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Environmental Law

Environmental law

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Full-Text Articles in Law

Dealing With Climate Change Under The National Environmental Policy Act, Arnold W. Reitze Jr. Jun 2019

Dealing With Climate Change Under The National Environmental Policy Act, Arnold W. Reitze Jr.

Utah Law Faculty Scholarship

The National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) was an important environmental law for several decades before climate change became an issue of concern. Beginning in the 1990s efforts began to include in NEPA’s environmental assessments and environmental impact statements both the impact of federal government actions on climate change and the impact of climate change on proposed federal actions. These efforts were encouraged by the Council on Environmental Quality. However, implementation at the agency level has been uneven. Some Federal agencies have resisted making serious efforts to incorporate climate change impacts into their decision-making process. Moreover, the courts have not ...


Agency Statutory Abnegation In The Deregulatory Playbook, William W. Buzbee May 2019

Agency Statutory Abnegation In The Deregulatory Playbook, William W. Buzbee

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

If an agency newly declares that it lacks statutory power previously claimed, how should such a move—what this article calls agency statutory abnegation—be reviewed? Given the array of strategies an agency might use to make a policy change or move the law in a deregulatory direction, why might statutory abnegation be chosen? After all, it is always a perilous and likely doctrinally disadvantageous strategy for agencies. Nonetheless, agencies from time to time have utilized statutory abnegation claims as part of their justification for deregulatory shifts. Actions by agencies during 2017 and 2018, under the administration of President Donald ...


The Federal Government Has An Implied Moral Constitutional Duty To Protect Individuals From Harm Due To Climate Change: Throwing Spaghetti Against The Wall To See What Sticks, Hope M. Babcock May 2019

The Federal Government Has An Implied Moral Constitutional Duty To Protect Individuals From Harm Due To Climate Change: Throwing Spaghetti Against The Wall To See What Sticks, Hope M. Babcock

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

The continuing failure of the federal government to respond to the growing threat of climate change, despite affirmative duties to do so, creates a governance vacuum that the Constitution might help fill, if such a responsibility could be found within the document. This Article explores textual and non-textual constitutional support for that responsibility, finding that no single provision of the Constitution is a perfect fit for that responsibility. However, the document as a whole might support constitutionalizing an environmental protection norm as an individual right or affirmative government obligation given the norm's importance to the enjoyment of other constitutional ...


From Paris To Pittsburgh: U.S. State And Local Leadership In An Era Of Trump, Vicki Arroyo Apr 2019

From Paris To Pittsburgh: U.S. State And Local Leadership In An Era Of Trump, Vicki Arroyo

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

States and cities have long been leaders on clean energy and climate policy. Their work has informed development of federal policies including motor vehicle standards and the Clean Power Plan. With the election of President Trump and the increasingly severe impacts of climate change, subnational leadership has become even more important and urgent. In response, many states and cities have pledged to enact new policies to mitigate the effects of climate change and help communities adapt. This Article focuses on recent developments in subnational leadership on both climate mitigation and adaptation to demonstrate the breadth and depth of engagement by ...


From The Clean Power Plan To The Affordable Clean Energy Rule: How Regulated Entities Adapt To Regulatory Change And Uncertainty, Ryan Stoa Jan 2019

From The Clean Power Plan To The Affordable Clean Energy Rule: How Regulated Entities Adapt To Regulatory Change And Uncertainty, Ryan Stoa

Faculty Scholarship

Regulated entities often struggle to adapt to regulatory change and uncertainty. This is particularly true in the power and utilities sectors, where the scope and scale of project-level planning and management is broad, and changes to these processes can be highly disruptive. Regulatory disruption notwithstanding, some companies adapt to regulatory change and uncertainty better than others. Presently, there is a gap in understanding what these regulatory adaptation best practices might be for the power and utilities sectors.

When the federal Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) publicly proposed the Clean Power Plan (“CPP”) in 2014, stakeholders in the power and utilities sectors ...


