Tuesday, May 3, 2016

My TED Talk: Four ways the sharing economy is changing us

I did a TED Talk back in April on the sharing economy hosted at the local TEDx Boise.  The video from the talk was just released yesterday, and I've re-posted below.  The talk incorporates many ideas from my two articles on the sharing economy (here and here).  

If you have 13 minutes to spare, I'll give you four big ideas worthy of cocktail party chatter, if not the faculty lounge.

 

 

May 3, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, May 2, 2016

UDenver Interdisciplinary Research Incubator for the Study of (In) Equality (IRISE) offering two-year postdoctoral research fellow: Applications due May 9

The IRISE postdoctoral fellowship will provide opportunities to conduct environmental justice research with a fully-equipped Geographical Information Systems (GIS) laboratory, as well as access to robust documentary and archival collections, local government officials, community activists, and policy institutes, including the Lincoln Institute for Land Policy. In addition to post-dissertation research support, the postdoctoral fellow will have the opportunity to work with mentors toward providing a nucleus for a continued scholarly collaboration, interact with the faculty and graduate students in each of the sponsoring departments and divisions, and receive clerical and research support sufficient to allow the completion of a major research product during his or her time at DU. The fellow will spend the majority of time engaged in independent research, scholarship, community engagement or creative work under the guidance of departmental faculty members. Fellows will also be expected to be active in the DU community of scholars engaged in research and teaching relating to the study of inequality and environmental justice locally and nationally. Fellows will teach one course in their specialty the first year and two courses in their specialty the second year. The successful candidate will also be expected to attend and contribute to a weekly seminar and support other initiatives of the IRISE, such as promotion of conferences and symposia.

Position Summary

The University of Denver Interdisciplinary Research Incubator for the Study of (In) Equality or IRISE is seeking a two-year postdoctoral research fellow beginning September 1, 2016. We are seeking candidates who are capable of bringing together insights from the disciplines of geography, social work, law, and/or a related field to the interdisciplinary study of the relationship between racial, ethnic, and socio-economic inequality and decisions about environmental justice in United States and around the world. The fellow will be housed in the Center for Sustainability at the University of Denver, with co-supervision and mentorship by faculty from Geography & the Environment, Social Work, the Center for Sustainability as well as the Sturm College of Laws Rocky Mountain Land Use Institute and Community Economic Development Clinic. DU faculty members from these departments will provide guidance and support throughout the fellowship period. The ideal candidate would have training or a strong interest in environmental justice and interdisciplinary academic endeavors. Candidates should be committed to working with diverse student and community populations. We do not expect the candidate to have experience in all areas of the fellowship, as training will be provided by the mentors. In addition, because of the value of lived experiences in the investigation and understanding of inequality, we especially encourage applications from historically underrepresented groups. The appointment term is September 1, 2016 - August 31, 2017; however, the initial term may be renewed for an additional year.

Essential Functions

  • Teach one advanced undergraduate course in year one and two courses, including an interdisciplinary graduate class, in year two.
  • Participate in a quarterly educational inequities research group and colloquiums for the DU campus as part of the IRISE lecture series.
  • Participate in campus-wide forums exploring questions of compositional diversity and inclusive excellence at DU and the broader academy.
  • Present research findings to interdisciplinary academic audiences and community partners.
  • Document and memorialize the various efforts and initiatives at DU that are related to environmental justice and sustainability in order to help advance the interdisciplinary work in these related fields.

Required Qualifications

  • PhD, SJD, or JD in Geography, Environmental Science, Urban Planning, American Studies, Social Work, Law or a related field.
  • Completed all requirements for terminal degree by June 30, 2016.

No more than 3 years from the awarding of degree (i.e., September 2013) To apply, please complete the on-line application at https://dujobs.silkroad.com/ and attach the following:

  • a letter of application (including a statement of research and teaching interests)
  • a curriculum vitae
  • reference listing (minimum of three (3) references)

Candidates must apply online to be considered, only applications submitted online will be accepted.  Once within the job description online, please click "New Resume/CV" at the bottom of the page to begin application.

The online application must be completed and submitted no later than 6:00 a.m. Mountain Standard Time on May 9, 2016. Inquiries about this position can be made to search co-chair, Fred Cheever (fcheever@law.du.edu).

