Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Law Commons

Open Access. Powered by Scholars. Published by Universities.®

Articles 1 - 30 of 48

Full-Text Articles in Law

On Environmental, Climate Change & National Security Law, Mark P. Nevitt Sep 2019

On Environmental, Climate Change & National Security Law, Mark P. Nevitt

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

This Article offers a new way to think about climate change. Two new climate change assessments — the 2018 Fourth National Climate Assessment (NCA) and the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel’s Special Report on Climate Change — prominently highlight climate change’s multifaceted national security risks. Indeed, not only is climate change a “super wicked” environmental problem, it also accelerates existing national security threats, acting as both a “threat accelerant” and “catalyst for conflict.” Further, climate change increases the intensity and frequency of extreme weather events while threatening nations’ territorial integrity and sovereignty through rising sea levels. It causes both internal displacement ...


Redefining Leadership In The Age Of The Sdgs: Accelerating And Scaling Up Delivery Through Innovation And Inclusion, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Rangita De Silva De Alwis Aug 2019

Redefining Leadership In The Age Of The Sdgs: Accelerating And Scaling Up Delivery Through Innovation And Inclusion, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Rangita De Silva De Alwis

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

In 2015 the United Nations adopted seventeen Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to promote prosperity while protecting the environment. Our research examines how the SDGs, considered the grandest vision for sustainable development for the world, can be accelerated by ambitious leaders in the field of innovation. Through careful selection based on the type of industry, scale, impact, and diversity, we study a cohort of bold leaders who are shaping a brave new world. In turn, the urgent charge of the SDGs provides a platform and an innovation lab to incubate new ideas for inclusion and technologies.


Making Sustainability Disclosure Sustainable, Jill E. Fisch Apr 2019

Making Sustainability Disclosure Sustainable, Jill E. Fisch

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Sustainability is receiving increasing attention from issuers, investors and regulators. The desire to understand issuer sustainability practices and their relationship to economic performance has resulted in a proliferation of sustainability disclosure regimes and standards. The range of approaches to disclosure, however, limit the comparability and reliability of the information disclosed. The Securities & Exchange Commission (SEC) has solicited comment on whether to require expanded sustainability disclosures in issuer’s periodic financial reporting, and investors have communicated broad-based support for such expanded disclosures, but, to date, the SEC has not required general sustainability disclosure.

This Article argues that claims about the relationship ...


Capturing Regulatory Agendas?: An Empirical Study Of Industry Use Of Rulemaking Petitions, Daniel E. Walters Mar 2018

Capturing Regulatory Agendas?: An Empirical Study Of Industry Use Of Rulemaking Petitions, Daniel E. Walters

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

A great deal of skepticism toward administrative agencies stems from the widespread perception that they excessively or even exclusively cater to business interests. From the political right comes the accusation that business interests use regulation to erect barriers to entry that protect profits and stifle competition. From the political left comes the claim that business interests use secretive interactions with agencies to erode and negate beneficial regulatory programs. Regulatory “capture” theory elevates many of these claims to the status of economic law. Despite growing skepticism about capture theory in academic circles, empirical studies of business influence and capture return ambiguous ...


Could Official Climate Denial Revive The Common Law As A Regulatory Backstop?, Mark P. Nevitt, Robert Percival Jan 2018

Could Official Climate Denial Revive The Common Law As A Regulatory Backstop?, Mark P. Nevitt, Robert Percival

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

The Trump Administration is rapidly turning the clock back on climate policy and environmental regulation. Despite overwhelming, peer-reviewed scientific evidence, administration officials eager to promote greater use of fossil fuels are disregarding climate science. This Article argues that this massive and historic deregulation may spawn yet another wave of legal innovation as litigants, including states and their political subdivisions, return to the common law to protect the health of the planet. Prior to the emergence of the major federal environmental laws in the 1970s, the common law of nuisance gave rise to the earliest environmental decisions in U.S. history ...


Polar Opposites: Assessing The State Of Environmental Law In The World’S Polar Regions, Mark Nevitt, Robert V. Percival Jan 2018

Polar Opposites: Assessing The State Of Environmental Law In The World’S Polar Regions, Mark Nevitt, Robert V. Percival

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Climate change is fundamentally transforming both the Arctic and Antarctic polar regions. Yet they differ dramatically in their governing legal regimes. For the past sixty years the Antarctic Treaty System (ATS), a traditional “hard law” international law treaty system, effectively de-militarized the Antarctic region and halted competing sovereignty claims. In contrast, the Arctic region lacks a unifying Arctic treaty and is governed by the newer “soft law” global environmental law model embodied in the Arctic Council’s collaborative work. Now climate change is challenging this model. It is transforming the geography of both polar regions, breaking away massive ice sheets ...