Discordant Environmental Laws: Using Statutory Flexibility And Multi-Objective Optimization To Reconcile Conflicting Laws, Mary Jane Angelo Jan 2019

Discordant Environmental Laws: Using Statutory Flexibility And Multi-Objective Optimization To Reconcile Conflicting Laws, Mary Jane Angelo

UF Law Faculty Publications

The current morass of federal environmental laws has led to significant conflicts among statutes and the manner in which agencies implement them. In recent years, this quagmire of environmental laws has hindered the progress of a number of high-profile environmental regulatory programs and restoration projects. Neither the Courts nor legal scholars have developed approaches to resolving conflicts in a manner that harmonizes environmental statutes while at the same time protecting the most critical environmental resources. A standard methodology that optimizes the multiple objectives of environmental statutes and their implementing programs would greatly enhance decision-making and ensure that the most salient ...


Multilateral Economic Institutions And U.S. Foreign Policy: Hearing Before The Subcomm. On Multilateral Int'l Dev., Multilateral Insts., & Int'l Econ., Energy, & Envtl. Pol'y Of The S. Comm. On Foreign Relations, 115th Cong., Nov. 27, 2018 (Statement Of Jennifer A. Hillman), Jennifer A. Hillman Nov 2018

Multilateral Economic Institutions And U.S. Foreign Policy: Hearing Before The Subcomm. On Multilateral Int'l Dev., Multilateral Insts., & Int'l Econ., Energy, & Envtl. Pol'y Of The S. Comm. On Foreign Relations, 115th Cong., Nov. 27, 2018 (Statement Of Jennifer A. Hillman), Jennifer A. Hillman

Testimony Before Congress

Virtually every major international gathering of world leaders recently has ended in failure—or at least failure to reach enough agreement to issue a concluding statement or communique. These failures come at a time when many have been looking for signs that world leaders would come together to address the most pressing problems facing the world—including climate change, the breakdown in the rules of the international trading system, the need everywhere for good jobs that pay a living wage, and rapidly growing income inequality.

The failure of these meetings to produce formal agreements—or even specific paths to reaching ...


Environmental Protection Requires More Than Social Resilience, Michael P. Vandenbergh Oct 2018

Environmental Protection Requires More Than Social Resilience, Michael P. Vandenbergh

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

Achieving the green economy requires taking into account divisive politics and distributive justice.


Keynote: Motivating Private Climate Governance: The Role Of The Efficiency Gap, Michael P. Vandenbergh Jan 2018

Keynote: Motivating Private Climate Governance: The Role Of The Efficiency Gap, Michael P. Vandenbergh

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

In response to the shrinking federal role in environmental protection, many policy advocates have focused on the role of states and cities, but this symposium focuses on another important source of sustainability initiatives: the private sector, including corporations, households, civic and cultural organizations, religious organizations, private hospitals, colleges and universities, and other organizations. States, cities, and local governments are increasingly important, but the limited geographic reach of subnational governments and widespread concerns about the size and intrusiveness of the public sector constrain their ability to address many environmental problems. Private governance initiatives offer an opportunity to bypass concerns about big ...


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 ...


Coloring Outside The Lines: A Response To Professor Seamon’S Dismantling Monuments, Hope M. Babcock Jan 2018

Coloring Outside The Lines: A Response To Professor Seamon’S Dismantling Monuments, Hope M. Babcock

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

In Dismantling Monuments, Professor Richard H. Seamon defends President Donald Trump’s recent proclamations modifying the boundaries of two national monuments, Grand Staircase-Escalante and Bears Ears, that Presidents Clinton and Obama each designated at the ends of their Administrations. Professor Seamon is not alone in making these arguments, as I am not alone in saying that Professor Seamon’s arguments, while well-intentioned, are wrong. He exaggerates the persuasive power of congressional silence. He elevates the importance of the statute’s original intent. Professor Seamon and I read the text and legislative history of the Antiquities Act differently—he sees unlimited ...


