Photograph of David Chung

David Chung


David Chung is a partner in Crowell & Moring's Environment & Natural Resources Group. His practice focuses on litigation, regulatory advocacy, and regulatory counseling involving major environmental statutes. David has experience handling matters arising under various environmental and public lands statutes, including the Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act, Endangered Species Act, National Environmental Policy Act, Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act, Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act, Resource Conservation and Recovery Act, and Federal Land Policy and Management Act. 

David also regularly handles or advises clients on litigation arising under the Administrative Procedure Act. He has extensive experience litigating in federal courts and representing clients in a wide range of proceedings before federal agencies.

His 2020 Chambers and Partners review states, “David is valued by clients as ‘incredibly smart; he’s a very good writer who is good at accurately assessing the strengths and weaknesses of a case.’”

Current representative matters include:

  • Serving as counsel to a multi-industry coalition on regulatory, legislative, and litigation developments concerning the scope of federal regulatory authority under the Clean Water Act. 
  • Representing a national trade association as petitioner in a declaratory judgment proceeding before the Surface Transportation Board requesting a finding that the Interstate Commerce Commission Termination Act of 1995 preempts and displaces imposition of the Clean Water Act’s discharge prohibition and NPDES permitting requirements to rail cars in transit.
  • Representing a national trade association in developing extensive legal and technical comments on Clean Air Act new source performance standards and in D.C. Circuit litigation challenging the final standards.
  • Advising a national agricultural trade association on regulatory proposals and APA litigation involving the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s conservation compliance programs.
  • Representing national trade associations serving agriculture, forestry, manufacturing, electric utilities, and mining in advocacy efforts regarding various Clean Water Act regulatory proposals.
  • Serving as counsel to an agricultural industry group on key regulatory, litigation, and policy matters involving nutrient regulation under the Clean Water Act and other environmental statutes.
  • Representing a company in an EPA investigation into compliance with federal consent decree obligations (CAA enforcement case).
  • Representing electric power trade associations as amici in federal district court and Ninth Circuit litigation challenging the Army Corps of Engineers’ Nationwide Permit 12.

Prior noteworthy engagements include:

  • Representing two associations serving Alaska Native regional and village corporations as intervenor-defendants in federal district court litigation under the APA challenging the Secretary of Treasury’s determination of which “Tribal governments” are eligible for relief funds under Title V of the CARES Act.
  • Preparing Supreme Court, Ninth Circuit, and Sixth Circuit amicus briefs on behalf of coalitions of trade associations regarding the applicability of the Clean Water Act to discharges to navigable waters via groundwater.
  • Advising a company on potential grounds to bring an APA challenge to the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s efforts to recall infant inclined sleeper products.
  • Representing several national trade associations as amici in Sixth Circuit litigation seeking to subject PHMSA’s approval of oil spill response plans to NEPA review and ESA consultation.
  • Providing environmental due diligence on numerous acquisitions of gas, wind, and solar generating facilities.
  • Representing two national agricultural trade associations in D.C. Circuit litigation and in regulatory advocacy regarding an EPA CERCLA/EPCRA administrative reporting exemption rule.
  • Defending a Clean Water Act citizen suit brought against the boards of supervisors of three counties as trustees for several drainage districts.
  • Litigation for several national and state trade associations against EPA challenging numeric nutrient water quality criteria for Florida's lakes and flowing waters as contrary to the APA and Clean Water Act.
  • Litigation for several national trade associations in federal district court and the Third Circuit against EPA challenging the Chesapeake Bay Total Maximum Daily Load as contrary to the APA and Clean Water Act.
  • Representing dozens of national and state trade associations in litigation challenging EPA's denial of a petition for rulemaking to establish numeric nutrient water quality criteria in all fifty states.
  • Defending an electric utility owner in federal district court and the Third Circuit in a Clean Air Act civil enforcement action brought by EPA and several states for alleged New Source Review and Title V violations.
  • Litigation for a mining company in federal district court and the Ninth Circuit against EPA challenging the Agency's novel exercise of its Section 404(c) veto authority.
  • Litigation for a national trade association in numerous D.C. Circuit challenges to EPA rulemakings implementing the Renewable Fuel Standard program.
  • Defending a coal company in a Clean Water Act citizen suit related to coal loading operations.
  • Litigation for the National Mining Association against EPA and the Army Corps of Engineers in federal district court and the D.C. Circuit challenging a series of agency actions as contrary to the APA, Clean Water Act, NEPA, and Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act.

