Michael Mahoney


How I represent clients at Schwabe

I help clients to address complex environmental and sustainability issues, with a focus on environmental compliance and carbon transactions.

My experience encompasses advice to clients on the environmental aspects of corporate and real estate transactions and environmental regulatory matters. These can include obtaining permits, auditing, compliance program development, responding to government information requests, investigations and enforcement actions, and citizen suit defense. Well-versed in environmental law and equipped with a business-focused approach, I help my clients foresee risks and evaluate the best paths to reach their objectives.

I regularly counsel clients on the development of carbon projects, purchase and sale of offset credits and allowances, carbon offset registry compliance matters, carbon disclosure obligations, and voluntary and compliance carbon markets. I also assist them to navigate broader environmental, social, and governance (ESG) issues, including ESG reporting and disclosure, ESG due diligence, and corporate sustainability programs.

Strongly committed to pro bono work, I focus my efforts on initiatives that enhance environmental and social governance. For example, I’ve performed in-country work in Cambodia and Myanmar and desk-based work for projects in Afghanistan and Malawi.


  • Advised investor in acquisition of portfolio of power plants, including negotiating environmental contractual terms, conducting environmental due diligence, and coordinating permit transfers.
  • Represented carbon developer in improved forest management, reforestation, and afforestation carbon projects under the American Carbon Registry, Climate Action Reserve, and Verra programs.
  • Advised operator of glass recycling facilities in response to California Department of Toxic Substances Control notice of violation.
  • Counseled fuels supplier on compliance with Washington’s Climate Commitment Act and Clean Fuels Standard.
  • Counseled property owners seeking regulatory closure following voluntary cleanup of ‎contaminated properties under the Washington Model Toxics Control Act.
  • Assisted industrial contractor with Clean Water Act citizen suit defense.


  • Georgetown University, Law Center, Juris Doctor degree (2014)‎, Bachelor of Arts degree, Linguistics, magna cum laude ‎‎(2006)‎


  • California State Courts
  • Oregon State Courts
  • Washington State Courts


  • King County Bar Association, Environmental and Land Use Law Section, Member (2021 – present), Co-Chair (2023 – present)
  • American Bar Association’s Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources, Waste and Resource Recovery Committee, Articles Vice-Chair (2021 – 2022)
  • Washington ‎State Bar, Environmental and Land Use Section, Member
  • California Lawyers Association, Environmental Law Section, Member

Additional Publications

Making and Keeping Corporate Climate Commitments, Law360, Co-Author, August 11-12, 2020

Additional Events

“Environmental and Real Estate Transactional Role in Entitlements,” Permitting Strategies CLE, The Seminar Group, December 1, 2021

Community Activities

  • Georgetown University and Georgetown University Law Center, Alumni Admissions Program Volunteer (2015 – present)
  • Asian Research Institute for Environmental Law, Pro Bono Volunteer (2021-present)

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