Overview

Jane brings an in-depth understanding of the dynamic legal landscape governing the use of air, water, and land. She has extensive experience representing energy companies, developers, lenders, and manufacturing companies in a broad range of environmental matters, and regularly counsels clients on day-to-day compliance issues, including those arising in air permitting and Clean Air Act Amendments, as well as solid and hazardous waste.

As one of the most versatile lawyers in the Environmental Practice Group, Jane regularly bridges the gap between engineers, business people, and regulators. She closely partners with clients to quickly resolve emergent problems as well as understanding the root causes to assist in developing procedures that keep issues from recurring.

Jane breaks down complex regulatory reform issues related to current environmental laws and statutes and suggests reform measures. Her regulatory work aims to recognize past successes and rebuild regulations that reflect the enormous changes in business, technology, and environmental protection attitudes since the beginning of the modern environmental era.

She brings extensive knowledge of greenhouse gas inventory issues and interpretations, including strategies for companies to reduce emissions. Jane also counsels clients on climate-change issues such as carbon sequestration, inventory, and offset projects, and is adept at handling challenging elemental mercury, manufactured gas plant, and polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) issues. She is deeply involved in understanding emission calculations that companies use for both defensive and compliance purposes, and has worked extensively with consultants on these issues.

Jane has served as common counsel in Superfund matters, representing groups of parties alleged to be responsible for environmental remediation. She helps developers understand environmental issues at properties, and works with owners and planners to design contractual and remedial plans to mitigate environmental risks. 

Jane also represents clients in a variety of civil and criminal enforcement actions, including responses to notices of violation or lawsuits, and in pre-enforcement efforts, such as agency requests for information. She works on numerous business transactions, and is well-versed in how a property’s environmental issues impact the resolution of a transaction to transfer property, sell assets, or sell entire businesses.

  • Experience

    Clean Power Plan and Greenhouse Gas Reduction

    • Worked on inventory issues for pipeline and electric generation, pipeline liquids, manufacturing processes, and numerous large facilities with combustion-related or process-related greenhouse gas emissions. 
    • Works with clients to understand, develops comments on, and develops compliance approaches to the EPA’s standards for new, modified, and existing power plants.

    New Source Review

    • Assisted several entities in extensive investigations by EPA of alleged Clean Air Act violations. Worked with companies to provide responses to EPA’s administrative information requests and worked with a team to develop defensive theories based on environmental practice, state law practice, contract law, and corporate successor law.

    Opacity Litigation

    • An NGO brought suit against a client for numerous opacity exceedances. The strategy was to show that the opacity exceedances were a small percentage of operating time and excellent control of particulate matter. Extensive development of the record occurred through discovery and expert reports. The matter was successfully settled upon an overwhelming demonstration of compliance. In addition to successful settlement, the state agreed to and did promulgate a rule change that exempts facilities subject to the MATS rule from the state’s opacity rule. 

    Wetland Bank

    • Assisted a client in developing strategies to maximize the value of wetlands mitigation bank.

    Wind Power and Renewable Energy

    • Advising a company on local and state laws relating to wind farm development, including preparing adequate documentation to withstand zoning and nuisance claims.
    • Negotiating contracts, including public facility contracts, for a biomethane project at a sewage treatment plant, including review of contracts regarding the sale of environmental attributes and renewable fuels.
    • A review for a lender of the safety and environmental issues surrounding a battery storage facility.

    Power Purchase Agreements

    • Assisted power purchasers in understanding how current, upcoming and potential environmental laws may affect the ability or cost of a generator to supply power according to agreement terms.

    Compliance Program Development

    • Assisted in the development of emergency procedures for mercury meter removal programs, and then assisted in the development of long-term training and removal programs.
    • After a Section 404 violation was discovered, developed a training program to engage and heighten awareness of environmental issues presented by large construction projects.
    • Assisted routinely in developing and monitoring environmental health and safety audit programs and develops appropriate responses to issues uncovered through audits.

    Developers and Manufacturers

    • Participated in legal and environmental diligence and site selection for a manufacturing facility in the southeast, including review of numerous site records, contracts, permits, and historic and cultural resources.
    • Worked with a shopping center in Oklahoma City that involved complicated contracts with numerous parties, remediation contracts, insurance contracts, and indemnities.
    • Assisted a residential development in a Chicago suburb with difficult solvent contamination and seller issues.
    • Prepared no further remediation letters for several large residential developments in Chicago (Illinois Site Remediation Program).

