Paul J. Bruder, Jr.


(717) 231-5280 | Fax: (717) 236-1816


  • Pennsylvania Bar Association, Environment and Natural Resources Section
  • Dauphin County Bar Association

Awards & Recognition


Paul Bruder is a shareholder in the Environmental Law and Litigation group of Mette, Evans & Woodside, practicing out of the firm’s Harrisburg office. Paul joined Mette Evans after 20 years at Rhoads & Sinon, where he served as the Chair of its Environmental Practice Group.

Paul previously served as an attorney with the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection. Over the course of his career, Paul has established himself as a leader in the field of environmental, natural resource and energy law in Pennsylvania.

Paul concentrates much of his practice in the areas of waste management and planning, stormwater management, sewage planning, treatment and disposal, storage tanks, and remediation. He represents a broad range of clients, from sewage and water treatment companies, municipal entities, developers, waste disposal and recycling companies, and fuel storage and dispensing operations on a broad range of environmental issues including permitting, water supply and treatment and resource development. Paul has extensive environmental litigation experience representing clients before the Environmental Hearing Board in Pennsylvania and in trial and appellate courts. In administrative proceedings, he has represented clients challenging permits, contesting civil penalties and compliance orders, and defending against challenges brought by citizens’ groups, among other matters.

Paul also regularly handles NPDES permitting matters and appeals; defends citizens’ suits under the federal Clean Water Act and similar state laws; and represents landowners and others with respect to groundwater protection issues. A substantial part of his practice concentrates on municipal sewage planning and permitting, stormwater management and related development issues facing developers, municipalities and municipal authorities. He serves as special environmental counsel to many municipalities, authorities and developers throughout Pennsylvania.

Paul’s practice also covers the cleanup and redevelopment of industrial sites under federal and state hazardous waste and brownfields laws. In Pennsylvania, for example, he regularly counsels clients in the purchase, sale and cleanup of property using the Land Recycling Act (Act 2) to address environmental concerns. He also conducts and reviews environmental audits of various types of industrial, commercial and mining properties for buyers, sellers, lenders and trustees, and negotiates environmental provisions of transactions, contracts and deeds.

Paul also ties his environmental practice into the agricultural industry, representing a number of both small family farms, and large CAFO operations with stormwater, permitting and air quality issues.

Memberships and Affiliations

Mr. Bruder is admitted to practice in Pennsylvania and the Eastern and Middle District of Pennsylvania Federal Courts.

He serves or has served on the following Boards and Committees:

  • Chesapeake Bay Executive Council – Citizens Advisory Committee
  • Pennsylvania Watershed Implementation Plan Phase III Stormwater Workgroup
  • PaDEP Science Advisory Board Process Subcommittee
  • Professional Recyclers of Pennsylvania (PROP)
  • Pennsylvania Bar Association, Environment and Natural Resources Section
  • Dauphin County Bar Association
  • City of Harrisburg Civil Service Commission
  • Camp Hill Borough Stormwater Authority
  • Camp Hill Lion Foundation
  • Canine Rescue of Central PA
  • Helen O. Krause Animal Foundation


Paul has been recognized as a Preeminent Attorney in the area of Environmental Law by Martindale Hubble.  He is a frequent lecturer on environmental law and has published articles on environmental law and environmental science in various journals, newsletters and other publications.  A recent listing includes the following:

  • Author, “Winter Brings Familiar Dangers” – October 2002
  • Author, “It’s Not Nice to Regulate Mother Nature” – February 2008
  • Author, “Municipal Stormwater – Don’t Get Caught with Your BMPs Down” – Municipal Reporter, Pennsylvania Municipal League, 2011
  • Author, “The Tank Act and Indemnification Fund” – 2011
  • Presenter, Brownfield Basics – PA Brownfields Conference, 2011
  • Author, “Doing Business in the Marcellus Play” – PA Business Central, 2011
  • Author, “What Should I Do With My Unused Storage Tank?” – Legal Corner, Central Penn Business Journal, November 2012
  • Presenter, Environmental Law Forum, Harrisburg PA – Stormwater and Wet Weather, April, 2013
  • Author, “Stormwater Update – Is a ‘Rain Tax’ Right for your Municipality” – Municipal Reporter, Pennsylvania Municipal League, May 2013
  • Co-Author, “CWA Ruling Could Be National Victory For Municipalities” – The Legal Intelligencer, September 30, 2013.
  • Presenter, Marcellus Shale Environmental Law Update – Pennsylvania State Association of Boroughs, 2013
  • Presenter, Half Moon Seminars – Water Law in Pennsylvania, 2013
  • Author, “What is an Environmental Covenant?” – Legal Corner, Central Penn Business Journal, February 2016
  • Presenter, Power Plant Decommissioning Conference – Philadelphia 2016
  • Presenter, Chesapeake Bay TMDL Agricultural Requirements – Agricultural Law Forum, 2016
  • Presenter, Municipal MS4 Permitting Compliance Update, American Planning Association, Pennsylvania Chapter – 2017
  • Author, “Municipal Stormwater Permitting Deadlines Fast Approaching” – Legal Corner, Central Penn Business Journal – March 2017
  • Presenter, Municipal MS4 Permitting Compliance Update, Northeast Region Pennsylvania Municipal League – April 2018
  • Presenter, Municipal MS4 Permitting Compliance Update, PA State Association of Township Supervisors, Municipal Solicitors Annual Conference – May 2018
  • Presenter, Municipal MS4 Permitting Compliance Update, Association for PA Municipal Management – September 2018
  • Presenter, PA Farm Bureau – “Environmental Issues In Agriculture” -January 2020

