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Time To Act: Response To Questions Posed By The Expert Panel On Sustainable Finance On Fiduciary Obligation And Effective Climate-Related Financial Disclosures, Janis P. Sarra, Cynthia Williams Jan 2019

Time To Act: Response To Questions Posed By The Expert Panel On Sustainable Finance On Fiduciary Obligation And Effective Climate-Related Financial Disclosures, Janis P. Sarra, Cynthia Williams

Faculty Publications

While there are numerous strategies to be deployed to move Canada to a financially sustainable future, this study addresses two critically important issues: fiduciary obligation of corporate- and pension-fiduciaries, and national action on environmental, social and governance (“ESG”) financial disclosure, including climate-related financial risk disclosure. The Canadian economy is facing significant challenges and disruptions in the transition to a lower carbon world. Absent clear and innovative steps to ensure our corporations and financial institutions act to address carbon emissions and other environmental, social and governance risks and opportunities, we will be seriously prejudiced in a world that is rapidly moving ...


Complementary Authority And The One-Way Ratchet: Ecosystem Services Property, Regulation, And Wildlife Conservation, Kalyani Robbins Jan 2018

Complementary Authority And The One-Way Ratchet: Ecosystem Services Property, Regulation, And Wildlife Conservation, Kalyani Robbins

Faculty Publications

Due to the priorities of the Trump Administration, which are not a great match with those of the conservation community, we find ourselves in a period of rollbacks for all kinds of environmental regulation, including the protection of wildlife. When the federal government fails to adequately regulate, we look to other sources of authority to fill that gap. The first and most obvious place to look is to state and local governments. They are our best hope to avoid hemorrhaging vulnerable species during this presidency. Alas, looking at the realities of state wildlife conservation laws, we see the gaps remain ...


Allocating Property Interests In Ecosystem Services: From Chaos To Flowing Rivers, Kalyani Robbins Jan 2018

Allocating Property Interests In Ecosystem Services: From Chaos To Flowing Rivers, Kalyani Robbins

Faculty Publications

No abstract provided.


Fiduciary Obligations In Business And Investment: Implications Of Climate Change, Janis P. Sarra Oct 2017

Fiduciary Obligations In Business And Investment: Implications Of Climate Change, Janis P. Sarra

Faculty Publications

Fiduciary obligation, under both corporate law and the common law, requires directors and officers to identify and address climate-related financial and other risks. In fulfilling their obligations to act in the best interests of the company, directors and officers must directly engage with developments in knowledge regarding physical and transition risks related to climate change and how these risks may impact their corporation. Depending on the firm’s economic activities, the risk may be minor or highly significant, but directors and officers have an obligation to make the inquiries, to devise strategies to address risks, and to have an ongoing ...


California's Climate Diplomacy And Dormant Preemption, David L. Sloss Oct 2017

California's Climate Diplomacy And Dormant Preemption, David L. Sloss

Faculty Publications

After President Trump announced that the United States would withdraw from the Paris climate agreement, Governor Brown issued a joint statement with his counterparts from New York and Washington, announcing that the three governors “are teaming up to fight climate change in response to President Trump’s” withdrawal decision. A few days later, Governor Brown met in Beijing with China’s President Xi Jinping. The Chinese President reportedly “welcomed California’s efforts to work with the Chinese government to help combat global warming.” According to the California government web site, the state is party to a total of 54 “international ...


Food And Fertile Ground: Improving Chinese Food Safety Through Environmental Regulation, Brent Domann Jan 2017

Food And Fertile Ground: Improving Chinese Food Safety Through Environmental Regulation, Brent Domann

Faculty Publications

No abstract provided.


Water Governance In Haiti: An Assessment Of Laws And Institutional Capacities, Ryan Stoa Jan 2017

Water Governance In Haiti: An Assessment Of Laws And Institutional Capacities, Ryan Stoa

Faculty Publications

The Republic of Haiti struggles to sustainably manage its water resources. Public health is compromised by low levels of water supply, sanitation, and hygiene, and water resources are often contaminated and unsustainably allocated. While poor governance is often blamed for these shortcomings, the laws and institutions regulating water resources in Haiti are poorly understood, especially by the international community. This study brings together and analyzes Haitian water laws, assesses institutional capacities, and provides a case study of water management in northern Haiti in order to provide a more complete picture of the sector. Funded by the Inter-American Development Bank as ...


