Law Course Catalog

7568. Climate Law

3.00 credits

Prerequisites: None.

Grading Basis: Graded

The law, like nature, abhors a vacuum. However, into the federal government's climate change policy void have rushed a series of state, local, and international policy and legal initiatives. With law firms creating departments devoted to climate issues, the time seems right to develop across the country a cohesive framework for the study of "Climate Law". The course will study changes in law and policy ranging from the Clean Air Act and the Kyoto Protocol, to the law of nuisance, land use, securities regulation, and energy. The readings will be organized chronologically, beginning with a thorough review of the Clean Air Act, through the successful cap & trade systems for sulfur-dioxide, to the Kyoto Protocol, Massachusetts v. EPA, the current litigation making its way through the federal system, and the area of local and state laws and initiatives that have been enacted over the last several years. Guest speakers in climatology, energy law, and climate practice will, schedules permitting, supplement the syllabus. Given the timing of the course offering (during the first 100 days of a new presidential administration), it is likely that substantial time may be devoted to new federal proposals. Students will be graded in three parts: in-class participation, an in-class project, and a final paper (which accounts for the majority of the grade).