May 2, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Colorado Supremes Invalidate Fracking Moratoria, Bans

In long-awaited decisions, today the Colorado Supreme Court invalidated the City of Fort Collins fracking moratorium and the City of Longmont's fracking ban as pre-empted by state law. The decisions can be found here.  The cities had argued that their regulation of fracking were valid land use controls, but the Court did not agree.

However, the fight from fracking in Colorado is far from over, as signature gathering is underway for several ballot initiatives for the November election.

Jamie Baker Roskie

 

May 2, 2016 in Environmentalism, Local Government, Oil & Gas | Permalink | Comments (1)

Zoning’s Centennial, Part 17: Water Scarcity and Land Use Planning: A Series by John R. Nolon

Part 17

Zoning’s Centennial

John R. Nolon

Distinguished Professor of Law, Pace Law School

Counsel, Land Use Law Center

Water Scarcity and Land Use Planning

When zoning was created, the availability of cheap and plentiful water was an unquestioned assumption. In zoning’s blueprint, there are few designs for water supply planning. This is the case even though land use planning determines water demand; the number and type of buildings allowed under zoning determine the per capita water use in a given community. Water supply planning was traditionally the province of the municipal water district, a separate water and sanitation district, or similar entity. Most of these were organized under state statutes that were originally – and remain today – legally disconnected from the zoning and land use planning enabling acts. Water demand and water supply planning have never been connected legally or institutionally.

This separation is a serious flaw in the legal system, particularly in those states with drought, limited snow melt, and declining surface and ground water supplies. Recent U.S. Drought Monitor reports state that 38 out of 50 states are abnormally dry. Sixteen of them are in a moderate drought, nine are in a severe drought, two are in extreme drought, and California is in an exceptional drought. 

According to EPA, relief is not on the horizon: “Scientists project that climate change will make some of these extreme weather events more likely to occur and/or more likely to be severe." Relatedly, according to NASA, “continued increases in human-produced greenhouse gas emissions drive up the risk of severe droughts in these regions."

These predictions highlight the importance of connecting water supply and land use planning. Not only can land use planning reduce emissions, but, as the Land Use Law Center’s recent experience in the Interior West demonstrates, land use planning can also reduce per capita water use by up to 140 gallons per day. With the populations of these states projected to increase – by as much as 100% in Colorado – reducing per capita consumption is the logical point at which to begin a comprehensive plan to balance supply and demand.

Zoning that permits large lots, low-density, and dispersed development increases water use per household. Compact, mixed-use development requires less water per household than single-family housing. The infrastructure requirements of both types of development are quite different.

In Utah, planners have determined that water demand drops from approximately 220 gallons per capita per day at a density of two units per acre, to about 110 gallons per acre at a density of five units per acre.  More modestly, increasing residential density by 20% can yield a 10% per capita water savings. A study of household water use in Sacramento, CA showed 20-30% less water use in a new urban development than in the suburbs. Because of these significant effects, the link between land use patterns created by local zoning and water conservation needs to be clearly understood. Very few other water planning strategies can have a greater effect on limiting consumption.

Communities should begin by integrating water-efficient land use patterns and strategies into their comprehensive plans. Once this initial step is completed, this vision can be implemented through changes to the zoning code that permit water-efficient land uses in areas targeted for development, discourage development in areas targeted for conservation, and foster building types and landscapes that minimize the use of water.

Similarly, communities with limited room to grow can modify systems to accommodate higher densities and infill development. New forms of zoning, rather than those found in traditional residential zoning district provisions, can be adopted; ones that use new and varied ratios regarding setbacks, lot coverage, open space, livability space, and parking.

Building and land use regulations can reduce water use in several other ways; for example, by mandating water-efficient interior and exterior fixtures and by requiring exterior landscaping practices and plants that reduce water use.