The Opportunities And Limitations Of Neutral Carbon Tariffs, Juscelino F. Colares, Ashwin Rode Jan 2017

The Opportunities And Limitations Of Neutral Carbon Tariffs, Juscelino F. Colares, Ashwin Rode

Faculty Publications

Because carbon taxes can lead to loss of competitiveness, applying tariffs on imports from non-carbon-restricting countries helps address the cost disadvantage faced by producers in carbon-restricting countries. Such tariffs, known as border carbon adjustments ("BCAs"), can also help reduce possible carbon "leakage," or the growth in foreign emissions due to increased production of carbon-intensive goods in non-carbon-restricting countries. We demonstrate that BCAs that do not exceed the burdens imposed by carbon taxation on domestic like products could be consistent with World Trade Organization ("WTO") rules. However, "neutral" (i.e., nondiscriminatory) BCAs might still be inefficiently high from a global welfare ...


The Promise Of The Rule Of (Environmental) Law: A Reply To Pardy's Unbearable Licence, Jocelyn Stacey Jan 2016

The Promise Of The Rule Of (Environmental) Law: A Reply To Pardy's Unbearable Licence, Jocelyn Stacey

Faculty Publications

This short reply clarifies and defends the argument presented in "The Environmental Emergency and the Legality of Discretion in Environmental Law." It responds to the arguments that were made, and that could have been made, in Pardy's critique "An Unbearable Licence".


Preventive Justice, The Precautionary Principle And The Rule Of Law, Jocelyn Stacey Jan 2016

Preventive Justice, The Precautionary Principle And The Rule Of Law, Jocelyn Stacey

Faculty Publications

Despite its largely preventive orientation, environmental law has, with one exception, remained distinct from the burgeoning field of preventive justice. The exception is the precautionary principle, which has become a subject of interest and frequent skepticism amongst preventive justice scholars. The precautionary principle is a central principle in environmental law. Its centrality arises from the pervasiveness of scientific uncertainty in environmental regulation; that is, our inability to reliably predict the consequences of our policy choices on environmental and human health. The precautionary principle squarely addresses the question of how we ought to proceed in the face of unavoidable uncertainty. This ...


The Biodiversity Paradigm Shift: Adapting The Endangered Species Act To Climate Change, Kalyani Robbins Jan 2016

The Biodiversity Paradigm Shift: Adapting The Endangered Species Act To Climate Change, Kalyani Robbins

Faculty Publications

The Endangered Species Act (ESA) was designed to protect species that had been rendered more vulnerable to extinction as a result of human activity. As such, its implementation has traditionally focused on keeping human beings away from such species and giving the species (and their ecosystems) space to heal on their own. Climate change is altering the landscape everywhere on the globe, rendering the hands-off approach no longer sufficient. Active interventions will become more necessary as we get further into the changing climate. Taking decisive action in response to climate change will also require a fundamental shift in our approach ...


Beyond Science And Hysteria: Reality And Perceptions Of Environmental Justice Concerns Surrounding Marcellus And Utica Shale Gas Development, Ann M. Eisenberg Jan 2015

Beyond Science And Hysteria: Reality And Perceptions Of Environmental Justice Concerns Surrounding Marcellus And Utica Shale Gas Development, Ann M. Eisenberg

Faculty Publications

The debate surrounding the use of hydraulic fracturing (also known as “fracking” or “HF”) to extract natural gas from the Marcellus and Utica shale deposits is often characterized as a tension between economic development and environmental risks. But frequently missing from this dichotomy is the fact that the concerns of many who oppose HF use extend beyond the purely “environmental,” and also include concerns about issues such as “the natural resource curse” and losing autonomy. These concerns ring of “environmental justice” rather than “environmentalism.” Environmental justice espouses the belief that no group should bear disproportionate environmental consequences resulting from industrial ...