Making Existing Homes Greener, James Smith Jan 2018

Making Existing Homes Greener, James Smith

Scholarly Works

The environmental movement that has taken hold in the last half-century includes the objective of reducing the adverse impacts buildings have on the natural environment. In the United States, this has manifested itself in changes in the design and construction of buildings. Modern buildings-those built recently-perform better with respect to some, but not all, environmental criteria than older buildings. The most prominent characteristic is the efficiency of energy use for heating, cooling, and appliances.

Even when the combination of building codes and voluntary standards work effectively to promote the construction of new green homes, they cannot provide a solution with ...


Environmental Law, Eleventh Circuit Survey, Travis M. Trimble Jan 2018

Environmental Law, Eleventh Circuit Survey, Travis M. Trimble

Scholarly Works

In 2017, district courts decided several issues that the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit had never addressed. The United States District Court for the Middle District of Georgia concluded that the Clean Water Act's (CWA) prohibition on the discharge of pollutants into waters of the United States without a permit extended to discharges into groundwater with a "direct hydrological connection" to surface waters within the Act's scope. The court also concluded that a state-permitted land application system, whereby wastewater is sprayed onto fields as means of treatment and disposal, constituted a "point source" within ...


Empirical Environmental Scholarship, Robert L. Fischman, Lydia Barbash-Riley Jan 2018

Empirical Environmental Scholarship, Robert L. Fischman, Lydia Barbash-Riley

Articles by Maurer Faculty

The most important development in legal scholarship over the past quarter century has been the rise of empirical research. Drawing upon the traditions of legal realism and the law and economics movement, a variety of social science techniques have delivered fresh perspectives and punctured false claims. But environmental law has been slow to adopt empirical tools, and our findings indicate that it lags behind other fields. There are several clear benefits from an empirical agenda to explore how to make environmental law more effective. But no previous article has applied the lessons from empirical scholarship in other fields to environmental ...


Foundations For Sustainable Development: Harmonizing Islam, Nature And Law, Norah Bin Hamad Jul 2017

Foundations For Sustainable Development: Harmonizing Islam, Nature And Law, Norah Bin Hamad

Dissertations & Theses

Human society is weakening Earth’s environment, its only home. In 2015, nations agreed on a new set of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to guide restoring and sustaining the wellbeing of peoples everywhere. If the SDGs are to succeed, all cultural and religious communities will need to urgently implement them. Islam offers a holistic view of God’s creation and the Qur’an clearly sets forth duties to care for the Earth. In the past, most people have ignored the world-wide trends of environmental degradation which scientist have reported. There is a pressing need to expand education and public awareness ...


Illegal Marijuana Cultivation On Public Lands: Our Federalism On A Very Bad Trip, Hope M. Babcock Jun 2017

Illegal Marijuana Cultivation On Public Lands: Our Federalism On A Very Bad Trip, Hope M. Babcock

Georgetown Law Faculty Publications and Other Works

Fueled by increasing demand for marijuana, illegal cultivation of the drug on public lands is causing massive environmental harm. The federal government lacks the resources to wage what would be a difficult and costly campaign to eradicate these illegal grow sites and instead focuses its limited resources on enforcing the federal marijuana ban. Marijuana decriminalization might allow legally grown marijuana to squeeze out its illegal counterpart, but the political likelihood of decriminalization is low. The key is reducing demand for the illegal drug by changing public buying preferences. However, doing this depends on an available legal alternative. This Article discusses ...


Litz V. Maryland Department Of The Environment: Maryland’S Decision That Inaction Can Support An Inverse Condemnation Claim, Kerri Morrison Apr 2017

Litz V. Maryland Department Of The Environment: Maryland’S Decision That Inaction Can Support An Inverse Condemnation Claim, Kerri Morrison

Maryland Law Review Online

No abstract provided.


