Attorneys

HeadshotAlexander J. E. English is the founder and managing attorney of GreenSpring Legal, LLC. A graduate of Vermont Law School, Mr. English has extensive experience with environmental law and policy, and, in particular, with water law. He has dealt with the full spectrum of water law, from permitting issues, regulatory comments and challenges, stormwater management, and environmental enforcement issues. In addition to his work enforcing the Clean Water Act and other environmental statutes via citizen suits, his practice includes administrative proceedings and litigation under the Administrative Procedure Act and the Freedom of Information/Privacy Act, land use and zoning matters, and contract law.

Concurrent with his J.D. from Vermont Law School, Mr. English earned a Master’s in Environmental Law and Policy and a Certificate in Water Law. He holds a B.A. in Linguistics from the University of Georgia, and served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Bulgaria from 2007-2009. He is licensed to practice in Maryland State Courts, the Federal District and Bankruptcy Courts for the District of Columbia and the District of Maryland, the Court of Federal Claims, and the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. He also serves as a Committee Member for the Agricultural Law Section of the Maryland State Bar Association.

Mr. English lives in Cloverly, MD, with his wife, daughter, and pets.

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Recent Posts

Ellicott City Flood

This past Saturday’s flash-flooding in Ellicott City is heartbreaking, and our hearts go out to the victims. GreenSpring Legal is proud to be a donor to the Ellicott City Partnership‘s campaign to assist the flood victims. Those of you who wish to assist may donate here.

This flood comes as a tragic reminder of the impacts that development has on a watershed’s capacity to process storm events; particularly high-intensity storm events.  Ellicott City has historically suffered a major flood (from either the Patapsco River or Tiber Creek) about once every ten years (more or less), but this was beyond anything in living memory (approximately 6″ of rain in 2 hours translates to a thousand-year storm event for even a 3-hour storm).  The City was originally a mill town, and the river running through it has been strictly channelized, leading to faster water flow and nowhere for floodwaters to spread out and dissipate their force.

When faced with a storm event of this caliber, though, even a separate storm sewer system is likely to be inadequate, and the victims have to deal with the environmental health hazards of contaminated water (in addition to the fact that there is quite a lot of rapidly-moving water where it’s not supposed to be).  The “Smart Growth” initiative is laudable, but the current approach encourages densities beyond anything our current stormwater infrastructure can handle.  Here in the Mid-Atlantic region (as well as the New England region), we are likely to see an increasing frequency of high-intensity storm events due to climate change. It is vital that we adjust our approach to development accordingly, or this tragedy is likely to repeat itself across the Eastern Seaboard in various forms.

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