Droughts, Floods, And Wildfires: Paleo Perspectives On Disaster Law In The Anthropocene, Ryan Stoa Jan 2015

Droughts, Floods, And Wildfires: Paleo Perspectives On Disaster Law In The Anthropocene, Ryan Stoa

Faculty Publications

Humanity’s impact on the earth has become so pronounced that momentum is building toward adopting a new term for the modern geological age — the “Anthropocene.” The term signifies that human activity has reached a scale that it is now a planetary force capable of shaping ecosystems and natural processes. And yet, anthropocentric natural resources management and environmental lawmaking in the United States reveals a lack of control in managing natural systems and fostering resilience to extreme events. These systems do not easily conform to the whims of reactionary environmental policies. Droughts, floods, and wildfires, in particular, are often conceptualized ...


A Sour Battle In Lago Agrio And Beyond: The Metamorphosis Of Transnational Litigation And The Protection Of Collective Rights In Ecuador, Manuel A. Gomez Jan 2015

A Sour Battle In Lago Agrio And Beyond: The Metamorphosis Of Transnational Litigation And The Protection Of Collective Rights In Ecuador, Manuel A. Gomez

Faculty Publications

This article intends to explore the interplay between different dispute processing mechanisms and fora in the realm of transnational litigation, through the lens of the Chevron-Ecuador legal saga. My goal is to discuss the transformation of a transnational complex case and the challenges faced by the parties, their procedural strategies, and the perceived advantages of the different mechanisms. In this regard, I will also address the development of mechanisms for the protection of diffuse rights involving the environment; the role of the courts in supervising compliance with judicial remedies, their engagement in activities that go beyond their traditional role as ...


Weed And Water Law: Regulating Legal Marijuana, Ryan Stoa Jan 2015

Weed And Water Law: Regulating Legal Marijuana, Ryan Stoa

Faculty Publications

Marijuana is nearing the end of its prohibition in the United States. Arguably the country’s largest cash crop, marijuana is already legal for recreational use in Colorado, Washington, Oregon, Alaska, and Washington DC. Between now and election day 2016, an additional 14 states may place marijuana legalization initiatives on their ballots. In addition, 23 states and Washington DC have legalized medical marijuana, with up to seven states pending legislation. The era of marijuana prohibition is rapidly coming to a close.

At the same time, traditional doctrines of water law are struggling to cope with the modern realities of water ...


The Environmental Emergency And The Legality Of Discretion In Environmental Law, Jocelyn Stacey Jan 2015

The Environmental Emergency And The Legality Of Discretion In Environmental Law, Jocelyn Stacey

Faculty Publications

This article argues that environmental issues confront us as an ongoing emergency. The epistemic features of serious environmental issues – the fact that we cannot reliably distinguish ex ante between benign policy choices and choices that may lead to environmental catastrophe – are the same features of an emergency. This means that, like emergencies, environmental issues pose a fundamental challenge for the rule of law: they reveal the necessity of unconstrained executive discretion. Discretion is widely lamented as a fundamental flaw in Canadian environmental law, which undermines both environmental protection and the rule of law itself. Through the conceptual framework of the ...


Banning Lawns, Sarah B. Schindler Jan 2014

Banning Lawns, Sarah B. Schindler

Faculty Publications

Recognizing their role in sustainability efforts, many local governments are enacting climate change plans, mandatory green building ordinances, and sustainable procurement policies. But thus far, local governments have largely ignored one of the most pervasive threats to sustainability — lawns. This Article examines the trend toward sustainability mandates by considering the implications of a ban on lawns, the single largest irrigated crop in the United States.

Green yards are deeply seated in the American ethos of the sanctity of the single-family home. However, this psychological attachment to lawns results in significant environmental harms: conventional turfgrass is a non-native monocrop that contributes ...


