In addition to his government relations practice, Hal counsels clients and handles litigation on a variety of natural resource issues. Having worked in the oil fields for Union Oil of California, as an associate geologist for Exxon USA in Midland, Texas, and having an academic background in geology (BS, University of Oklahoma), Hal understands the practical and technical issues that natural resources companies face. As a former legislator and AG, he knows the regulatory issues as well. He now provides legal advice, counsel and services to a number of private and independent oil and gas interests.
While in the New Mexico legislature, Hal was a member of the Energy and Natural Resources Committee where he served as vice chairman and the Radio Active Waste Consultation Committee. He handled and oversaw numerous natural resource issues while serving as New Mexico Attorney General, including successfully arguing the case of Cotton Petroleum v. State of New Mexico in the U.S. Supreme Court in 1988, and negotiating settlements on interstate water law compacts with neighboring states.
As part of a Brownstein team, he assists Intercontinental Potash Corp. with all aspects of developing one of the newest potash mine projects in the country, including guiding the company through the multi-year NEPA and the Endangered Species Act permitting process, and helping the company obtain all necessary federal, state and local permits—including all necessary air and water discharge permits, land use approvals and BLM and State leases. The firm also assists Intercontinental Potash Corp. with acquiring an adequate water supply to operate its water-intensive milling process.
Hal along with other Brownstein attorneys, also counsels Grupos Cementos de Chihuahua, a world-class company that produces, distributes and markets cement, ready-mixed concrete, aggregates, and innovative products related to the construction industries in Mexico and the United States, in all aspects of corporate law as well as regulatory and environmental work.