The Land Use Law Center’s Guidebook for Municipal Planners (cited below) in the Interior West states discusses and illustrates several options for communities to consider in their efforts to foster water-conserving land use patterns, such as:

  • Incorporate water-conserving land uses into as-of-right permitted uses;
  • Foster water-efficient densities by permitting accessory dwelling units;
  • Incorporate water-conserving land uses into conditionally permitted uses;
  • Conditionally permit water-intensive uses upon water-conservation measures;
  • Condition rezoning on water-conserving practices;
  • Incentivize water conservation through bonus density zoning;
  • Use planned unit development regulations to foster water conservation;
  • Create a water conservation floating zone;
  • Use overlay zoning to designate areas appropriate for conservation and those prioritized for growth; and
  • Establish a transfer of development rights program with sending districts to preserve green infrastructure and receiving districts to channel economic development.

Which of these options to choose depends on a number of factors, including the current land use configuration and types of buildings in the community. The pattern of development fostered and types of buildings allowed by zoning must respect the current architecture and land development of the community and build gradually from that base.  The biggest factors to consider are density, the utilization of present infrastructure, and the cost of needed additional infrastructure.

For more information see the Land Use Law Center’s Integrating Water Efficiency into Land Use Planning in the Interior West: A Guidebook for Municipal Planners (forthcoming), which will be available through Western Resources Advocates, www.westernresource.org/landuse

Links to previous posts in the Zoning Centennial’s Series:

Part 1: The Need for Public Regulation of Land Use – The First Comprehensive Zoning Law

Part 2:  The Delegation of Legal Authority To Adopt Zoning

Part 3: Zoning Was Contagious, But Was It Constitutional?

Part 4: The Unintended Consequences of Euclidean Zoning

Part 5: The Most Appropriate Use of the Land

Part 6: The Surprising Origins of Smart Growth

Part 7: The Advent of Local Environmental Law

Part 8: Regionalism and ‘Wistful Hoping’

Part 9: Mixed Signals: Exclusionary Zoning and Fairness

Part 10: The Emergence of the Law of Sustainable Development

Part 11: Designing Density

Part 12: Green Infrastructure

Part 12B: Land Use and Energy Conservation

Part 14: Transit Oriented Development

Part 15: Zoning in Solar and Clean Energy

Part 16: Fracking as an Industrial Use under Zoning

May 2, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Land-use law articles posted to SSRN in April

 The spring brings the fruits of an academic year's research, and that is evident in the number of articles posted to the SSRN Property, Land Use & Real Estate Law eJournal in April.  Here are the articles from April, listed here in reverse-chronological order.  As in previous months, I have separated articles from those scholars at U.S.-institutions from those at non-U.S. institutions.  I do this quickly, so I apologize for any errors.

Scholars based at U.S. institutions:


 Avoiding Atlantis: Protecting Urban Cultural Heritage from Disaster
How Cities Will Save the World, Ray Brescia and John Marshall eds, Ashgate Publishing, 2016
Ryan Rowberry 
Georgia State University - College of Law 

 Allocation Wells: Lessor's Remedies for Multi-Tract Horizontal Wells Drilled Without Pooling Authority
68 Baylor L. Rev. 101 (2016), U of Houston Law Center No. 2016-A-10
Bret Wells 
University of Houston Law Center 


 The Challenge of Inclusion
Temple Law Review, Forthcoming
Kenneth Stahl 
Chapman University - Dale Fowler School of Law 

 Affirmatively Furthering Neighborhood Choice: Vacant Property Strategies and Fair Housing
University of Memphis Law Review, Vol. 46, 2016
James J. Kelly Jr. 
Notre Dame Law School 

 Fiscal Policy and Urban Growth Challenges: US Perspectives on Property Tax Reform in Warsaw
61 Studia Iuridica (2016)
Christopher K. Odinet 
Southern University Law Center 

 Western Sparks: The Constitutionality of Federal Land Management from the Founding to the Civil War
Michael Schearer 
University of Maryland, Francis King Carey School of Law, Students 

 Reconceptualizing 'For Public Use' in the Aftermath of Horne v. Department of Agriculture
University of Detroit Mercy Law Review, Vol. 94, 2016
Joshua B Lanphear 

 Rerum Novarum: New Things and Recent Paradigms of Property Law
47 U. Pac. L. Rev. 183-197 (2016), Florida International University Legal Studies Research Paper No. 6-10
M. C. Mirow 
Florida International University (FIU) - College of Law 

Tribes and Pipelines
Lewis & Clark Law Review, Vol. 20, 2016
Nadia B. Ahmad 
Barry University Dwayne O. Andreas School of Law 