Responsible, Renewable, And Redesigned: How The Renewable Energy Movement Can Make Peace With The Endangered Species Act, Kalyani Robbins Jan 2014

Responsible, Renewable, And Redesigned: How The Renewable Energy Movement Can Make Peace With The Endangered Species Act, Kalyani Robbins

Faculty Publications

One of the most promising routes to a sustainable energy future, as well as climate change mitigation, is the development of renewable energy sources such as wind, solar energy, and hydropower. Indeed, scientists have proposed plans to move completely (100 percent!) to these energy sources within a couple of decades. Mark Z. Jacobson and M.A. Delucchi, scientists from Stanford and U.C. Davis, have outlined a plan to achieve this goal, thereby “eliminating all fossil fuels”. Hydroelectric power already provides almost one-fifth of the world's electricity, and wind and solar development is rapidly picking up as well. However ...


The Rule-Of-Law Underpinnings Of Endangered Species Protection: Minister Of Fisheries And Oceans V. David Suzuki Foundation, 2012 Fca 40, Jocelyn Stacey Jan 2014

The Rule-Of-Law Underpinnings Of Endangered Species Protection: Minister Of Fisheries And Oceans V. David Suzuki Foundation, 2012 Fca 40, Jocelyn Stacey

Faculty Publications

Environmental organizations have experienced a string of recent courtroom successes enforcing the federal Species At Risk Act. This case comment examines one of these cases, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans v. David Suzuki Foundation (“Killer Whales”), to expose the rule-of-law underpinnings of the Federal Court of Appeal’s decision. It argues that, while the decision is on its face an ostensible victory for endangered species protection, the conception of the rule of law on which the court relies is incapable of providing meaningful legal constraints for much environmental decision-making.


Comparing The Clean Air Act And A Carbon Price, Nathan D. Richardson, Arthur Fraas Jan 2014

Comparing The Clean Air Act And A Carbon Price, Nathan D. Richardson, Arthur Fraas

Faculty Publications

Over the last half-decade, a variety of federal legislative proposals for limiting greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions have been put forward, most of which would set a price on carbon. As of early 2013, the one politically plausible policy appears to be a carbon tax, passed as part of a larger fiscal reform package. Meanwhile, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has begun regulating GHG emissions from a variety of sources using its authority under the Clean Air Act. It may be necessary to choose between these two policies, however. The Waxman-Markey cap-and-trade bill that failed in 2009 would have preempted ...


Governing The Ungovernable: Integrating The Multimodal Approach To Keeping Agricultural Land Use From Swallowing Ecosystems, Kalyani Robbins Jan 2014

Governing The Ungovernable: Integrating The Multimodal Approach To Keeping Agricultural Land Use From Swallowing Ecosystems, Kalyani Robbins

Faculty Publications

As the population grows, so does the conflict between demand for agricultural productivity and the need to maintain healthy ecosystems. Unfortunately, this concern alone does not motivate the agricultural industry to operate in a more environmentally friendly manner, nor is it an industry that has proven amenable to strict regulation. Indeed, any such effort must face one of the mightiest lobbies of all time. As it functions today, agriculture is unsustainable and at risk of wiping out more than its fair share of our already dwindling biodiversity. As demand increases, there is the potential for it to get worse than ...


Subsidiarity In Principle:Decentralization Of Water Resources Management, Ryan B. Stoa Jan 2014

Subsidiarity In Principle:Decentralization Of Water Resources Management, Ryan B. Stoa

Faculty Publications

No abstract provided.


Pleading Patterns And The Role Of Litigation As A Driver Of Federal Climate Change Legislation, Juscelino F. Colares, Kosta Ristovski Jan 2014

Pleading Patterns And The Role Of Litigation As A Driver Of Federal Climate Change Legislation, Juscelino F. Colares, Kosta Ristovski

Faculty Publications

Based on a variant of the Elliott-Ackerman-Millian theory that variable, potentially inconsistent and costly litigation outcomes induce industry to seek federal preemptive legislation to reign in such costs, we collect data on climate change-related litigation to determine whether litigation might motivate major greenhouse gas emitters to accept a preemptive, though possibly carbon-restricting, legislative compromise. We conduct a spectral cluster analysis on 178 initial federal and state judicial filings to reveal the most relevant groupings among climate change-related suits and their underlying pleading patterns. Besides exposing the general content and structure of climate change-related filings, this study identifies major specific pleading ...


