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Ned Abelson Brownfields environmental insurance lawyer



Ned Abelson is a nationally recognized environmental lawyer who is known for his expertise in Brownfields redevelopment, transactional work (including lab leasing), and environmental insurance. He has received praise from clients for his strong business sense, and his extensive knowledge with respect to environmental issues that affect real estate projects. Ned helps developers, investors, tenants and lenders maximize the value of and successfully manage potential risks associated with contaminated properties.

Ned was named “Lawyer of the Year” in Environmental Law by Best Lawyers® for 2020. He is recognized by Chambers USA as "an expert in his field.... According to peers, 'he is the Mr. Brownfields attorney of Massachusetts,' while clients describe him as 'the premier environmental attorney in Boston; he is very creative, knowledgeable and smart."

As Co-Chair of NAIOP’s Brownfields Redevelopment Subcommittee, Ned frequently works with the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MADEP) to shape its environmental policies so that they are protective while maximizing the ability of private sector parties to redevelop contaminated property successfully. Ned also has considerable involvement with vapor intrusion matters, in part based on his representation of the commercial real estate industry as a member of the MADEP's Superfund Advisory Committee and its Indoor Air Workgroup. Ned has frequently presented to industry leaders and environmental agency personnel at programs sponsored by organizations such as NAIOP, the ICSC, the USEPA, and the Greater Boston Real Estate Board. He has also been a Visiting Lecturer at the MIT Center for Real Estate since 2010.


  • Lexology Client Choice Award, Environment, USA, 2022, 2024
  • NAIOP Massachusetts, Government Affairs Champion Award, 2023
  • The Lawdragon Green 500: Leaders in Environmental Law, 2023-2024
  • Business Today, Top 10 Powerhouse Environmental Lawyers Massachusetts, 2023
  • Boston Magazine Top Lawyers. Land Use and Zoning, 2021, Land Use Environment 2022, 2023
  • Lawyer of the Year, Best Lawyers in America® (2012, 2020): Environmental Law
  • Chambers USA, Environment, Massachusetts, 2003 - 2023 (Band 1 since 2006)
  • Best Lawyers in America® (2006 - 2024): Environmental Law
  • Who’s Who Legal, International Leading Environmental Lawyer (2012-2022)
  • Who's Who Legal, Thought Leaders USA 2023
  • Massachusetts Super Lawyers, 2004 - 2023
  • Martindale Hubbell Peer-Review Rated AV PreeminentTM
  • Expert Guides | The World's Leading Lawyers | Environment, 2017-2018
  • NAIOP Massachusetts, Government Affairs Award, 2011
  • Invited to the White House to attend the announcement of Vice President Gore’s Brownfields Action Agenda, 1997
  • Interviewed by the Wall Street Journal, Boston Globe and National Public Radio concerning Brownfields and environmental insurance issues.


  • Co-Chair, Brownfields Redevelopment Subcommittee, NAIOP Massachusetts Chapter
  • NAIOP Representative, Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MADEP) Superfund Advisory Committee
  • Member, MADEP Indoor Air Workgroup
  • Former Member, ULI Redevelopment & Reuse Council
  • Founding Member and Former Policy Committee Co-Chair, Massachusetts Chapter, National Brownfields Association
  • Former Chair, International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC) Subcommittee on Environmental Issues
  • Pro Bono work for the Lakeview Manor Tenant Association, Inc. from 1983 through 2012
  • Former Chairman and Member, Board of Directors, New Ecology, Inc.


  • Massachusetts


  • University of Pennsylvania Law School  (J.D., 1983)
  • Brown University  (B.A., magna cum laude, 1978)
    • Phi Beta Kappa