Significant Decisions:

Oley Twp. v. DEP and Stauffer Reifsneider, EHB Docket No. 96-198-MG (Counsel to DEP)

  • Trial Adjudication July 30, 1997
  • DEP ordered Township to revise official sewage plan to include development. Township appealed.
  • After trial, Board adjudicated that developer’s sewage planning module was consistent with the township’s official plan and that the township did not sustain its burden of proving that the proposed subdivision would cause a violation of the safe drinking water standard

Harriman Coal Corp. V. DEP, EHB Docket No.  98-235-C  (Counsel to Harriman)

  • Opinion and Order on DEP’s Motion to Dismiss denied, July 21, 2000
  • Harriman appealed and subsequently complied with a DEP order before the matter was heard, and DEP lifted the order. DEP moved to dismiss the appeal as moot.
  • Harriman argued, and EHB agreed, that Harriman continued to have a stake in an appeal even after the order has been lifted as a result of the penalty escalation provisions

Gallagher v. East Buffalo Twp.  Docket# 4:12-cv-00777 (Counsel to Township)

  • Middle District of Pennsylvania, Memorandum Opinion August 29, 2013.
  • Federal court granted defense motion for summary judgment and dismissed Clean Water Act complaint against municipality related to unpermitted stormwater discharges to privately owned property.

Waste Management et al v. DEP and Clearfield County, Docket No. 1237 CD 2014 (Counsel to Clearfield County)

  • Commonwealth Court Opinion January 8, 2015.
  • Court upheld lower court’s denial of Waste Management’s summary judgment motion, held that Clearfield County’s Solid Waste Plan was properly bid, awarded and approved.

Fuedale v. DEP and Aqua Pennsylvania, Inc. EHB Docket No. 2016-110-C (Counsel to Aqua)

  • Order denying Petition to Appeal nunc pro tunc.  October 25, 2016
  • Appellant/petitioner did not demonstrate fraud, breakdown in the administrative process, or any unique and compelling non-negligent circumstances justifying the allowance of an untimely appeal of an NPDES permit issued to Aqua

Hubley Twp. v. Wetzel et al, Docket No. 899 CD 2017 consolidated (Counsel to Hubley Twp)

  • Commonwealth Court – unreported opinion May 22, 2018.
  • Commonwealth Court reversed Environmental Hearing Board adjudication regarding a challenge to a joint sewage facilities plan.
  • Lower court: Wetzel et al v DEP, Hegins Township and Hubley Township – EHB Docket No. 2015-071

 Muth v. DEP and Eureka Resources.  EHB Docket No. 2022-015 (Counsel to Eureka)

  • Opinion and Order granting Eureka’s Motion to Dismiss, June 3, 2022.
  • Appellant denied Constitutional and representational standing based solely on her position as an elected official.

PA Waste LLC and DEP v. Clearfield County, Docket Nos. 762 CD 2021/771 CD 2021 (Counsel to Clearfield County)

  • Commonwealth Court Opinion (October 4, 2022) affirming lower court’s grant of summary judgment to Clearfield County, striking landfill permit issued by DEP due to non-compliance with statutory and regulatory requirements.
  • Lower Court – Clearfield County v. DEP and PA Waste LLC, EHB Docket No. 2020-016.

Representative clients:

Altoona Water Authority
Aqua Pennsylvania
Ball Inc.
Clearfield County (PA)
Crossroads XOX LLC
Dauphin County (PA)
Eureka Resources LLC
Herbruck’s Poultry Ranch
Infinity Capital LLC
John E. Groninger Inc.
Jones Manure Hauling
Jones Family Farms
Matter Family Farms
Northpoint Development
PA Insurance Department/USTIF
Penn National Gaming
Quarryville Resorts, LP
Renewable Natural Products Inc.
University Area Joint Authority
Wolf Farms Inc.
Woolrich, Inc.
Zook’s Septic Service

Multiple other development companies, waste management companies, recycling companies, municipalities and municipal authorities


  • University of Dayton School of Law, J.D.
  • Lebanon Valley College, B.S.

Court Admissions

  • Pennsylvania
  • U.S. District Courts:
    • Eastern District of PA
    • Middle District of PA

Articles & Media

Chesapeake Bay Settlement Becomes Final

Chesapeake Bay Settlement Becomes Final

A lawsuit brought by multiple governmental entities, interest groups and individuals against the EPA in 2020 alleged that the EPA was not enforcing Pennsylvania’s obligations to help reduce pollution flowing to the Chesapeake Bay.

Forever Chemicals More Prevalent Than Originally Believed

Forever Chemicals More Prevalent Than Originally Believed

A newly released study by the U.S. Geological Survey has found that at least 45% of the nation’s tap water could be contaminated with at least one form of PFAS, unaffectionately  known as “forever chemicals.”

Pennsylvania Adopts PFAS Standards

Pennsylvania Adopts PFAS Standards

Pennsylvania has enacted a statewide drinking water limit on PFAS, two forms of highly toxic chemicals, nicknamed “forever chemicals.” The rule sets a limit of 14 parts per trillion for perfluorooctanoic acid and 18 parts per trillion for perfluorooctane sulfonic acid, and applies to all 3,117 water systems in the Commonwealth. 

The Law of “Constitutional Standing” Taking Shape in Pennsylvania

The Law of “Constitutional Standing” Taking Shape in Pennsylvania

The past decade has seen the re-emergence of Article I, Section 27 of the Pennsylvania Constitution, known as the Environmental Rights Amendment, or “ERA” as a stand-alone cause of action for challenges to actions of the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, and other federal and state agencies and commissions.