The Limits Of Performance-Based Regulation, Cary Coglianese Apr 2017

The Limits Of Performance-Based Regulation, Cary Coglianese

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Performance-based regulation is widely heralded as a superior approach to regulation. Rather than specifying the actions regulated entities must take, performance-based regulation instead requires the attainment of outcomes and gives flexibility in how to meet them. Despite nearly universal acclaim for performance-based regulation, the reasons supporting its use remain largely theoretical and conjectural. Owing in part to a lack of a clear conceptual taxonomy, researchers have yet to produce much empirical research documenting the strengths and weaknesses of performance-based regulation. In this Article, I provide a much-needed conceptual framework for understanding and assessing performance-based regulation. After defining performance-based regulation and ...


Risk And Regulatory Calibration: Wto Compliance Review Of The U.S. Dolphin-Safe Tuna Labeling Regime, Cary Coglianese, André Sapir Jan 2017

Risk And Regulatory Calibration: Wto Compliance Review Of The U.S. Dolphin-Safe Tuna Labeling Regime, Cary Coglianese, André Sapir

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

In a series of recent disputes arising under the TBT Agreement, the Appellate Body has interpreted Article 2.1 to provide that discriminatory and trade-distortive regulation could be permissible if based upon a “legitimate regulatory distinction.” In its recent compliance decision in the US-Tuna II dispute, the AB reaffirmed its view that regulatory distinctions embedded in the U.S. dolphin-safe tuna labeling regime were not legitimate because they were not sufficiently calibrated to the risks to dolphins associated with different tuna fishing conditions. This paper analyzes the AB’s application of the notion of risk-based regulation in the US-Tuna II ...


The Law Of The Test: Performance-Based Regulation And Diesel Emissions Control, Cary Coglianese, Jennifer Nash Jan 2017

The Law Of The Test: Performance-Based Regulation And Diesel Emissions Control, Cary Coglianese, Jennifer Nash

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

The Volkswagen diesel emissions scandal of 2015 not only pushed that company’s stock and retail sales into freefall, but also raised serious questions about the efficacy of existing regulatory controls. The same furtive actions taken by Volkswagen had been taken nearly twenty years earlier by other firms in the diesel industry. In that previous scandal, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) discovered that diesel truck engine manufacturers had, like Volkswagen would later do, programmed on-board computers to calibrate their engines one way to satisfy the required emissions test. Those manufacturers had also programmed the on-board computers to re-calibrate ...


The Green Option, Gideon Parchomovsky, Endre Stavang Jan 2015

The Green Option, Gideon Parchomovsky, Endre Stavang

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

We introduce an innovative market-based mechanism that may be used to advance environmental goals. Our mechanism employs option theory to give established businesses a financial stake in the success of green technologies. We show why and how green companies should be given an option to transfer a block of their shares to any corporation of their choice, incentivize them to switch to environmentally friendly technologies and to use their political clout to alleviate legal, regulatory and political barriers to the adoption of such technologies. In short, giving established corporations a stake in green companies will give them a stake in ...


Endogenous Decentralization In Federal Environmental Policies, Howard F. Chang, Hilary Sigman, Leah G. Traub Jan 2014

Endogenous Decentralization In Federal Environmental Policies, Howard F. Chang, Hilary Sigman, Leah G. Traub

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Under most federal environmental laws and some health and safety laws, states may apply for “primacy,” that is, authority to implement and enforce federal law, through a process known as “authorization.” Some observers fear that states use authorization to adopt more lax policies in a regulatory “race to the bottom.” This paper presents a simple model of the interaction between the federal and state governments in such a scheme of partial decentralization. Our model suggests that the authorization option may not only increase social welfare but also allow more stringent environmental regulations than would otherwise be feasible. Our model also ...