Do You Know What's On Your Plate?: The Importance Of Regulating The Processes Of Food Production, Martha Dragich Jan 2013

Do You Know What's On Your Plate?: The Importance Of Regulating The Processes Of Food Production, Martha Dragich

Faculty Publications

This article argues that the current regulatory approach-focusing on the supposed equivalence of new foods to traditional ones-is unduly narrow, particularly given the characteristics of the modem food system. To achieve the broad objectives of the FDCA in the context of the industrialized, highly processed, and global food supply of the twenty-first century requires adopting a broader understanding of consumer protection needs with respect to food. The FDCA itself is written in very broad terms and provides much of the authority needed today. The FDA's enforcement capacity, however, already is severely strained.52 Moreover, the scientific basis for some ...


The Precautionary Principle And Its Application In The Intellectual Property Context: Towards A Public Domain Impact Assessment, Graham Reynolds Jan 2013

The Precautionary Principle And Its Application In The Intellectual Property Context: Towards A Public Domain Impact Assessment, Graham Reynolds

Faculty Publications

This chapter considers whether the precautionary principle - a central element of contemporary environmental law and policy - can be usefully applied in the intellectual property context as a means through which the public domain can be protected. Assuming the importance of the public domain, and arguing that expansions in intellectual property protection risk harming the public domain, this chapter contends that it is appropriate to apply the precautionary principle in the intellectual property context in order to guard against harm to the public domain; suggests several ways in which a precautionary principle (or a precautionary approach) could be applied in the ...


Conservative Principles For Environmental Reform,, Jonathan H. Adler Jan 2013

Conservative Principles For Environmental Reform,, Jonathan H. Adler

Faculty Publications

Major environmental policy reform is long overdue. The current regulatory architecture was erected in the 1970s. Since then meaningful reforms have been few and far between. A few reforms and regulatory expansions were adopted in the 1980s, and Congress enacted significant reforms to the Clean Air Act in 1990. Only the most minor environmental bills have been enacted since then.


The Dynamics And Global Implications Of Subglobal Carbon-Restricting Regimes, Juscelino F. Colares Jan 2013

The Dynamics And Global Implications Of Subglobal Carbon-Restricting Regimes, Juscelino F. Colares

Faculty Publications

The European Union and Australia have enacted comprehensive carbon-restricting reforms that will affect both domestic and foreign industries. After describing these reforms in detail, the article develops a microeconomic analytical model that explains the impact these regimes have on the dynamics of inter-firm competition in carbon-restricting nations and how they will also influence technology choices by certain industries in carbon-friendly nations. Specifically, exporters and producers operating in vertically-integrated industries in carbon-friendly nations will increasingly elect carbon-efficient technologies to minimize costs as they adjust to a changing international regulatory environment. The article hypothesizes that this shift in the carbon intensity of ...


Complex And Murky Spatial Planning, Josh Eagle Oct 2012

Complex And Murky Spatial Planning, Josh Eagle

Faculty Publications

No abstract provided.


Private Policing Of Environmental Performance: Does It Further Public Goals?, Sarah L. Stafford Apr 2012

Private Policing Of Environmental Performance: Does It Further Public Goals?, Sarah L. Stafford

Faculty Publications

Over the past two decades the role of private parties in the policing of environmental regulation has grown dramatically. In some cases the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has led this effort. In other situations, private parties have provided the impetus for new policing activities that are conducted independently from the EPA. Private policing can be beneficial when the increased involvement of the private sector either decreases the costs of achieving a particular level of environmental performance or increases environmental performance in a cost-effective manner. Private parties, however, could also divert regulated entities away from regulatory objectives. This Article explores the ...


Human Security And Military Preparedness, Linda A. Malone Jan 2012

Human Security And Military Preparedness, Linda A. Malone

Faculty Publications

No abstract provided.