James T.B. Tripp

Senior Counsel


Areas of expertise: Ecosystems, rivers and deltas, trial-oriented litigation

James Tripp is a lawyer with extensive trial experience and has been admitted to the New York State Bar, the Southern and Eastern Districts of New York, several U.S. courts of appeal and the United States Supreme Court.

He has been engaged in state and federal efforts to restore the Mississippi River Delta in south Louisiana and bottomland hardwood resources in the lower Mississippi Basin for more than 40 years. Tripp has been a member of the Louisiana Governor’s Advisory Commission on Coastal Protection, Restoration and Conservation since 2002 and the Louisiana Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority Coastal Master Plan Framework Development Team since 2010. Tripp was a co-founder of the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana and has been a board member since its incorporation in 1987.

He also works on a wide range of land use, transportation, water resources, solid waste, ecosystem restoration and energy issues in the NY metropolitan region. His expertise led to his appointment to the New York State Department of Transportation’s Advisory Panel on Transportation Policy for 2025 (2004), New York Governor George Pataki’s Greenhouse Gas Task Force (2001-2002) and to Governor Pataki’s Superfund Work Group (1999-2000).

James helped to design a Transfer of Development Rights (TDR) program in the Long Island Pine Barrens and has also been extensively involved in land conservation and smart growth efforts in the Highlands ecosystem, which stretches from eastern Pennsylvania through New Jersey and New York into western Connecticut. James has worked with the California council on legal defense of major California transportation initiatives designed to reduce greenhouse emissions, including the defense of the California motor vehicle greenhouse gas emissions standard program to lower the carbon fuel standard.


L.L.B., Yale Law School; M.A. Philosophy, B.A. Yale University.

Chairs the board of New Partners for Community Revitalization and the Long Island Pine Barrens Clearinghouse Advisory Board. Formerly, he has chaired the Highlands Coalition Board and the New York City Water Board. He is a member of the Civitas Board and also serves on the Boards of the Tri-State (New York, New Jersey, & Connecticut) Transportation Campaign, the New York New Jersey Harper Coalition and the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana.

Author or co-author of numerous articles on wetland preservation, groundwater quality, solid waste, design of rights transfer systems, Cuba environmental law and NEPA reform. Recipient, Robert C. Stover Environmental Advocate Award, given by New York State Bar Association (1986), and was also an environmental advocates of New York Honoree in 2001. 

Assistant U.S. attorney, Southern District of New York (1968- 1973); summer volunteer, Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights Under Law (1967, 1968).

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