Performance Track’S Postmortem: Lessons From The Rise And Fall Of Epa’S “Flagship” Voluntary Program, Cary Coglianese, Jennifer Nash Jan 2014

Performance Track’S Postmortem: Lessons From The Rise And Fall Of Epa’S “Flagship” Voluntary Program, Cary Coglianese, Jennifer Nash

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

For nearly a decade, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) considered its National Environmental Performance Track to be its “flagship” voluntary program — even a model for transforming the conventional system of environmental regulation. Since Performance Track’s founding during the Clinton Administration, EPA officials repeatedly claimed that the program’s rewards attracted hundreds of the nation’s “top” environmental performers and induced these businesses to make significant environmental gains beyond legal requirements. Although EPA eventually disbanded Performance Track early in the Obama Administration, the program has been subsequently emulated by a variety of state and federal regulatory authorities. To ...


An Empirical Analysis Of Cost Recovery In Superfund Cases: Implications For Brownfields And Joint And Several Liability, Howard F. Chang, Hilary Sigman Jan 2014

An Empirical Analysis Of Cost Recovery In Superfund Cases: Implications For Brownfields And Joint And Several Liability, Howard F. Chang, Hilary Sigman

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Economic theory developed in the prior literature indicates that under the joint and several liability imposed by the federal Superfund statute, the government should recover more of its costs of cleaning up contaminated sites than it would under nonjoint liability, and the amount recovered should increase with the number of defendants and with the independence among defendants in trial outcomes. We test these predictions empirically using data on outcomes in federal Superfund cases. Theory also suggests that this increase in the amount recovered may discourage the sale and redevelopment of potentially contaminated sites (or “brownfields”). We find the increase to ...


The Social Value Of Mortality Risk Reduction: Vsl Vs. The Social Welfare Function Approach, Matthew D. Adler, James K. Hammitt, Nicholas Treich Mar 2012

The Social Value Of Mortality Risk Reduction: Vsl Vs. The Social Welfare Function Approach, Matthew D. Adler, James K. Hammitt, Nicholas Treich

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

We examine how different welfarist frameworks evaluate the social value of mortality risk-reduction. These frameworks include classical, distributively unweighted cost-benefit analysis—i.e., the “value per statistical life” (VSL) approach—and three benchmark social welfare functions (SWF): a utilitarian SWF, an ex ante prioritarian SWF, and an ex post prioritarian SWF. We examine the conditions on individual utility and on the SWF under which these frameworks display the following five properties: i) wealth sensitivity, ii) sensitivity to baseline risk, iii) equal value of risk reduction, iv) preference for risk equity, and v) catastrophe aversion. We show that the particular manner ...


A Cost-Benefit Interpretation Of The "Substantially Similar" Hurdle In The Congressional Review Act: Can Osha Ever Utter The E-Word (Ergonomics) Again?, Adam M. Finkel, Jason W. Sullivan Mar 2011

A Cost-Benefit Interpretation Of The "Substantially Similar" Hurdle In The Congressional Review Act: Can Osha Ever Utter The E-Word (Ergonomics) Again?, Adam M. Finkel, Jason W. Sullivan

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

The Congressional Review Act permits Congress to veto proposed regulations via a joint resolution, and prohibits an agency from reissuing a rule “in substantially the same form” as the vetoed rule. Some scholars—and officials within the agencies themselves—have understood the “substantially the same” standard to bar an agency from regulating in the same substantive area covered by a vetoed rule. Courts have not yet provided an authoritative interpretation of the standard.

This Article examines a spectrum of possible understandings of the standard, and relates them to the legislative history (of both the Congressional Review Act itself and the ...


The Effect Of Allowing Pollution Offsets With Imperfect Enforcement, Hilary A. Sigman, Howard F. Chang Sep 2010

The Effect Of Allowing Pollution Offsets With Imperfect Enforcement, Hilary A. Sigman, Howard F. Chang

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Several pollution control regimes, including climate change policies, allow polluters in one sector subject to an emissions cap to offset excessive emissions in that sector with pollution abatement in another sector. The government may often find it more costly to verify offset claims than to verify compliance with emissions caps, and concerns about difficulties in enforcement may lead regulators to restrict the use of offsets. In this paper, we demonstrate that allowing offsets may increase pollution abatement and reduce illegal pollution, even if the government has a fixed enforcement budget. We explore the circumstances that may make it preferable to ...


Global Warming Advocacy Science: A Cross Examination, Jason S. Johnston May 2010

Global Warming Advocacy Science: A Cross Examination, Jason S. Johnston

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Legal scholarship has come to accept as true the various pronouncements of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and other scientists who have been active in the movement for greenhouse gas (ghg) emission reductions to combat global warming. The only criticism that legal scholars have had of the story told by this group of activist scientists – what may be called the climate establishment – is that it is too conservative in not paying enough attention to possible catastrophic harm from potentially very high temperature increases. This paper departs from such faith in the climate establishment by comparing the picture of ...