Blood Biofuels, Nadia B. Ahmad Jan 2017

Blood Biofuels, Nadia B. Ahmad

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Trust Or Bust: Complications With Tribal Trust Obligations And Environmental Sovereignty, Nadia B. Ahmad Jan 2017

Trust Or Bust: Complications With Tribal Trust Obligations And Environmental Sovereignty, Nadia B. Ahmad

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


The Baseline Bar, Nadia B. Ahmad Jan 2017

The Baseline Bar, Nadia B. Ahmad

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


Beach Law Cleanup: How Sea-Level Rise Has Eroded The Ambulatory Boundaries Legal Framework, Alyson C. Flournoy Jan 2017

Beach Law Cleanup: How Sea-Level Rise Has Eroded The Ambulatory Boundaries Legal Framework, Alyson C. Flournoy

UF Law Faculty Publications

As the sea level rises, the boundaries between privately owned coastal property and sovereign submerged lands held in public trust are becoming increasingly contested. The common law doctrines that determine these boundaries under conditions of change—primarily accretion, erosion, reliction, and avulsion—have important implications for all those involved in adaptation planning along our coasts. This includes private owners of coastal property, local government officials seeking to develop and implement adaptation strategies, beachgoers seeking to use shrinking beaches, beach-tourism-dependent businesses, and courts facing cases involving boundary disputes at the water’s moving edge. This paper raises the questions of whether ...


Recent Developments In Climate Justice, Randall S. Abate, Rachel Jean-Baptiste, Maria Antonia Tigre, Patricia Ferreira, Wil Burns Jan 2017

Recent Developments In Climate Justice, Randall S. Abate, Rachel Jean-Baptiste, Maria Antonia Tigre, Patricia Ferreira, Wil Burns

Journal Publications

Climate justice can be defined generally as addressing the disproportionate burden of climate change impacts on poor and marginalized communities. It seeks to promote more equitable allocation of these burdens at the local, national, and global levels through proactive regulatory initiatives and reactive judicial remedies that draw on international human rights and domestic environmental justice theories. Yet, efforts to define climate justice as a field of inquiry remain elusive and underinclusive; a recent book, Climate Justice: Case Studies in Global and Regional Governance Challenges (ELI Press 2016), seeks to fill that void by providing an overview of the landscape of ...


Agenda: Flpma Turns 40, University Of Colorado Boulder. Getches-Wilkinson Center For Natural Resources, Energy, And The Environment Oct 2016

Agenda: Flpma Turns 40, University Of Colorado Boulder. Getches-Wilkinson Center For Natural Resources, Energy, And The Environment

FLPMA Turns 40 (October 21)

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) administers approximately 245 million acres of our public lands and yet, for most of our nation's history, these lands seemed largely destined to end up in private hands. Even when the Taylor Grazing Act of 1934 ushered in an important era of better managing public grazing districts and "promoting the highest use of the public lands," such use of our public lands still was plainly considered temporary, "pending its final disposal." It was not until 1976 with the passage of the Federal Land Policy and Management Act (FLPMA) that congress adopted a policy ...


Blood In Honduras, Silence In The United States, Lauren Carasik Aug 2016

Blood In Honduras, Silence In The United States, Lauren Carasik

Media Presence

No abstract provided.


Inquiry Into The Implementation Of Bush’S Executive Order 13211 And The Impact On Environmental And Public Health Regulation, Elizabeth Ann Glass Geltman, Gunwant Gill, Miriam Jovanovic Apr 2016

Inquiry Into The Implementation Of Bush’S Executive Order 13211 And The Impact On Environmental And Public Health Regulation, Elizabeth Ann Glass Geltman, Gunwant Gill, Miriam Jovanovic

Publications and Research

Executive Order 13211, promulgated in 2001, requires the federal government to consider the impact of federal action on energy independence as part of the George W. Bush’s National Energy Policy. This law review examines whether EO 13211 was used to curtail environmental protection and natural resource conservation. The article begins with a review of the procedure required of federal agencies under EO 13211 and its associated documents. The paper then examines case law and published federal rulemaking proceedings and examines how federal agencies apply tests to evaluate the potential energy effect. The study concludes that EO 13211 strikes a ...


