James W. Potter practices primarily in environmental law with an emphasis in air pollution, water pollution, hazardous waste, solid waste, radioactive waste, and Superfund litigation.
With more than 30 years of legal experience, Mr. Potter has represented clients ranging from corporations and financial institutions to municipal and local governments and has practiced before federal, state, and administrative courts.
His background includes handling OSHA-related matters, reviewing loans for environmental concerns, negotiating Brownfields ventures, and negotiating and litigating regulatory enforcement actions and permit appeals.
In addition to publishing a number of client alerts on a broad range of topics, Mr. Potter has authored articles on environmental law and regulatory compliance for the South Carolina Lawyer and for publications of the State Chamber of Commerce and the South Carolina Textile Manufacturers Association.
He has spoken and organized presentations on matters relating to environmental law, natural resources law, administrative law, and emergency preparedness and has presented at meetings of the South Carolina Bar, the South Carolina Administrative and Regulatory Law Association, and various business and financial trade groups. He is a board member of the South Carolina Administrative and Regulatory Law Association.
Mr. Potter graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from the University of Alabama and earned his law degree from the University of Alabama School of Law. While studying for his undergraduate degree, he participated in the engineering co-op program of the United States Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge Facilities.
- The EPA Reaches Back in Time: Appeals Court Allows Government to Veto 404 Permits Issued Years Earlier
Nexsen Pruet attorney James Potter writes about how an Appeals Court recently ruled that the EPA is allowed to exercise its 404(c) veto power "four years after the permit was issued by the Corps of Engineers."
- Industry and Developers Affected by Changes to South Carolina’s General Permit for Stormwater Discharges from Construction Activities
The South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (SCDHEC) has been delegated authority by the EPA to regulate stormwater discharges due to construction activities.
- Client Alert: EPA Proposes Changes for Cooling Water Intakes at Power, Manufacturing and Industrial Facilities
The Environmental Protection Agency has proposed new standards for cooling water intake structures at all existing power generating facilities as well as existing manufacturing and industrial facilities. The June 11, 2012 rulemaking comes as part of the EPA’s implemention of section 316(b) of the Clean Water Act (CWA).
- Client Alert: South Carolina Legislature Acts to Protect Businesses from Citizens Lawsuits
On June 6, 2012 South Carolina’s General Assembly ratified and Governor Nikki Halley signed into law a bill that repeals a 2011 ruling from the State Supreme Court. In Georgetown County League of Women Voters v. Smith Land Co., 393 S.C. 350 (2011), the court ruled that private citizens are allowed to file lawsuits to enforce the Pollution Control Act. That ruling was a big concern for businesses that anticipated a spate of new, perhaps frivolous, lawsuits.
- New Surface Water Permitting Regulation Go Into Effect in South Carolina
In 2010, the General Assembly passed the South Carolina Surface Water Withdrawal, Permitting, Use and Reporting Act. The effective date of the subsequent regulation is June 22, 2012. The purpose of the permitting program is to preserve minimum water flows in surface bodies of the state and to regulate the interbasin transfer of water between river basins.
- Proposed Changes to the Federal Trade Commission’s “Green Guide”
Manufacturers of products making environmental friendly claims on labels and in advertising should carefully review proposed changes to the “Green Guides” originally developed by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) in 1992.
- Green Buildings: A Breakdown of LEED Standards
In April 2009 the U.S. Green Building Council released its most recent version of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building rating system. This standard is a voluntary system but is used (like ASTM) as a reference system for this type of construction....
- CLIENT ALERT: 2005 Amendment Reduces Risks Associated with Redeveloping Brownfields
The South Carolina Brownfields Voluntary Cleanup Program now provides additional liability protection for developers of contaminated lands.
- Contested Water-Testing Methods Pit State Against Feds
Attorney James Potter, who works out of Nexsen Pruet's Columbia office, and John DeWorken on the battle over the Aquatic Life Protection Act.
- South Carolina Businesses Can Reduce the Risks of EPCRA Violations
Although the EPA has begun to pursue violations of the Toxic Release Inventory(TRI) reporting requirements much more aggressively in recent years, recently there have been several positive developments for industry that may lessen the impact of EPA's enforcement initiatives.
- South Carolina Environmental Compliance Survival Guide
James Potter co-authored the South Carolina Environmental Compliance Survival Guide.
- South Carolina Environmental Compliance Update
James Potter is the co-editor of the South Carolina Environmental Compliance Update from 1992 to 1995.
- South Carolina Law Handbook
James Potter is a contributor to the South Carolina Law Handbook, Government Institutes, Inc., Rockville, MD.
Fundamentals of South Carolina Environmental Law Compliance Course, organized in cooperation with Government Institutes, Inc., September 1993, 1994, and 1995. Presented sessions on the Clean Air Act; the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act; the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act, and hazardous waste management.
- University of Alabama, B.S.Ch.E., 1978
- University of Alabama, J.D., 1981
Bar & Court Admissions
- South Carolina
- U.S. District Court, District of South Carolina
- U.S. Court of Appeals, Fourth Circuit
Civic & Professional Memberships
- Alabama State Bar
- South Carolina Bar
- Administrative and Regulatory Section, South Carolina Bar
- Board Member, South Carolina Administrative and Regulatory Law Association
- American Bar Association
- The American Bar Association Section on Environment, Energy, and Resources