Press Release

Four Burns & Levinson Partners Named to 2024 Lawdragon Green 500: Leaders in Environmental Law

February 8, 2024


Boston, MA and Providence, RI, Feb. 8, 2024 – Burns & Levinson partners Sean Coffey, Peter Durning, Thomas Mackie, and John Shea have been selected for inclusion in the 2024 Lawdragon Green 500: Leaders in Environmental Law for their remarkable achievements in environmental law.

Sean Coffey is an environmental lawyer known for his creative work bringing innovative environmental infrastructure projects and public/private partnerships (P3) to fruition across the country, including new and upgraded drinking water and wastewater treatment facilities and a state-of-the-art nursing education center. His clients are involved in major energy projects, including hydro-power and off-shore wind energy facilities, transportation and intermodal facilities, as well as major commercial, residential and mixed-use projects, involving environmental, land use, and remediation and adaptive reuse of Brownfield sites throughout Rhode Island. Coffey was previously chairman of the Rhode Island House of Representatives Special Legislative P3 Commission, has served on numerous boards, and has won many legal and environmental awards. He received his J.D. from Boston University School of Law and his B.S.F.S. from Georgetown University.

Peter Durning is highly regarded for his deep expertise in water and wetlands related matters. He represents public companies, real estate developers, investors, small businesses, and municipalities in environmental litigation, enforcement defense, land use, and permitting. He handles a wide range of wetlands adjudicatory appeals, solid waste site assignment hearings, zoning disputes, citizen suits regarding stormwater discharges, U.S. EPA enforcement actions, permitting, business and transactional support, and local, state and federal permit proceedings and appeals. Durning recently served as Chair of the Environmental Business Council’s (EBC) Water Resources Committee and is active in the Solid Waste Management Committee. He received his J.D. from Boston College Law School and his B.A. from the University of Notre Dame.

Thomas Mackie is an environmental business lawyer representing businesses and municipalities facing complex environmental issues such as solid waste, recycling and renewable energy facility siting; hazardous waste cleanup; private and public environmental contracting; facility acquisition; environmental due diligence; host community agreements; cost recovery cases; and litigation of permit appeals. Mackie currently serves on the Commonwealth’s Solid Waste Advisory Committee, the Board of Directors of the Environmental Business Council of New England, and as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Keep Massachusetts Beautiful. He holds a J.D., cum laude, from Suffolk University Law School and a B.S. in biology from Hobart College.

John Shea is an environmental and land use attorney with a practice focused on permitting and appeals for wetlands, water. air emissions, and hazardous waste cleanup. He is known for his work securing approvals for complex and controversial projects, developing environmental compliance plans for pro-active and troubled companies, and successfully defending permits and enforcement actions in administrative and court appeals. Shea was the founding chair of both the Boston Bar Association’s Hazardous Waste Committee and the BBA’s Solid Waste Committee and the Recycling Task Force. He is the author of “Hazardous Waste Cleanup Law” in the Massachusetts Environmental Law treatise published by MCLE. He received his J.D. from the University of Maine Law School, his master’s degree in environmental law, cum laude, from Vermont Law School, and his B.S., cum laude, from Holy Cross College.

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