Saturday, July 16, 2005

D.C. Circuit upholds EPA's decision to not regulate carbon dioxide

On Friday, July 15, the D.C. Circuit in a split decision (2-1) upheld EPA's decision not to regulate carbon dioxide. 

The court's opinion was penned by Judge Randolph.  The court held that, where the standing inquiry and merits so overlap, the court has jurisdiction to determine the merits.  The court then declined to decide whether EPA had authority to regulate carbon dioxide, but concluded that EPA had properly exercised its discretion not to regulate.  Judge Sentelle concurred in judgment (ala Hamdi) and wrote a dissent concluding that the petitioners lacked standing.  Judge Tatel wrote a dissenting opinion.  He concluded that petitioners have standing and rejected the court's holding that there is an Article III exception where the jurisdictional question and the merits overlapped. He indicated that EPA has authority to regulate.  He also concluded that, while the arbitrary and capricious standard applies to EPAs decisions,  EPA must make a reasoned judgment whether greenhouse gases meet the endangerment standard and if they do, EPA must regulate. 

A request for rehearing and rehearing en banc is almost certain.

Because the majority did not reach the statutory authority argument, the case should not affect California's controls on carbon dioxide emissions from vehicles.

Here are the opinions.  Massachusetts v. EPA
Link: Court Backs EPA on Lack of Greenhouse Gas Limits.

July 16, 2005 | Permalink | TrackBack (1)

Friday, July 15, 2005

That's real money

The EU European Court of Justice fined France 20 million Euros for violating EU fisheries laws during the past 20 years.  Link: France lands record EU fine - London Times

July 15, 2005 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Effects of climate change on Mt. Everest may force climate change actions

BBC reported that the UNESCO World Heritage Committee declared that cliimate change does pose a threat to natural and cultural World Heritage sites.  The Committee stopped short of listing Sagarmatha National Park in the Himalayas, the Huascaran National Park in Peru and the Belize Barrer reef on the danger list.  Had the sites been listed, the 180 nations that are parties to the World Heritage Convention  would have been legally obligated to cut greenhouse gas emissions as a means to protect the sites.  The Committee launched an investigation to determine whether the sites should be placed on the danger list Link: BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | UN investigates Everest threat.

July 15, 2005 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

8 sites added to World Heritage Site list

One current site was expanded and seven new sites were added yesterday. Link: UNESCO World Heritage Centre.  The sites range from the Gulf of California, Norweigan fjords, Thai forests, a South African meteor impact site, Egyptian whale fossils, an Indian Himalayan valley, a Panamanian marine site, and the Shiretoko pennisula in Japan.   See the IUCN description of these sites.

July 15, 2005 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Eco-designs on future cities

The startling figures are that 1 billion people are squatters now and 3 billion squatters are expected to inhabit the world's cities by 2050. Link: BBC NEWS | Science/Nature | Eco-designs on future cities.

July 14, 2005 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Wildfire Management

I have been reviewing the excellent casebook produced by Christine Klein, Federico Chever, and  Bret Birdsong.  The last chapter deals with wildfire management, which has captured the attention of my pyromaniacal natural resources students.  For those of you who teach this topic, GAO has just issued a report on US wildfire management efforts.  Link: GAO wildfire management policy options.

July 14, 2005 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Chinese bid for energy resources

Last week's question: should US erect barriers to Chinese ownership of US resources and if so, how?  There were no takers on the question, but Congressional hearings started today.  Link: Critics see security threat in China oil bid - Yahoo! News

The Washington Post reports that the Chinese are moving in on oil companies because they fear US hegemony of Middle East oil resources.  Explaining China's Interest in Oil Companies.

China is also reportedly offering assurances that it will not back off of its offer based on U.S. government review.  UNOCAL board offered assurances

July 13, 2005 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Monday, July 11, 2005

European Commission Enforcing the Strategic Environmental Assessment Directive

The European Commission has issued a final notice to 11 nations

Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Greece, Spain, Finland-Aland, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Portugal and Slovakia

for failing to finalize national legislation implementing the Strategic Environmental Assessment directive.  A referral to the European Court of Justice and ultimately monetary penalties could follow.  Link: EUROPA - Rapid - Press Releases.  This action was accompanied by similar enforcement action regarding electrical wastes, noise, and public information access.

