Friday, April 22, 2016

New California firm-based sustainability law update

Allen Matkins, a well-respected California real estate law firm, has just started a "Sustainable Development Update" newsletter.  Looks like it could become a useful source for what's happening on the ground, at least in California.  Their first edition is below with a subscribe button.

[Note:  I have no connection with Allen Matkins, though I do know several attorneys that used to work there.]



Subscribe to our new Sustainable Development Update newsletter. 


April 20, 2016 | Problem viewing? Click to view online.


Dear Stephen,

Please accept our invitation to subscribe toSustainable Development Update.

This free weekly publication is designed for readers who are trying to stay abreast of sustainability issues (in California and throughout the country) but do not have the time to sort through the numerous articles published each week on these topics.

Every edition of Sustainable Development Updateincludes the following:

  • 5-10 of the most important articles published each week
  • Links to important studies, research, or guidelines

We hope you find this publication valuable. Please let us know if you would like to continue receiving this newsletter by clicking on the "Subscribe" box below.


Best regards,

Patrick Perry and Elizabeth Clark
Allen Matkins



Green Buildings are good for the environment, occupants, and the bottom line

CBRE - April 14

Green buildings are good for the environment—that is well known. But what benefits do they offer the people who inhabit them? A recent report from the World Green Building Council tackles that matter head-on, looking at the impact of environmentally friendly construction on user productivity and well-being in the retail sector. One notable example, cited both by the Council’s report, is a major global retailer that explored the effect of natural light versus artificial light on sales. Using a concept store in which one half of the store was naturally lit and the other half was lit artificially, the company found that sales per square foot were significantly higher in the naturally lit half.




The top tech to cut energy costs and emissions? You may be surprised

GreenBiz - March 4

There are many ways to reduce a company’s carbon footprint and energy spending, but you may be surprised at the most popular. Based on revenue gains last year in the various advanced energy segments — including solar, wind, gas turbines, biofuels, energy storage, and building efficiency technologies — the last grabbed the biggest share of revenues, at $63.6 billion globally and $52.8 billion in the U.S., according to the Advanced Energy Economy group. In addition, solar revenues jumped 21 percent year over year to $22.6 billion - and tripled over the past five years. SunPower Vice President Tom Starrs, head of market development and policy, said he sees three changing dynamics in the solar market propelling big uptake by companies, residents and utilities, including that utility scale power plants are finally gaining acceptance in the utility sector overall, with solar becoming a significant piece of many utilities' electricity generation.


Fresh facelift for Ford facilities

Gizmag - April 13

A major redevelopment of Ford's Dearborn campus in Michigan is set to see it become greener, more high-tech, and better at fostering innovation. The Ford Research and Engineering Center Campus will be developed into a new product campus, designed to accommodate 24,000 people, with 4.5 million square feet of floor space. Employees will be able to get around using autonomous vehicles, on-demand shuttles and e-bikes, or via the walking trails, bike paths and covered walkways that will link the campus. The designs draw upon the WELL Building Standard, which is aimed at improving the wellbeing of employees based on air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort, and mental and emotional health.


Wastewater creates energy, products, and more

KQED - April 13

Historically, we’ve treated wastewater as something to be treated and dumped – a liability and not a resource. But Sebastien Tilmans may change our minds about that. Tilmans is the director of operations at the William and Cloy Codiga Resource Recovery Center at Stanford University. The center is working to accelerate the path to commercialization of wastewater technologies. California’s drought has helped to highlight growing interest in wastewater reuse to provide water resources for drinking water and non-potable uses such as flushing toilets and irrigation.


L.A. City Council adopts rules to ease health hazards in polluted neighborhoods

Los Angeles Times - April 13

Addressing decades of complaints from some of the city's most neglected corners, Los Angeles officials last week launched a groundbreaking effort to reduce health risks from industrial and traffic pollution that have plagued neighborhoods from the harbor area to the San Fernando Valley. The City Council unanimously approved special land-use restrictions for some of L.A.'s most polluted neighborhoods and adopted citywide requirements for higher-rated air filters in new developments near freeways. The measures mark a significant effort to bring environmental justice to toxic hot spots where residents of largely low-income communities have for years fought for greater health protections from a heavy concentration of junk yards, auto body shops, oil refineries, factories, freeways and other pollution sources.


Homeless veterans move into The Six in Los Angeles

Affordable Housing Finance - April 15

The Six in Los Angeles, which had its grand opening this month, is Skid Row Housing Trust’s first development with permanent supportive housing specifically for veterans. The Six provides 52 units of permanent supportive housing for formerly homeless veterans and disabled individuals. With solar thermal panels, Energy Star appliances, water-efficient fixtures, and environmentally friendly building materials, The Six has also received LEED Platinum certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.



Patrick A. Perry
Patrick A. Perry
Los Angeles

(213) 955-5504

E-mail me

Elizabeth Clark
Elizabeth Clark
Senior Counsel
San Francisco

(415) 273-7427

E-mail me




A New Transbay Transit Crossing
April 20, 2016
Oakland, California

Water Sustainability in Silicon Valley
May 4, 2016
San Jose, California

Prepare for California’s Aggressive Energy Goals, Today: A Panel on Zero Energy Buildings
ULI San Francisco
May 5, 2016
San Francisco, California

The ULI Panel on Zero Energy Buildings is being presented by the ULI San Francisco Sustainability Subcommittee on Zero Energy Buildings, which is comprised of:
Elizabeth Clark, Allen Matkins
Joshua Kagan, CleanFund Commercial PACE Capital Inc.
Christian Park, Stok
Dave Rhoads, Google
We hope you can join us for this valuable presentation.





Allen Matkins, founded in 1977, is a California-based law firm with approximately 200 attorneys in four major metropolitan areas of California: Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego and San Francisco. The firm's areas of focus include real estate, construction, land use, environmental and natural resources; sustainability; corporate and securities, real estate and commercial finance, bankruptcy, restructurings and creditors' rights, joint ventures and tax; labor, employment and OSHA; and trials, litigation, risk management and alternative dispute resolution in all of these areas.


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