M. Trent Zivkovich

M. Trent Zivkovich

T: 410.347.8778
F: 410.223.4167

Mr. Zivkovich leads the firm’s transactional environmental law practice and is co-chair of its Clean Energy Technology Group. He provides comprehensive environmental law services to clients in transactional, land development, regulatory compliance and litigation matters. He guides business and corporate clients through significant acquisition and financing matters and provides advice in contracting, succession planning and restructuring efforts. He is active in the real estate field, especially the purchase, divestment and redevelopment of brownfields sites and environmentally sensitive properties. 

Mr. Zivkovich is a former licensed professional geologist, environmental consultant and commercial builder.


  • Listed in Maryland Super Lawyers as a "Rising Star," 2017
  • Recipient: Baltimore Curriculum Project Outstanding Business Volunteer Award, 2014

Memberships & Activities

  • Co-Chair: WTP's Clean Energy Technology Group
  • Past Chair: Environmental Law Section, Maryland State Bar Association, 2011-12 
  • Licensed Professional Geologist, North Carolina, License No. 1712 (inactive)
  • Member: NAIOP Legislative Committee
  • Member: Section of Energy, Environment, and Resources, American Bar Association
  • Member: Board of Governors, Gilman School Alumni Association
  • Member: Program and Safety Committee, Baltimore Chesapeake Bay Outward Bound School
  • Member: Sustainable Fisheries Goal Implementation Team, Chesapeake Bay Program
  • Past Chair: Government Relations Committee, Coastal Conservation Association Maryland; Member, Board of Directors, Coastal Conservation Association Maryland
  • Member: 2013 GIVE Class, Business Volunteers Unlimited Maryland
  • Former Instructor: Environmental Law for Engineers and Scientists, Johns Hopkins University Whiting School of Engineering, Engineering for Professionals Program
  • Past Chair: St. David's Church Stewardship Committee


Representative matters include advice and counsel on:

  • Environmental regulatory requirements in new and brownfield redevelopment projects, including state voluntary cleanup programs
  • Significant asset and stock deals for international, national and local businesses, including due diligence reviews and evaluation of real estate holdings, permits and authorizations, regulatory compliance and environmental management systems
  • Federal, state and local review of NPDES, tidal & non-tidal wetland, storm water, solid waste, oil operations, Title V and air operations and land development permit applications
  • Administrative and judicial challenges to permit decisions and enforcement actions
  • Government investigations and enforcement efforts under federal Superfund, RCRA, Clean Water Act, Clean Air Act and various state underground storage tank programs throughout the U.S.
  • Environmental-related contractual and tort actions in federal and state courts and state prosecutions for alleged environmental violations

Business & Corporate Law / Mergers & Acquisitions

Mr. Zivkovich serves as outside General Counsel to multiple clients in the chemical, heavy lifting and service industries.  Additionally, for a wide variety of national and international clients, he is an experienced advisor on:

  • Corporate structure and form, funding opportunities and general strategies for growth
  • Significant business reorganizations, mergers, acquisitions, sales and refinancing efforts
  • Professional, service and supply contracts
  • Transfer and assignment of critical operational permits and governmental authorizations required for transactions and reorganizations through multiple local, state and federal government agencies

Real Estate Development, Leasing & Land Use

Representative matters include advice and counsel on:

  • Regulatory and design requirements associated with brownfield redevelopment projects
  • Purchase agreements, leases, easements and restrictive covenants for industrial, commercial and residential properties and undeveloped land
  • Proposed storm water, erosion and sediment control and other environmental regulations and associated state permits
  • Funding opportunities and tax incentives involving investments in energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies
  • Direct appeals and credit applications for local stormwater fees, known by some as the “rain tax,” on behalf of commercial and industrial clients throughout Maryland
  • Advocacy before Maryland Legislative and Executive branch officials on environmental and natural resource management issues impacting the Chesapeake Bay and various stakeholders

Clean Energy Technology

  • Advise start up clean energy technology ventures in business organization, strategic planning, intellectual property and patent considerations and funding options
  • Advise clean energy startups in regulatory issues pertaining to FERC, PJM and state public service commission regulatory matters

Environmental and Construction Project Management

  • Former Project Manager for national environmental consulting firms
    • Oversaw investigation and remediation of dozens of properties occupied by ExxonMobil in the Washington, DC, metropolitan area
    • Directed remediation of a chlorinated solvent release at a Superfund site in North Carolina
    • Completed more than 150 Phase I/II Environmental Site Assessments for real estate transactions and corporate due diligence efforts throughout the U.S.
  • Former Project Manager for a regional commercial builder and developer
    • Directed construction of 500,000+ square feet of commercial, office and retail space
    • Directed construction of one of the first commercial buildings built in Maryland to standards established by the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED certification program

Author: Stormwater Utility Fees Wash Over Maryland, ICSC Shopping Center Legal Update, Vol. 34, Issue 2, Summer 2014

Author: S.C. Dep't of Health & Envtl Control v. Commerce & Indus. Ins. Co.; The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit Holds that RCRA's Direct Action Provision May Not be Used to Secure Cost Recovery and Contribution for Corrective Action Initiated Under CERCLA, 12 U. Balt. J. Envtl. L. 87 (Fall 2004) 

Frequent lecturer and author regarding the policy and issues underlying and practical application of Maryland’s local stormwater fees (known by some as the “rain tax”), stormwater management and erosion & sediment control requirements, the Chesapeake Bay Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) and other environmental considerations impacting land use and development


The State Acts: the Environmental Impact on Business, 2013 and 2014

The close of 2013 saw several developments in environmental regulatory matters that Maryland businesses and individuals should consider as they make plans for the coming year and beyond.  A common theme in many of these state programs and initiatives is the role and cost of stormwater management and how many of them are connected to and dependent on one another.  Because of these issues, businesses are encouraged to take a larger and long-term view of what is being required, what is likely to be required and what may be done in response.  As the 2014 General Assembly session begins on January 8th, businesses should carefully evaluate how these recent developments may affect their operations and budgets. 