Presidential Control Of Administrative Agencies: A Debate Over Law Or Politics?, Cary Coglianese Feb 2010

Presidential Control Of Administrative Agencies: A Debate Over Law Or Politics?, Cary Coglianese

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

No abstract provided.


The Environment And Climate Change: Is International Migration Part Of The Problem Or Part Of The Solution?, Howard F. Chang Jan 2009

The Environment And Climate Change: Is International Migration Part Of The Problem Or Part Of The Solution?, Howard F. Chang

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

No abstract provided.


Problems Of Equity And Efficiency In The Design Of International Greenhouse Gas Cap-And-Trade Schemes, Jason S. Johnston Jan 2009

Problems Of Equity And Efficiency In The Design Of International Greenhouse Gas Cap-And-Trade Schemes, Jason S. Johnston

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

This article argues that international greenhouse gas (GHG) cap-and-trade schemes suffer from inherent problems of enforceability and verifiability that both cause significant inefficiencies and create inevitable tradeoffs between equity and efficiency. A standard result in the economic analysis of international GHG cap and trade schemes is that an allocation of initial permits that favors poor, developing countries (making such countries net sellers in equilibrium) may be necessary not only to further redistributive goals but also the efficiency of the GHG cap and trade scheme. This coincidence of equity and efficiency is, however, unlikely to be realized under more realistic assumptions ...


Climate Change Confusion And The Supreme Court: The Misguided Regulation Of Greenhouse Gas Emissions Under The Clean Air Act, Jason S. Johnston Jan 2008

Climate Change Confusion And The Supreme Court: The Misguided Regulation Of Greenhouse Gas Emissions Under The Clean Air Act, Jason S. Johnston

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

In the spring of 2007, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Massachusetts v. EPA that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) must promulgate automobile tailpipe greenhouse gas emission standards under Section 202 of the Clean Air Act (CAA). American environmentalists hailed the Supreme Court's decision as an important victory in the battle to curb global warming. This article argues to the contrary that: 1) a large body of economic work demonstrates that the likely geographic and temporal pattern of costs and benefits to the U.S. from climate change bears no resemblance to the pollution problems that ...


The Law And Economics Of Environmental Federalism: Europe And The United States Compared, Michael G. Faure, Jason S. Johnston Jan 2008

The Law And Economics Of Environmental Federalism: Europe And The United States Compared, Michael G. Faure, Jason S. Johnston

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

This article describes the evolution and key features of the centralized environmental regulatory systems that emerged in the United States and Europe during the latter half of the twentieth century. It applies insights from the positive economic analysis of regulatory centralization in an attempt to explain a striking paradox found in both the European and American centralized environmental regulatory regimes: the fact that in both systems, centralized environmental regulation has been adopted not as a solution for transboundary pollution (interjursidictional externalities), but rather for pollution that is primarily local. The paper develops a positive account that explains the tendency of ...


Risk Equity: A New Proposal, Matthew D. Adler Jan 2008

Risk Equity: A New Proposal, Matthew D. Adler

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

What does distributive justice require of risk regulators? Various executive orders enjoin health and safety regulators to take account of “distributive impacts,” “equity,” or “environmental justice,” and many scholars endorse these requirements. But concrete methodologies for evaluating the equity effects of risk regulation policies remain undeveloped. The contrast with cost-benefit analysis--now a very well developed set of techniques --is stark. Equity analysis by governmental agencies that regulate health and safety risks, at least in the United States, lacks rigor and structure. This Article proposes a rigorous framework for risk-equity analysis, which I term “probabilistic population profile analysis” (PPPA). PPPA is ...


The Managerial Turn In Environmental Policy, Cary Coglianese Jan 2008

The Managerial Turn In Environmental Policy, Cary Coglianese

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

No abstract provided.


