Certificate(s): Public Interest and Social Justice Law (List B)
Advanced exploration of legal issues involved in current efforts to halt degradation of the environment. Emphasis on major responsibilities of environmental lawyers in serving environmental protection goals, as well as key considerations of justice. Topics include fairness in enforcement proceedings, citizen access to regulatory decision making, and “environmental racism” impacts of hazardous waste facility siting. Students select individual or small group research projects and presentation on environment law topics.
This course will focus on the legal frameworks relevant to environmental justice, with an emphasis on the laws, institutions, and mechanisms available to lawyers who seek to serve communities facing environmental racism, disparate impacts from climate change and other environmental hazards, and infrastructure deficits, among other issues. The course will also take an international and comparative view, looking not only at case studies and legal frameworks from the United States but also from developing international and foreign legal standards around the human right to a healthy environment, the rights of nature, climate justice, and related norms.