude

M.S.E.L., Vermont Law School, magna cum laude

B.S., University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, cum laude

Alabama

District of Columbia

Georgia

U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Alabama

Wisconsin

Listed as a leading Environmental lawyer in Georgia


Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, 2011–Present

Named a Georgia Super Lawyer in Environmental Law


Georgia Super Lawyers, 2014–Present

Named a Georgia Rising Star in Environmental Law


Georgia Super Lawyers, 2011–2013

Listed in Environmental Law and Litigation


Best Lawyers, 2013–Present

Member – Environmental Editorial Advisory Board


Law360, 2011–2016

Selected as one of Georgia's Legal Elite


Georgia Trend magazine, 2010, 2012

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Recognition

Listed as a leading Environmental lawyer in Georgia


Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, 2011–Present

Named a Georgia Super Lawyer in Environmental Law


Georgia Super Lawyers, 2014–Present

Named a Georgia Rising Star in Environmental Law


Georgia Super Lawyers, 2011–2013

Listed in Environmental Law and Litigation


Best Lawyers, 2013–Present

Member – Environmental Editorial Advisory Board


Law360, 2011–2016

Selected as one of Georgia's Legal Elite


Georgia Trend magazine, 2010, 2012

Matters

Counseling a major international manufacturer in responding to new PFAS legislation in states such as Washington, Colorado, New Hampshire and New York which is impacting their manufacturing operations and product sales.

Representing a large global corporation in response to an inquiry by a utility regarding the discharge of PFAS into the utility’s wastewater treatment plant resulting from the use and release of aqueous film forming foam (“AFFF”).

Representing a large international chemical manufacturer in response to an explosion at its largest U.S. manufacturing facility, including leading the incident response, internal investigation, and responding to regulatory inquiries by the State and Federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”), State and Federal environmental agencies, Chemical Safety Board, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (“ATF”), among others.

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Matters

Counseling a major international manufacturer in responding to new PFAS legislation in states such as Washington, Colorado, New Hampshire and New York which is impacting their manufacturing operations and product sales.

Representing a large global corporation in response to an inquiry by a utility regarding the discharge of PFAS into the utility’s wastewater treatment plant resulting from the use and release of aqueous film forming foam (“AFFF”).

Representing a large international chemical manufacturer in response to an explosion at its largest U.S. manufacturing facility, including leading the incident response, internal investigation, and responding to regulatory inquiries by the State and Federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”), State and Federal environmental agencies, Chemical Safety Board, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (“ATF”), among others.

Counsel to a Fortune 100 company defending a criminal and civil enforcement action involving EPA’s Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting (“RRP”) Rule under the Toxic Substances Control Act (“TSCA”).

Representing a major international manufacturer in a national industrial storm water enforcement action by EPA headquarters, the DOJ and several states initially involving over 400 manufacturing locations.

Representing a Fortune 100 company in addressing historical contamination including polychlorinated biphenyls with EPA and a state agency, and complex allocation issues with the other potentially responsible parties, involving a former major manufacturing site under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (“CERCLA”).

Counsel to a large municipal government in defense of a pending civil enforcement action by the EPA, a state agency and local environmental group alleging Clean Water Act violations regarding its wastewater system (sanitary sewer overflows) and its municipal separate storm sewer system (“MS4”).

Matters

Counseling a major international manufacturer in responding to new PFAS legislation in states such as Washington, Colorado, New Hampshire and New York which is impacting their manufacturing operations and product sales.

Representing a large global corporation in response to an inquiry by a utility regarding the discharge of PFAS into the utility’s wastewater treatment plant resulting from the use and release of aqueous film forming foam (“AFFF”).

Representing a large international chemical manufacturer in response to an explosion at its largest U.S. manufacturing facility, including leading the incident response, internal investigation, and responding to regulatory inquiries by the State and Federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”), State and Federal environmental agencies, Chemical Safety Board, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (“ATF”), among others.

See more
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Close

Matters

Counseling a major international manufacturer in responding to new PFAS legislation in states such as Washington, Colorado, New Hampshire and New York which is impacting their manufacturing operations and product sales.

Representing a large global corporation in response to an inquiry by a utility regarding the discharge of PFAS into the utility’s wastewater treatment plant resulting from the use and release of aqueous film forming foam (“AFFF”).

Representing a large international chemical manufacturer in response to an explosion at its largest U.S. manufacturing facility, including leading the incident response, internal investigation, and responding to regulatory inquiries by the State and Federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”), State and Federal environmental agencies, Chemical Safety Board, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (“ATF”), among others.

Counsel to a Fortune 100 company defending a criminal and civil enforcement action involving EPA’s Lead Renovation, Repair and Painting (“RRP”) Rule under the Toxic Substances Control Act (“TSCA”).

Representing a major international manufacturer in a national industrial storm water enforcement action by EPA headquarters, the DOJ and several states initially involving over 400 manufacturing locations.

Representing a Fortune 100 company in addressing historical contamination including polychlorinated biphenyls with EPA and a state agency, and complex allocation issues with the other potentially responsible parties, involving a former major manufacturing site under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (“CERCLA”).

Counsel to a large municipal government in defense of a pending civil enforcement action by the EPA, a state agency and local environmental group alleging Clean Water Act violations regarding its wastewater system (sanitary sewer overflows) and its municipal separate storm sewer system (“MS4”).

Credentials

J.D., Vermont Law School, cum laude

M.S.E.L., Vermont Law School, magna cum laude

B.S., University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, cum laude

Alabama

District of Columbia

Georgia

U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Alabama

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Alabama

Wisconsin

Listed as a leading Environmental lawyer in Georgia


Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, 2011–Present

Named a Georgia Super Lawyer in Environmental Law


Georgia Super Lawyers, 2014–Present

Named a Georgia Rising Star in Environmental Law


Georgia Super Lawyers, 2011–2013

Listed in Environmental Law and Litigation


Best Lawyers, 2013–Present

Member – Environmental Editorial Advisory Board


Law360, 2011–2016

Selected as one of Georgia's Legal Elite


Georgia Trend magazine, 2010, 2012

Icon close

Close

Recognition

Listed as a leading Environmental lawyer in Georgia


Chambers USA: America's Leading Lawyers for Business, 2011–Present

Named a Georgia Super Lawyer in Environmental Law


Georgia Super Lawyers, 2014–Present

Named a Georgia Rising Star in Environmental Law


Georgia Super Lawyers, 2011–2013

Listed in Environmental Law and Litigation


Best Lawyers, 2013–Present

Member – Environmental Editorial Advisory Board


Law360, 2011–2016

Selected as one of Georgia's Legal Elite


Georgia Trend magazine, 2010, 2012