 What Is a Dedication?
Robert Ongom Cwinya-ai 
Port of New Orleans Legal Office 
Date Posted: April 20, 2016

 Formalizing Rural Land Rights in West Africa: Early Evidence from a Randomized Impact Evaluation in Benin
World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 7435
Markus P. Goldstein Kenneth Houngbedji Florence Kondylis Michael O'Sullivan and Harris Selod 
World Bank , Paris School of Economics (PSE) , Columbia University - Columbia Earth Institute , World Bank and National Institute for Agricultural Research (INRA) 

 Securing Property Rights in Transition: Lessons from Implementation of China's Rural Land Contracting Law
World Bank Policy Research Working Paper No. 4447
Klaus Deininger and Songqing Jin 
World Bank - Development Economics Group (DEC) and Michigan State University 


 Winfield V. City of New York: Testing the Limits of Disparate-Impact Liability after Texas Department of Housing and Community Affairs V. The Inclusive Communities Project, Inc.
24 Journal of Affordable Housing and Community Development Law 287 (2015)
Andrea L. McArdle 
CUNY School of Law 

 #BlackLivesMatter, Disparate-Impact, and The Property Agenda
43 S.U. L. Rev.___ (2016)
Shanado Lamar Gardner 
Southern University Law Center 

 A Historical Perspective on Montana Property Tax: 25 Years of Statewide Appraisal and Appeal Practice
Montana Law Review, 2009
KE Powell 
Ohio Northern University - Pettit College of Law 

 Emerging Legal and Institutional Responses to Sea-Level Rise in Florida and Beyond
FSU College of Law, Public Law Research Paper No. 796
David L. Markell 
Florida State University College of Law 

 Highways, Hunters, and Section Lines: Tensions between Public Access and Private Rights
2 Great Plains Natural Resources Journal 240 (1997)
Thomas E. Simmons 
University of South Dakota School of Law 

 Towards a Greater East Side: California Political Boundary Law and Southeast Los Angeles County
California Journal of Politics and Policy, 8 (2), 2016
Ian Flannigan Sprague 
Columbia University, Law School, Students 

 The Definitive Guide to Tree Disputes in California
21 Hastings W. Nw. J. of Envtl. L. & Pol'y 113 (2015)
Ellis Raskin 
Angel Law 

 Additionality and Forest Conservation Regulation for Residential Development
Jeffrey Ferris and David A. Newburn 
University of Maryland and University of Maryland - Department of Agricultural & Resource Economics 
Date Posted: April 17, 2016

Protecting People, Protecting Places: What Environmental Litigation Conceals and Reveals About Rurality
Journal of Rural Studies, Forthcoming, UC Davis Legal Studies Research Paper No. 490
Lisa R. Pruitt and Linda Sobczynski 
University of California, Davis - School of Law and Independent 

 Vestiges of Transit: Urban Persistence at a Micro Sale
Leah Brooks and Byron F. Lutz 
McGill University and Federal Reserve Board - Research Division 

 From Today's City to Tomorrow's City: An Empirical Investigation of Urban Land Assembly
Leah Brooks and Byron F. Lutz 
McGill University and Federal Reserve Board - Research Division 

 How Taxis, Peanuts and Assault Rifles Get You a Martini for Dinner: Examining Peanut Quotas and Taxi Medallions in Consideration of Whether a Fifth Amendment Takings Claim is a Red Herring When Eliminating Alcohol License Quota Systems
DePaul Business & Commercial Law Journal, Spring 2015
KE Powell 
Ohio Northern University - Pettit College of Law 

 Climate Exactions
Maryland Law Review, Vol. 75, No. 2, 2016
J. Peter Byrne and Kathryn Zyla 
Georgetown University - Law Center and Georgetown Climate Center 

 The Illusion of Fiscal Illusion in Regulatory Takings
American University Law Review, Vol. 66, No. 1, 2016
Bethany Berger 
University of Connecticut School of Law 