    Transactional

    • Planning to collect documents for and respond to due diligence questions for the divestiture of several power plants.
    • Developed a review for an investor of issues concerning upcoming environmental compliance issues for a suite of electric generating facilities.
    • Wrote several reviews of either asset purchase agreements or construction contracts relating to ongoing environmental remediation.
    • Authored a review of numerous used auto facilities, including issues related to lease terms, underground storage tank liabilities, and asbestos or lead in building materials.

    Superfund Matters and Voluntary Remediation

    • Led the legal and technical team for the solvent contamination remediation at several industrial facilities.
    • Working with a client team to remediate a former MGP that lies adjacent to a creek. The process has included negotiating with EPA, researching PRP liability, and reaching a settlement with a co-liable party. Remediation evolved from site owner-led cleanup to a sale to another party and the remediation under Ohio’s Voluntary Action Program.  Sediment remediation is expected at the site.
    • In Toledo, Ohio, represented an individual client and, later, a group of parties at the Stickney and Tyler landfill sites. Represented the common interests of multiple parties in dealing with federal and state regulators and pressed those interests to successful resolution of complex issues.
    • In another joint defense representation, was part of a team defending a similarly situated industry group in a cost recovery action filed in federal court. The matter involved resolution of difficult factual allocation issues.
  • Credentials

    Education

    • Northwestern Pritzker School of Law, J.D., 1990
    • University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, B.S., Secondary Education, 1980, with honors

    Bar Admissions

    • Illinois
    • U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit
    • U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois

        Professional Memberships

        • American Bar Association
      • Insights

        TITLE
        Blog Post

        Shareholders Demand More Disclosure of Climate-Change Risks

        Schiff Hardin Energy & Environmental Law Adviser

        Article

        Villainy: The ExxonMobil Story

        American Bar Association

        Blog Post

        Four Issues Impacting Public Companies’ Climate Change Disclosures

        Schiff Hardin Energy & Environmental Law Adviser

        In The News
        Blog Post

        Energy Independence is Theme of Trump Environmental Plan

        Schiff Hardin Energy & Environmental Law Adviser

        Newsletter
        Blog Post

        Asbestos Among First Ten Chemicals to be Reviewed Under the Amended TSCA

        Schiff Hardin Energy & Environmental Law Adviser

        Event

        Hot Topics

        2016 Air Quality Management Conference

        Location:
        Oakbrook Terrace, Ill.
        Blog Post

        Clean Power Plan has its Day in Court

        Schiff Hardin Energy & Environmental Law Adviser

        Other Publications

        • “EPA Startup, Shutdown and Malfunction Event Rules Are Changing,” Schiff Hardin Insight (Dec. 12, 2014)
        • “D.C. Circuit Orders USEPA to Respond to Petition to Stop Carbon Rulemaking,” Schiff Hardin Insight (Sep. 23, 2014)
        • “Methane Emissions Regulations on the Horizon for the Oil and Gas Industry,” Schiff Hardin Insight (Aug. 2014)
        • “Supreme Court Limits USEPA's Greenhouse Gas Regulations‚ Refuses to Wave Goodbye to Separation of Power Principles,” Schiff Hardin Insight (Jun. 25, 2014)
        • “A Comprehensive Guide to Redeveloping Contaminated Property,” chapter on Illinois law in Brownfields, American Bar Association (2010)

        Speeches & Presentations

        • “Hot Topics,” (panelist) 2016 Air Quality Management Conference (Oct. 5, 2016)
        • “Are ISOs an Answer to Controlling Greenhouse Gas Emissions?” (co-presenter) 20th Annual FERC Briefing, Boston, Mass., and Chicago, Ill. (Apr. 4 and May 15, 2014)
        • “Coal on the Run?” (co-presenter) 19th Annual FERC Briefing, Chicago, Ill. (Jun. 13, 2013)

      Energy and Environmental Law Adviser

      Shareholders Demand More Disclosure of Climate-Change Risks

      One day before the U.S. withdrawal from the Paris Agreement, ExxonMobil shareholders overwhelmingly voted to require increased attention to and disclosure of the future impact of climate change on business expectations, while Chevron’s shareholders defeated similar proposals. The shareholder proposals called for more transparent reporting and disclosure of the underlying assumptions used to evaluate the...… Continue Reading

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      "Jane Montgomery: Part Detective, Part Engineer, All Lawyer"

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      "Redeveloping any parcel of property in an older community comes with risks, not the least of which is identifying potential environmental contamination that must be abated before development can occur." Read Article