Christopher B. (Kip) Power

Area of Emphasis

Kip Power is a shareholder in the Energy and Natural Resources and Litigation groups of Babst Calland. Mr. Power helps clients comply with environmental laws and defend related litigation while keeping their businesses running profitably. He regularly represents companies when permitting and enforcement disputes arise, and he has successfully negotiated favorable resolutions of a number of sensitive and company-critical matters under a wide range of federal and state environmental programs.

His regulatory practice encompasses counseling and representation on issues arising under, among other laws, the federal Clean Water Act, Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977 (SMCRA), Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act of 1980 (“Superfund”), National Environmental Policy Act, and related state analogues. He has also represented natural resource and utility clients in proceedings before the West Virginia Public Service Commission. Mr. Power is also a member of the firm’s Renewables Group and has assisted clients on matters such as the siting of renewable energy projects on post-mining properties, development of carbon capture and sequestration programs, and the proposed construction of a solar-powered controlled environment food production facility.

Mr. Power also defends lawsuits by private parties claiming they have been harmed by natural resource extraction and other industrial operations, including suits based on Superfund, RCRA and Clean Water Act claims and associated common law actions. Among the cases in which Mr. Power has served as counsel are: West Virginia Land Resources, Inc., et al. v. W. Va. Dept. of Environmental Protection, et al., No. 21-0845 (W.Va. Supreme Court; 2022) (addressing challenges to reissuance of underground injection control permit based on increased mine pool maintenance costs); W.Va. Dept. of Transportation v. CDS Family Trust, LLC, No. 16-1163 (W. Va. Supreme Court; 2017) (addressing standards for determining just compensation owed by the government for property that could serve as an environmental compensatory mitigation area), EQT Prod. Co. v. Wender, No. 16-1938 (4th Circuit 2017) (finding county ordinance was preempted by state environmental laws); and Ohio Valley Envtl. Coal. Inc. v. Maple Coal Company, Civil Action No. 3:11-0009 (S.D. W.Va. 2011) (successfully asserting that plaintiffs failed to establish standing to bring one of two Clean Water Act citizens suit claims). Recognizing the value of alternative dispute resolution, he also represents clients in mediation and arbitration, and was a party-selected arbitrator in a major mineral development dispute that involved nearly 50 hearing days.

Background

Mr. Power graduated, cum laude, from Washington and Lee University with his B.A.in Economics in 1983. He received his M.B.A from the West Virginia University College of Business and Economics in 1985 and his J.D. from the West Virginia University College of Law in 1986.

Memberships and Affiliations

Mr. Power is admitted to practice in West Virginia, Kentucky, the United States District Courts for the Northern and Southern Districts of West Virginia and the Eastern District of Kentucky, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth, Sixth, Ninth, and District of Columbia Circuits, and the U.S. Supreme Court. He is a member of the West Virginia Manufacturers Association, Gas and Oil Association of West Virginia, West Virginia Coal Association, Energy and Mineral Law Foundation, and the Defense Trial Counsel of West Virginia. He is also a volunteer with HospiceCare, Inc. and Legal Aid of West Virginia, and a member of Fairness West Virginia.

Mr. Power has been ranked among West Virginia’s top natural resources and environmental lawyers in Chambers USA’s America’s Leading Business Lawyers. He has been listed in The Best Lawyers of America© in the Environmental Law Section since 2003; Natural Resources Law Section since 2006; Mining Law Section since 2008; Energy Law Section since 2009; and Litigation – Environmental, Litigation – Land Use and Zoning, Litigation – Municipal, and Oil and Gas Law sections since 2011 by BL Rankings. Mr. Power was recognized as the Best Lawyers® 2019 Environmental Law “Lawyer of the Year,” 2020 Litigation – Environmental Law “Lawyer of the Year” and 2021 Natural Resources Law “Lawyer of the Year” in Charleston, W.Va. He has been selected to the West Virginia Super Lawyers list (Thomson Reuters) since 2007. Mr. Power is rated “AV Preeminent” (scoring 5 out of 5 – the highest rating for legal ability and ethical standards) by the Martindale-Hubbell Peer Review Rating System.

Publications/Presentations

Best Lawyers Award Badge LOTY Logo for Christopher B. Power
 LOTY Logo for Christopher B. PowerBest Lawyers Award Badge