July 11, 2005 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Where or where???


Our deans' lists of where to publish are probably:
Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Stanford, Michigan, NYU, Georgetown, etc.

But, for "impact", as measured by John Doyle of Washington & Lee
go elsewhere....

18 Yale Journal on Regulation
19 Harvard Environmental Law Review
53 Columbia Journal of Environmental Law
72 Stanford Environmental Law Journal
101 Duke Environmental Law & Policy Forum
122 Virginia Environmental Law Journal
138 Boston College Environmental Affairs Law Review
149 Environmental Law
164 Ecology Law Quarterly
239 UCLA Journal of Environmental Law & Policy

Most Cited Journals List

July 11, 2005 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Sustainable Development Symposium

Jim Salzman of Duke Law School participated in the AAAS symposium on sustainable development last Friday.  Here's the report.

Link: Experts Explore Science's Unanswered Questions.

In the final discussion of the afternoon, "Sustainable Development," the panel agreed that overall population growth itself isn't going to be the major influence on the state of the world's ecosystems. Rather, as ecologist Stuart Pimm of Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, explained, the greatest change in impact will come from the 1 billion people--think China--whose living standards are poised to rival those of North Americans. Cheap and clean energy won't necessarily obviate the impact, noted James Salzman of Duke University Law School in Durham, because other problems such as habitat destruction would remain. The big challenge will be how to deal with the interaction of multiple threats, said William Clark of Harvard University in Boston.

July 11, 2005 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

G-8 Plan Light on Climate Change Commitments

The Policy of Global Warming -- G8 developments

   Lots of action on the global warming front.

The G8 issued a communique recognizing the importance of climate change and inviting an international dialogue on climate change, clean energy, and sustainable development.  G8 Communique The dialogue would monitor implementation of the G8's newly created plan of action. G8 Plan of Action The Pew Center has summarized the G8 developments.  Pew Center Summary

The National Academies of 11 major nations issued a joint statement on climate change.  National Academies Statement   The CEOs of 24 global corporations endorsed government action to provide development of and protection for market investment in climate change. Business Statement 

July 11, 2005 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Environmental Article Hit Parade

Statistical Note:
Three word titles are optimal and there appears to be an inverse correlation between title length/subtitles and rank.  A very short attention span?!?  :)

The Top 10 for recently posted papers (WITH LINKED ABSTRACTS) are:
Rank    Title                                         Author                Most Recent Revision   Hits

1       Chevron Step Zero                Cass Sunstein    June 23, 2005              196 Hits
2      A New Progressivism              Cass Sunstein  June 8, 2005                 144 Hits
3     Irreversible and Catastrophic  Cass Sunstein   June 24, 2005              116 Hits
4     An Economic Theory  of                Brett Frishmann        April 22, 2005            91 Hits
       Infrastructure and Commons
       Management                                 s
5      Gender, Race, and Risk Perception     Dan Kahan        June 22, 2005         87 Hits
        The Influence of Cultural                        Donald Braman
        Stress Anxiety       
6     The Private Life of Public Law   Michael Vandenbergh    June 1, 1005    67 Hits
7    The Story of Lucas v. South                    Carol Rose        April 25, 2005           57 Hits
      Carolina Coastal Council:
     Between the Developers and the Deep Blue Sea      
8   Signaling Social Responsibility:        Jason Johnston        June 9, 2005            55 Hits
      On the Law and Economics of
      Market Incentives for Corporate
      Environmental Performance
9    Regulation by Adaptive Management:
      is it Possible?                              J.B. Ruhl             June 8, 2005            52 Hits
        is it Possible                                           
10    The (Non)Uniqueness of
        Environmental Law                     Jay Wexler            May 18, 2005            40 Hits
Link: SSRN Top Downloads.

July 10, 2005 | Permalink | TrackBack (0)