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Caroline Lee

Caroline E. Lee


Caroline E. Lee has over a decade of experience representing clients large and small on a wide variety of complex environmental matters. She has a multifaceted environmental practice, with extensive experience in regulatory compliance, enforcement defense, environmental and product liability litigation, corporate and real estate transactions, with a particular interest in water law. Caroline has represented clients in a range of industries, including industrial, chemical, and agricultural sectors, waste handlers, developers, and other landholders, advising under the majority of federal, state, and local environmental, water, natural resources, and health and safety laws.

Caroline has significant experience advising clients on complex and comprehensive site remediation projects including investigation, remediation, waste discharge requirements, and ongoing operation and maintenance of cleanups involving sediments, soils, groundwater, surface water, and volatilization of contaminants to indoor air. She defends clients before local, state, and federal environmental agencies to resolve and/or litigate complex enforcement issues, working closely with technical and expert consultants. She has considerable experience with petitions for writ of mandamus, all facets of motion and trial practice, negotiating consent decrees, pursuing contribution from other responsible parties, and other environmental dispute proceedings. 

Caroline is also deeply involved with the emerging contaminant practice, including PFAS, water supply and rights issues, she manages environmental diligence, negotiates, and drafts a wide variety of contracts in corporate and real estate transactions to shift and account for environmental risks and liabilities, and assists with obtaining permits, entitlements, and other environmental project approvals. 

Bar admissionsCalifornia


  • Represented major commercial developer in complex, contentious, and high-profile project involving the investigation and remediation of hazardous and radioactive contamination. 
  • Provided counsel to major oil company in cutting-edge carbon capture and sequestration project under California's Low Carbon Fuel Standard. 
  • Represented professional sports client on brownfield redevelopment for new stadium. 
  • Advised private and public clients on water supply and quality issues, including advising under SGMA, California's historic legislation to manage groundwater, prior to and during its implementation.
  • Defended litigation challenging projects under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and other state, federal, and local planning and environmental statutes and regulations. 
  • Defended global chemical manufacturer in lengthy and high-profile jury trial.
  • Defended enforcement actions and complex civil lawsuits under CERCLA, RCRA, and state-equivalents.
  • J.D., University of California, Berkeley, School of Law 2013
  • B.A., University of California at Santa Cruz
    with honors


  • Law Clerk, Hon. Edward Chen, U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. 
  • Law Clerk, White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ), Washington, D.C. 

Memberships And Affiliations

  • Board Member, Bar Association of San Francisco, Justice and Diversity Center