Agenda: A Celebration Of The Work Of Charles Wilkinson: Served With Tasty Stories And Some Slices Of Roast, University Of Colorado Boulder. Getches-Wilkinson Center For Natural Resources, Energy, And The Environment Mar 2016

Agenda: A Celebration Of The Work Of Charles Wilkinson: Served With Tasty Stories And Some Slices Of Roast, University Of Colorado Boulder. Getches-Wilkinson Center For Natural Resources, Energy, And The Environment

A Celebration of the Work of Charles Wilkinson (Martz Winter Symposium, March 10-11)

Conference held at the University of Colorado, Wolf Law Building, Wittemyer Courtroom, Thursday, March 10th and Friday, March 11th, 2016.

Conference moderators, panelists and speakers included University of Colorado Law School professors Phil Weiser, Sarah Krakoff, William Boyd, Kristen Carpenter, Britt Banks, Harold Bruff, Richard Collins, Carla Fredericks, Mark Squillace, and Charles Wilkinson

"We celebrate the work of Distinguished Professor Charles Wilkinson, a prolific and passionate writer, teacher, and advocate for the people and places of the West. Charles's influence extends beyond place, yet his work has always originated in a deep love of and commitment to particular places ...


A Tale Of Two Continents: Environmental Management-Based Regulation In The European Union And The United States, Rachel E. Deming Jan 2016

A Tale Of Two Continents: Environmental Management-Based Regulation In The European Union And The United States, Rachel E. Deming

Faculty Scholarship

No abstract provided.


The Brave New Path Of Energy Federalism, Jim Rossi Jan 2016

The Brave New Path Of Energy Federalism, Jim Rossi

Vanderbilt Law School Faculty Publications

For much of the past 80 years courts have fixated on dual sovereignty as the organizing federalism paradigm under New Deal era energy statutes. Dual sovereignty’s reign emphasized a jurisdictional “bright line,” with a fixed, legalistic boundary between federal and state regulators. This Article explores how recent Supreme Court decisions limit dual sovereignty’s role as the organizing federalism principle under energy statutes.

These recent decisions do not approach federal-state jurisdiction as either/or proposition, but instead recognize it is concurrent in certain contexts. Concurrent jurisdiction opens up a brave new path of possibilities for energy federalism but also ...


Environmental Law, Big Data, And The Torrent Of Singularities, William Boyd Jan 2016

Environmental Law, Big Data, And The Torrent Of Singularities, William Boyd

Articles

How will big data impact environmental law in the near future? This Essay imagines one possible future for environmental law in 2030 that focuses on the implications of big data for the protection of public health from risks associated with pollution and industrial chemicals. It assumes the perspective of an historian looking back from the end of the twenty-first century at the evolution of environmental law during the late twentieth and early twenty-first centuries. The premise of the Essay is that big data will drive a major shift in the underlying knowledge practices of environmental law (along with other areas ...


Saving The Serengeti: Africa's New International Judicial Environmentalism, James T. Gathii Jan 2016

Saving The Serengeti: Africa's New International Judicial Environmentalism, James T. Gathii

Faculty Publications & Other Works

This Article analyzes recent environmental law decisions of Africa's fledgling international courts. In 2014, for example, the East African Court of Justice stopped the government of Tanzania from building a road across Serengeti National Park because of its potential adverse environmental impacts. Decisions like these have inaugurated a new era of enhanced environmental judicial protection in Africa. This expansion into environmental law decision-making by Africa's international trade courts contrasts with other international courts that are designed to specialize on one issue area such as human rights or international trade, but not both. By contrast, Africa's international courts ...