Aerospace, Satellites and Defense Systems Sectors
Aerospace, satellite and defense systems companies play a critical role in our nation’s economy. The Department of Commerce estimates aerospace contributed over $118 billion in exports to the economy in 2012 alone. An estimated 500,000 Americans work in jobs related to the aerospace industry and an additional 700,000 work in related fields. Aerospace industry subsectors include large civil aircraft (LCA), rotorcraft, commercial space, general aviation (GA), engines, unmanned aircraft systems (UAS), airport infrastructure/aviation security, alternative aviation fuels, and supply chain.
Companies looking to grow their businesses in this sector face many challenges. This sector faces global competition, technological advances, and complex regulatory standards. Businesses require skilled legal counsel who understand their operations and can successfully maneuver through a complex regulatory landscape.
Environmental Laws and Regulations Governing the Industry
Companies operating in the aerospace, satellite and defense system sector face unique and difficult legal and regulatory issues. However, global collaboration within the industry and with regulators has led to workable solutions for many of these complex environmental challenges. For example, corporations in these segments of the economy have joined together to develop chemical use and common standards for the global supply chain. Companies have combined their efforts to identify safer alternatives for hazardous materials, such as halon, used in the manufacturing and operating of aircraft, space and defense systems.
Various regulatory schemes require companies in the aerospace, satellite and defense systems sectors to identify and report the chemicals and other substances that suppliers around the globe use in manufacturing millions of parts for aircraft and defense products. The industry’s global supply chain includes materials that could be subject to SEC reporting under the Dodd-Frank Act, such as products that contain conflict minerals or involve climate change impacts.
Aerospace, Satellites and Defense Systems and Waste Management
Aerospace, satellite and defense companies must meet increasing challenges with waste management, permitting and regulatory standards for all manufacturing operations. It is important to recognize that historical operations of legacy companies often leave successor corporations in the industry with cleanup obligations and liabilities. For example, historical operations have often left behind contamination from defense products built during World War II. Despite the need for these defense products and the fact that manufacturing operations followed the regulatory requirements of the time, CERCLA imposes joint and several strict liability on the corporate successor of any company that owned or operated a site that became contaminated, and/or generated or arranged for disposal of hazardous waste from manufacturing operations. Remediation costs in connection with these historical sites can reach billions of dollars.
Strategic Guidance for the Aerospace, Satellites and Defense Systems Industries
Bick Law offers a full range of environmental law services to companies in the aerospace, satellite and defense systems industries. We represent manufacturing companies, suppliers, defense contractors, technology companies and other businesses on a regional, national and global level. Our California environmental lawyers are familiar with the environmental, business and financial issues our clients face. They deliver the strategic guidance companies need to address these challenges.
We work to establish compliance programs and site remediation plans that meet the requirements of federal, state and local governments. We focus on identifying and addressing concerns before they result in costly legal problems. When disputes cannot be resolved, our attorneys vigorously advocate on behalf of our clients. We have experience in federal and state enforcement actions, citizen suits, common law toxic tort actions and criminal actions. We assist aerospace, satellite and defense system companies in commercial transactions. In addition, we help to secure the permits and certifications our clients need to operate their businesses.