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

2006

Environmental Law

Cornell University Law School

Articles 1 - 4 of 4

Full-Text Articles in Law

Did Nepa Drown New Orleans? The Levees, The Blame Game, And The Hazards Of Hindsight, Thomas O. Mcgarity, Douglas A. Kysar Sep 2006

Did Nepa Drown New Orleans? The Levees, The Blame Game, And The Hazards Of Hindsight, Thomas O. Mcgarity, Douglas A. Kysar

Cornell Law Faculty Publications

This Article highlights the hazards of hindsight analysis of the causes of catastrophic events, focusing on theories of why the New Orleans levees failed during Hurricane Katrina in 2005 and particularly on the theory that the levee failures were "caused" by a 1977 National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) lawsuit that resulted in a temporary injunction against the Army Corps of Engineers' hurricane protection project for New Orleans. The Article provides a detailed historical reconstruction of the decision process that eventuated in the New Orleans storm surge protection system, focusing both on the political and legal factors involved and on the ...


Discounting, On Stilts, Douglas A. Kysar Aug 2006

Discounting, On Stilts, Douglas A. Kysar

Cornell Law Faculty Publications

This paper provides a critical overview of several articles presented at the Intergenerational Discounting and Intergenerational Equity Conference held at the University of Chicago Law School on April 27-28, 2006. First, it demonstrates that conventional normative justifications offered for the use of discounting future costs and benefits for policy analysis in the intergenerational context do not withstand scrutiny. Second, it observes that the compensatory transfers that are sometimes thought to sanitize the cost-benefit procedure in the intergenerational context are deeply problematic, both in their theoretical construction and in their practical adequacy for the tasks they are being deployed to accomplish ...


It Might Have Been: Risk, Precaution, And Opportunity Costs, Douglas A. Kysar Aug 2006

It Might Have Been: Risk, Precaution, And Opportunity Costs, Douglas A. Kysar

Cornell Law Faculty Publications

This Article, which is part of a larger project on the competing merits of cost-benefit analysis (CBA) and the precautionary principle (PP) as competing policymaking paradigms for environmental, health, and safety regulation, examines one specific plank of the case against the PP: the claim that the principle's ignorance of the opportunity costs of precaution leads to indeterminate or impoverishing policy advice. Because PP defenders emphasize the limits of human knowledge and the frequency of unpleasant surprises from technology and industrial development, they prefer an ex ante stance of precaution whenever a proposed activity meets some threshold possibility of causing ...


Disappearing Acts – Toward A Global Civil Liability Regime For Pollution Damage Resulting From Offshore Oil And Gas Exploration, Kissi Agyebeng Feb 2006

Disappearing Acts – Toward A Global Civil Liability Regime For Pollution Damage Resulting From Offshore Oil And Gas Exploration, Kissi Agyebeng

Cornell Law School J.D. Student Research Papers

Civil liability for pollution damage is recognized and firmly established under international law. However, there is no global international treaty that addresses this issue with respect to offshore oil and gas exploration. This may be due partly to the infrequency of the occurrence of offshore oil well blowouts. However, offshore operations represent a constant threat to the marine environment since the risk of a blowout leading to an ecological disaster is ever present. The trend has been the adoption of regional agreements to tackle the issue. However, most of the regional arrangements deal with the issue in a sidelong manner ...