Allen Kacenjar’s practice encompasses all areas of environmental law with particular emphases in risk management counseling, regulatory advocacy, high-stakes environmental litigation, and complex environmental deal-making.

Allen’s primary focus is on crafting practical solutions that minimize his clients’ exposure to environmental liabilities. Allen has deep experience helping companies navigate the complex web of US environmental, health, and safety laws to achieve results that make both environmental and business sense. He routinely helps clients develop and implement strategies to improve compliance and avert enforcement risks before they arise. Where such problems already exist, Allen has extensive expertise helping clients resolve enforcement matters in creative ways that rebuild relationships with regulators while creating strategic business advantages. Where more amicable efforts fail, Allen consistently achieves favorable results for clients in environmental litigation – ranging from complex cost recovery matters involving numerous technical experts to nuanced regulatory appeals before the US Supreme Court and the US Courts of Appeals.

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  • Designed and implemented full-scale corporate audit program for international chemicals company, including system to track all findings, ensure protection of privileged communications, encourage prompt and proper resolution of concerns, and management of voluntary environmental disclosures.
  • Led internal TSCA compliance investigation for a specialty chemicals company, resulting in voluntary disclosure of identified concerns, negotiation of a consent agreement with minimal penalty and full ability to continue manufacture and use of products.
  • Successful resolution of potentially criminal air noncompliance concerns at major industrial complex without penalty through voluntary disclosure and proactive engagement with state regulators.
  • Advised manufacturer targeted by EPA MACT residual risk rulemakings of ways to mitigate testing costs, shape agency rulemaking efforts, and minimize risk of overreaching regulatory requirements.
  • Developed US climate change strategy for an international steel company, including assessment of the preferred regulatory approach, advocacy in support of that approach, and submission of comments on numerous rulemakings.
  • Guided major international manufacturer’s response to an agency enforcement air permitting initiative, securing the ability to continue operating while avoiding imposition of any penalty, and gaining credibility with regulators.
  • Designed product redistribution and recycling system for an international chemicals manufacturer with extended attention to RCRA, TSCA, and Department of Transportation implications; resolved related RCRA enforcement proceedings.
  • Assessed and avoided state and federal enforcement of PSD claims against international manufacturer by securing favorable permit modifications that eliminated compliance risk.
  • Securing US Army Corps and Ohio EPA permits necessary to enable development of a major hospital complex on a site with significant wetlands, endangered species, and other siting concerns.


  • Lead environmental counsel on hundreds of major corporate transactions requiring identification and valuation of environmental, health, and safety risks; negotiation of key contractual protections; and identification and resolution of compliance and permitting concerns.
  • Extensive efforts with all aspects of environmental insurance, including the negotiation of novel and complex coverages, the filing and management of claims.
  • Lead environmental underwriter for thousands of “Reps and Warranties” policies across all industries and jurisdictions.
  • Managed international legal and technical team charged with mitigating risk and cost of substantial environmental indemnity claims alleging historic contamination from divested operating and third-party disposal sites.
  • Counseled a large municipality regarding the US$100 million remediation and redevelopment of a historic automotive plant into a high-tech business incubator including resolution of intricate RCRA, Ohio VAP, TSCA, political and business concerns.
  • Secured significant grant funding to spur remediation of contaminated industrial property in a transaction uniquely structured to eliminate prospective environmental liability despite ongoing enforcement.


  • Secured victory before the US Supreme Court in landmark Superfund litigation resulting in the nationwide reassessment of contribution rights (Cooper v. Aviall, 543 U.S. 157 (2004)).
  • Defended two New York State agencies against citizen suit claims on issues of first impression involving US$500+ million in Clean Water Act funding for the state’s largest-ever infrastructure project while simultaneously pursuing affirmative relief against US EPA.
  • Secured a rare judicial stay by the Eighth Circuit US Court of Appeals on EPA's regional haze regulation of the taconite industry, thus allowing negotiated resolution to secure additional compliance and timing flexibility.
  • Defending a major amusement and water park against environmentalist citizen claims under Clean Water Act while simultaneously working to resolve state enforcement and permitting issues.
  • Secured vacatur of the US EPA Boiler MACT rule before the DC Circuit Court of Appeals on behalf of clients threatened with disproportionate regulatory impacts (NRDC v. EPA, 489 F.3d 1250 (DC Cir. 2007)).
  • Secured rare appellate stay of regional haze Federal Implementation Plan governing the taconite industry, enabling the negotiation of rulemaking changes necessary for successful implementation and continued operations.
  • Successfully resolved CERCLA litigation involving impacts from a century of operations at a major coke plant in Alabama. Following three separate appeals, the case was before the US District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania for a new allocation proceeding involving more than a dozen expert witnesses. Beazer East, Inc. v. The Mead Corporation, Case No. 91-0408 (W.D. Pa.).
  • Defending a manufacturing client from a US$35 million claim regarding a contaminated 116-city-block area in downtown South Bend, Indiana, involving the seminal interpretation of two statutes, four tort claims, and complex insurance disputes resulting in two Indiana Supreme Court decisions.


  • Case Western Reserve University, J.D., magna cum laude, Order of the Coif, Case Western Reserve Law Review, 1999
  • Miami University, B.S., 1996


  • Ohio, 1999


  • U.S. Supreme Court
  • U.S. Ct. of App., Third Circuit
  • U.S. Ct. of App., Fifth Circuit
  • U.S. Ct. of App., Sixth Circuit
  • U.S. Ct. of App., Eighth Circuit
  • U.S. Ct. of App., District of Columbia Circuit
  • U.S. Dist. Ct., N. Dist. of Ohio
  • U.S. Dist. Ct., W. Dist. of Pennsylvania
  • U.S. Dist. Ct., N. Dist. of Texas
  • U.S. Ct. of App., Seventh Circuit

Memberships & Affiliations

  • Member of the Ohio State Bar Association’s Environmental Law Section
  • Member of the National Brownfield Association
  • Listed as a key lawyer for Environment: Regulatory by The Legal 500 US 2023
  • Ranked in Chambers USA 2023 for Natural Resources & Environment in Ohio
  • Recognized in The Best Lawyers in America 2023: Environmental Law and Environmental Litigation and identified as the 2023 Lawyer of the Year in Environmental Litigation in Cleveland
  • Listed in The Best Lawyers in America, an honor based on an exhaustive peer-review process, since 2018
  • Recognized as a Rising Star in Ohio Super Lawyers – Rising Stars, a distinction that recognizes the top 2.5 percent of Ohio lawyers under the age of 40 or those in practice for 10 years or less 
  • Profiled in 2009 by Inside Business in its High Bars feature, a listing of 15 Northeast Ohio lawyers who are making a difference in their firms and communities

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  • “Spread It Around: Best Practices in Risk Allocation“ presented at American Bar Association’s Environmental Transactions Masterclass, June 2023
  • “SSM Exemptions and EPA’s 2015 SIP Call,” presented to Air & Waste Management Association, June 2019.
  • “Summary of TSCA Legal Challenges,” presented at Ohio Chemistry Tech Council (OCTC) Workshop, August 2018.
  • “Strategies in Managing Risk in Environmental and Transactional Insurance” webinar, August 2018.
  • “US EPA and TSCA in the New Administration: What it Means for You,” presented with panel members at TSCA Seminar, August 2017.
  • “The Lautenberg Act: TSCA Reform Implications,” presented at Midwest Environmental Compliance Conference (MECC) Seminar, November 2016.

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