Reconfiguring Property In Three Dimensions, Abraham Bell, Gideon Parchomovsky Jan 2008

Reconfiguring Property In Three Dimensions, Abraham Bell, Gideon Parchomovsky

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

In this Article, we demonstrate that every property question invariably involves three distinct dimensions: (1) the number of owners, (2) the scope of owner’s dominion and (3) asset configuration. Furthermore, we claim that the interplay among the three dimensions shapes the field of property and holds the key to understanding the deep structure of property law. On this view, property law is a balancing act that requires policymakers and private actors to constantly juggle the often-conflicting demands lying along these three dimensions. The three-dimensional account of property we develop in this Article has important descriptive and normative implications. Descriptively ...


Policymaking Under Pressure: The Perils Of Incremental Responses To Climate Change, Cary Coglianese, Jocelyn D’Ambrosio Jan 2008

Policymaking Under Pressure: The Perils Of Incremental Responses To Climate Change, Cary Coglianese, Jocelyn D’Ambrosio

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Federal policymakers’ reluctance to enact a comprehensive climate change policy during the past decade has coincided with increased awareness of the inevitability and severity of the problems from global climate change. Thus, it is no surprise that piecemeal, sub-federal policies have garnered considerable support. Bolstered by the political science literature on the promise of incrementalism and democratic experimentalism, many proponents of climate change action favor incremental steps in the hope that they will improve the environment or at least serve as a basis for more comprehensive policies. Against this hopeful view, we explain why ad hoc responses to climate change ...


Debate: Collaborative Environmental Law: Pro And Con, Eric W. Orts, Cary Coglianese Dec 2007

Debate: Collaborative Environmental Law: Pro And Con, Eric W. Orts, Cary Coglianese

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

In this thoughtful and intricate cross-disciplinary debate, Professors Eric W. Orts, of Penn’s Wharton School, and Cary Coglianese, of Penn’s Law School, discuss the benefits and disadvantages of collaborative public policy decision making in the environmental context. It is no exaggeration to say that each year the world grows ever more aware of the nature of the environmental problems we face, and yet critical policy solutions continue to remain beyond the grasp of even the most interested parties. Professor Orts argues that it is time to embrace a different policymaking approach—that of collaborative environmental lawmaking. He argues ...


Constructing The License To Operate: Internal Factors And Their Influence On Corporate Environmental Decisions, Jennifer A. Howard-Grenville, Jennifer Nash, Cary Coglianese Sep 2007

Constructing The License To Operate: Internal Factors And Their Influence On Corporate Environmental Decisions, Jennifer A. Howard-Grenville, Jennifer Nash, Cary Coglianese

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

Voluntary programs intended to improve corporate environmental practices have proliferated in recent years. Why some businesses choose to participate in such voluntary programs, while others do not, remains an open question. Recent work suggests that companies’ environmental practices, including their decisions to participate in voluntary programs, are shaped by a license to operate comprised of social, regulatory, and economic pressures. Although these external factors do matter, by themselves they only partially explain business decision making, since facilities subject to similar external factors often behave differently. In this article, we draw from organizational theory to explain why we would expect a ...


The Effect Of Joint And Several Liability Under Superfund On Brownfields, Howard F. Chang, Hilary A. Sigman May 2007

The Effect Of Joint And Several Liability Under Superfund On Brownfields, Howard F. Chang, Hilary A. Sigman

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

In response to claims that the threat of environmental liability under the Superfund law deters the acquisition of potentially contaminated sites (or "brownfields") for redevelopment, the federal government has adopted programs to protect purchasers from liability. This protection may be unwarranted, however, if sellers can simply adjust property prices downward to compensate buyers for this liability. We present a model of joint and several liability under Superfund that allows us to distinguish four different reasons that this liability may discourage the purchase of brownfields. The previous literature has overlooked the effects that we identify, which all arise because a sale ...


Fashioning Entitlements: A Comparative Law And Economic Analysis Of The Judicial Role In Environmental Centralization In The U.S. And Europe, Jason S. Johnston, Michael G. Faure Apr 2007

Fashioning Entitlements: A Comparative Law And Economic Analysis Of The Judicial Role In Environmental Centralization In The U.S. And Europe, Jason S. Johnston, Michael G. Faure

Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law

This paper identifies and evaluates, from an economic point of view, the role of the judiciary the steady shift of environmental regulatory authority to higher, more centralized levels of government in both the U.S. and Europe. We supply both a positive analysis of how the decisions made by judges have affected the incentives of both private and public actors to pollute the natural environment, and normative answers to the question of whether judges have acted so as to create incentives that move levels of pollution in an efficient direction, toward their optimal, cost-minimizing (or net-benefit-maximizing) levels. Highlights of the ...