David recently served for two years as a co-chair of the ABA Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources (SEER) Water Quality and Wetlands Committee. Before that, he served as vice chair (Electronic Communications & Social Media) and as vice chair (Committee Liaison to Annual Water Law Conference) of the ABA SEER Water Quality and Wetlands Committee.

David graduated from the University of Texas at Austin in 2002, where he earned a B.A. from the Plan II Honors Program. He earned his law degree at the George Washington University Law School in 2005, graduating with honors. While in law school, David served as the senior notes editor of the Public Contract Law Journal. In 2005, he co-chaired and co-authored the competition problem for the McKenna Long & Aldridge "Gilbert A. Cuneo" Government Contracts Moot Court Competition.


  • University of Texas at Austin, B.A. (2002)
  • The George Washington University Law School, J.D. (2005) with honors


Admitted to practice: District of Columbia; Maryland; Supreme Court of the United States; U.S. Courts of Appeals for the District of Columbia, Fourth, Sixth, Seventh, Ninth, Tenth, and Federal Circuits; U.S. Court of Appeals for Veterans Claims; U.S. District Courts for the District of Colorado, District of Columbia, and Northern District of Florida.

Professional Memberships

  • American Bar Association, Section on Environment, Energy & Resources
  • Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation
  • Energy & Mineral Law Foundation

View More

Energy Groups Ask Court To Revive $500M Power Line Project Law360 (April 27, 2022)
Press Coverage
"Here We Go Again: WOTUS Developments Before the Agencies and the Supreme Court," National Association of Clean Water Agencies Webinar (February 22, 2022). Panelist: David Chung.
Ag Response to WOTUS Not as Aggressive Progressive Farmer (February 17, 2022)
Press Coverage
"Definition of ‘Waters of the United States’: More Clarity or Confusion on the Horizon?" 2022 National Association of State Department of Agriculture Winter Policy Conference (February 15, 2022). Presenter: David Chung.
“Top Legal Developments of the Year for Utilities,” 2021 National Clean Water Law & Enforcement Hybrid Event. (November 18, 2021). Speakers: David Chung.
Chambers USA 2021 Ranks 63 Crowell & Moring Lawyers and 30 Practice Areas Among Best in U.S. (May 20, 2021)
Firm News / Announcement
"WOTUS: Clarity and Predictability at Last or Just Another Swing of the Pendulum?" Environmental Business Council of New England (EBC) Water Resources Webinar (December 8, 2020). Presenter: David Chung.
"Infrastructure In Focus: A Deep Dive Look at Water Infrastructure Opportunities and Risks - Part 2," Crowell & Moring Webinar (December 7, 2020). Presenters: David Chung, Evan D. Wolff, Byron R. Brown, and Paul Freeman.
"D.C. District Court Denies Stay in FOIA Case, Authorizing Release of PPP Borrower Names and Amounts as Soon as December 1," Government Contracts Bullet Points (November 25, 2020). Contacts: Amy Laderberg O'Sullivan, Daniel W. Wolff, David Chung, Olivia Lynch, Michael E. Samuels
Client Alert / Newsletter
"The Supreme Court Has Created a New CWA Permitting Test…Now What?" National Association of Clean Water Agencies 2020 National Clean Water Law & Enforcement Virtual Event (November 19, 2020). Panelist: David Chung.

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Crowell & Moring LLP is an international law firm with offices in the United States, Europe, MENA, and Asia that represents clients in litigation and arbitration, regulatory and policy, and transactional and corporate matters. The firm is internationally recognized for its representation of Fortune 500 companies in high-stakes litigation and government-facing matters, as well as its ongoing commitment to pro bono service and diversity, equity, and inclusion.

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