Pols in Hot Water Over Rain Tax

By: Bryan Sears, The Daily Record
Daily Record Business Writer

… “Most business owners are reasonably comfortable paying fees and taxes when they know it will actually make a difference,” said M. Trent Zivkovich, a Baltimore attorney at Whiteford Taylor Preston LLP. “That being said, there is a great deal of frustration about the implementation and application of the program in the counties in terms of the fees’ charges and the credits that are available in some counties but not in others.”

Now What? How You Can Minimize The Cost Of Your Stormwater Fees

This article is one in a series presenting information on the current status of local legislation implementing stormwater fees in ten jurisdictions across Maryland. For background on the stormwater fees and their purpose, please see this earlier article.  This article summarizes information on the ability for property owners to appeal the imposition of the fees and to obtain credits and rebates against the fees.

UPDATED: Coming to a Locality Near You - Stormwater Remediation Fees in Maryland

Maryland has new stormwater fees that are being implemented in certain counties by this upcoming July 1st.

In late 2010, the EPA issued the Chesapeake Bay Total Maximum Daily Load (“TMDL”), effectively establishing a “pollution diet” for nitrogen, phosphorus and sediment discharges to surface waters that the six Bay watershed states and the District of Columbia must meet by 2025.  The Maryland Department of the Environment determined that stormwater runoff contributes about 18% of the nitrogen and 22% of the phosphorus loads flowing to the Bay from our state.  In order for Maryland to follow its “pollution diet”, the state's plans call for improvements to stormwater management practices contributing about 17% of nitrogen reductions and about 45% of the phosphorus reductions necessary to meet the TMDL goals.  Current estimates of the cost to implement these stormwater improvements are approximately $7.4 billion statewide through 2025.  Failure of a state to meet its pollution diet may result in the EPA withholding federal funding for state water management programs, the withdrawal of state authority to manage and issue all water discharge permits, and potentially significant fines.

Coming to a Locality Near You - Stormwater Remediation Fees in Maryland

Maryland has new stormwater fees that are being implemented county-by-county.

On May 2, 2012, Governor O’Malley signed into law House Bill 987.  In short, the law requires jurisdictions within Maryland subject to a federal Municipal Separate Storm Sewer System (MS4) Phase I permit to establish a local stormwater protection and restoration program and implement a local stormwater fee to fund that Program by July 1, 2013. 

Special Legislative Alert

The 2012 Maryland General Assembly Session ended on April 9th with the passage of a number of bills that promise to have a significant impact on real estate and land development activities in Maryland.

Energy Star, Tax Incentives and Capital Improvements, oh my! Why Investing Now in Energy Efficiency Shouldn’t Scare Commercial Building Owners

Numerous programs exist that provide real financial benefits and market positioning opportunities for commercial and certain multi-family building owners looking to benefit from improvements in energy efficiency.  In fact, some owners are finding that the cost of modest capital improvements can be accounted for through reduced future utility expenses.   If these improvements allow an owner to then capitalize on available federal tax incentives, possibly save their tenants money and position themselves in the marketplace, the benefits can be substantial.

MDE Proposes New Erosion & Sediment Control Regulations

At the end of August, the Maryland Department of the Environment (MDE) proposed new Erosion & Sediment Control Regulations that will impact most land development activities across Maryland that disturb more than 5,000 square feet of land area and more than 100 cubic yards of earth.  The proposed regulations generally provide that no grading or building permit may be issued for a project unless an erosion & sediment control plan drafted in accordance with its requirements is first approved.

EPA Amends Toxic Substances Control Act Regulations Requiring Chemical Manufacturers and Importers to Report Certain Information

Effective September 15, 2011, the EPA has amended regulations that govern how, what, when and where companies report information required by the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) concerning chemicals they manufacture or import.  This rule, formerly known as the Inventory Update Reporting (IUR) rule and now renamed the Chemical Data Reporting (CDR) rule, requires certain manufacturers (which, by regulation, includes importers) of chemicals listed on the TSCA Chemical Substances Inventory to report information about the manufacturing, importation, processing and use of those chemical substances.  Companies were last required to submit information to EPA under the IUR rule in 2006.


New Partners Elected at Whiteford Taylor & Preston

Whiteford, Taylor & Preston is pleased to announce that L. Katherine Good, Brandy M. Rapp, Jane Saindon Rogers and M. Trent Zivkovich have been named Partners of the firm, effective January 1, 2017.

The firm’s managing partner, Martin T. Fletcher, commented, “It is a privilege to welcome these fine attorneys into their new and expanded roles in the firm. Each of them has continued to make tremendous contributions to our expanding client base and growing geographic profile.” 

M. Trent Zivkovich Joins Whiteford, Taylor & Preston

Whiteford, Taylor & Preston is delighted to announce that M. Trent Zivkovich has joined the firm as Counsel in the Baltimore office.

Trent is an environmental lawyer and joins the firm's Real Estate and Environmental practices. He will also become part of our Green Building and Clean Energy industry groups.