Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Protected Lands SSRN

There are a lot of SSRN eJournals out there. I subscribe to more thanI need to, but a new eJournal taht debuted a few months ago has really been a fun aggregation of articles.

Nancy McLaughlin (Utah Professor) and James Olmsted (Oregon Attorney) have created the "Protected Lands Law & Policy e Journal." It is the only journal I am aware of with an attorney editor and co-sponsorship from a law firm. [Maybe there are tons, but I just don't have to subscribe to them.]

The journal's description:

This eJournal distributes working and accepted paper abstracts addressing the law and policies relating to the protection of land for its ecological, natural, scenic, historic, recreational, cultural, or resource values. Protected lands can be either public or private lands, and include wilderness areas; wildlife refuges and preserves; local, state, and national parks; and Forest Service and BLM lands. Of particular interest are fee title lands held by charitable conservation organizations (land trusts) and lands protected by conservation easements held by land trusts or governmental entities. Protected lands may also result from the operation of environmental law regimes, such as the creation of Habitat Conservation Plans under the U.S. Endangered Species Act and wetland mitigation banks under the U.S. Clean Water Act. Issues relating to the exercise of Native American Sovereignty or Native American statutory and treaty rights, as well as the protection of urban lands, including urban parks, gardens, and "foodscapes," are also pertinent to this eJournal. Because existing human occupation and use of land often conflicts with protecting the land, this eJournal invites discussion of social issues arising from the removal of people from land or limiting uses of land. Land protection also raises economic issues, including reduction in the value of land and its income producing potential; local, state, and federal tax incentive issues; and the commoditization of property rights through, for example, transfer of development rights programs, carbon offset programs, mitigation banks, and provision of natural or ecosystem services. Land protection raises further issues relating to nonprofit governance, the laws governing the administration of charitable gifts, and the role of the courts as well as federal and state regulators, including the Bureau of Land Management, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the Internal Revenue Service, and state attorneys general, in ensuring the continued protection of the land. This eJournal is international and interdisciplinary and welcomes submissions from around the globe.

How can I not love an eJournal specifically interested in conservation easements! The journal editors and advisory board are the heavy hitters in conservation easement scholarship (as well as experts in environmental and land use law).

- Jessie Owley



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