Negotiating Conduct and Compensation Agreements for Coal Seam Gas Operations: Developing the Queensland Regulatory Framework
L Boulle and others, 'Negotiating Conduct and Compensation Agreements for Coal Seam Gas Operations: Developing the Queensland Regulatory Framework' (2014) 17 (1) Australasian Journal of Natural Resources Law and Policy 75-100 
Tina Hunter and Laurence Boulle 
Independent and Independent 

 Urban Forests as Weapons Against Climate Change: Lessons from California's Global Warming Solutions Act
47 Urb. Law. 387
Ellis Raskin 
Angel Law 

 How Land Use Law Impedes Transportation Innovation
David Schleicher 
Yale University - Law School 

Land Use Planning for Flood Risk: A Comparative Case of Adaptive and Precautionary Governance Systems
(2015) 17 (4) Journal of Environmental Policy and Planning 516-534
Justine Bell 

 Lived Bodies, Place, and Phenomenology: Implications for Human Rights and Environmental Justice
Journal of Human Rights and the Environment, Vol. 4, No. 2, 2013
David Seamon 
Kansas State University 


 Billy Joel: The Chronicler of the Suburbanization in New York
32 Touro L. Rev. 111 (2015), Touro Law Center Legal Studies Research Paper Series
Patricia Salkin and Irene Crisci 
Touro College - Jacob D. Fuchsberg Law Center and Touro Law Center 

 Searching for Fair Housing
Boston University Law Review, Forthcoming, U of Chicago, Public Law Working Paper No. 575, Kreisman Working Papers Series in Housing Law and Policy No. 34
Lee Anne Fennell 
University of Chicago - Law School 


 The Texas Property Owner Rule
In Chambers, Summer 2015, at 16.
Craig Estlinbaum 
130th Judicial District Court 

 We the Nomads: Review of Nicole Graham, Lawscape: Property, Environment, Law
‘We, the Nomads: A Review of Lawscape: Property, Environment, Law’ (2011) 7 McGill International Journal of Sustainable Development Law & Policy 233-240., 
Kirsten Anker 
McGill University - Faculty of Law 

 Defining and Closing the Hydraulic Fracturing Governance Gap
Harvard Environmental Law Review, Vol. 41, 2016 (Forthcoming)
Grace Heusner Allison Sloto and Josh Galperin 
Yale University, Law School, Students , Yale University, School of Forestry and Environmental Studies, Students and Yale Law School 


 Federalism, Regulatory Architecture, and the Clean Water Rule: Seeking Consensus on the Waters of the United States
Environmental Law, Vol. 46, 2016, FSU College of Law, Public Law Research Paper No. 800
Erin Ryan 
Florida State University, College of Law 

 Green Home Standards: Information and Incentives
Houston Law Review, Forthcoming, UGA Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2015-15
James Charles Smith 
University of Georgia Law School 

 Natural Baselines for Wildfire Takings Claims
Maryland Law Review, Vol. 75, No. 3, 2016, U Denver Legal Studies Research Paper No. 16-13
Justin R. Pidot 
University of Denver Sturm College of Law 

 What's the TIFF About TIF?: An Incremental Approach to Improving the Perception, Awareness, and Effectiveness of Urban Renewal in Idaho
50 Idaho Law Review 273, 2014
Spencer W. Holm 
Idaho Court of Appeals 

 Valuing Real Options in Real Estate: A Spatial Study of the Option to Redevelop
Henry J. Munneke 
University of Georgia - Department of Insurance, Legal Studies, Real Estate 

 Resetting the Baseline of Ownership: Takings and Investor Expectations After the Bailouts
Maryland Law Review, Vol. 75, No. 722, 2016, Fordham Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2756158
Nestor M. Davidson 
Fordham University School of Law 

 Patents as Commercial Assets in Political, Legal, and Social Context
Tulsa Law Review, Vol. 51, No. 2, pp. 453-468, 2015, George Mason Legal Studies Research Paper No. LS 16-18
Adam Mossoff 
George Mason University School of Law 

Law and Politics in the Constitutional Delineation of Indigenous Property Rights in 1840s New Zealand
Shaunnagh Dorsett and Ian Hunter eds., Law and Politics in British Colonial Thought: Transpositions of Empire (Palgrave, New York, 2010), 249-268
Mark Hickford 

Scholars based at non-U.S. institutions:

 Ownership Rights
J. Sytsma & J. W. Buckwalter (Eds.), A companion to experimental philosophy. Malden, MA: Wiley-Blackwell
Shaylene Nancekivell J. Charles Millar Pauline Summers and Ori Friedman 
University of Waterloo , University of Waterloo , University of Waterloo and University of Waterloo - Department of Psychology 

Sinai Mülkiyet Haklarina İlişkin Kanun Hükmünde Kararnamelerin Anayasa'ya Uygunluğu Sorunu (Constitutionality Issue of Decree Laws Pertaining to Industrial Property Rights)
Legal Hukuk Dergisi, 2016, C. 14, S. 160, P. 1861-1902
Salih Polater 
Independent 

 LA RESPONSABILIDAD SOCIAL DE LA PROPIEDAD (The Social Responsibility of Ownership)
IESE Business School Working Paper No. WP-1132
Antonio Argandoña 
University of Navarra - IESE Business School 
Date Posted: April 28, 2016

 Gains and Losses in Ecosystem Services: Trade-Off and Efficiency Perspectives
Trung Thanh Nguyen 
Leibniz Universität Hannover 


 The Politics of Chinese Land: Partial Reform, Vested Interests and Small Property
Columbia Journal of Asian Law, Vol. 29, No. 1, pp. 70-113, 2016
Shitong Qiao 
University of Hong Kong Faculty of Law 

Smart Urban Development: Visions, Institutions and Mechanisms
Simon Huston 
Royal Agricultural University 

 The Adequacy of the Law in Satisfying Society's Expectations For Major Projects
(2015) 32 EPLJ 182
Brian Preston 
Land and Environment Court of New South Wales 

 Protected Areas in the Courts: An Overview
[2015] 11 Resource Management Theory & Practice 22
Brian Preston 
Land and Environment Court of New South Wales 

 Determining Minimum Compensation for Lost Farmland: A Theory-Based Impact Evaluation of a Land Grab in Sierra Leone
Hansen, Marc Victor, Conteh, Mohamed Sorrie, Shakya, Martina and Loewenstein, Wilhelm, Determining Minimum Compensation for Lost Farmland: A Theory-Based Impact Evaluation of a Land Grab in Sierra Leone. IEE Working Paper 211. Bochum 2016
Marc Victor Hansen Mohamed Sorrie Conteh Martina Shakya and Wilhelm Loewenstein 
Ruhr Universität Bochum - Institute of Development Research and Development Policy , Independent author , Institute of Development Research and Development Policy and Ruhr Universität Bochum - Institute of Development Research and Development Policy 

The Recording and Management of Indigenous Lands and Title: Is Reform Required?
(2015) 24 Australian Property Law Journal 235-255 
Margaret A. Stephenson and Maureen Tehan 
The University of Queensland - T.C. Beirne School of Law and Melbourne Law School 

 A Confucian Theory of Property
Tsinghua China Law Review, Forthcoming
Norman P. Ho 
Peking University School of Transnational Law 

 New Rules on Liability for Inheritance Debts in Poland: Road to a Single European Law?
European Review of Private Law 2/2016
Mariusz Załucki 
Andrzej Frycz Modrzewski Kracow University 

 What Do the Decisions of the European Court of Human Rights Tell About Property Rights Across Europe?
David Gomtsyan and Suren Gomtsian 
University of Turin and Tilburg Law School 

 Ruminations on the Problems with the Resource Management Act 1991
New Zealand Law Journal, March 2016
Sir Geoffrey Palmer QC 
Victoria University of Wellington - Faculty of Law 

 The Concept of 'Indirect Expropriation', its Appearance in the International System and its Effects in the Regulatory Activity of Governments
Civlizar Ciencias Sociales y Humanas - Unievrsidad Sergio Arboleda Volumen 11 No. 21
Enrique Prieto Rios and Courtenay Barklem 
Universidad de los Andes and University of Manchester 

 The Residency Discount for Rents in Germany and the Tenancy Law Reform Act 2001: Evidence from Quantile Regressions
ZEW - Centre for European Economic Research Discussion Paper No. 16-012
Bernd Fitzenberger and Benjamin Fuchs 
Humboldt University of Berlin - School of Business and Economics and University of Hohenheim 

 Industrial Displacements and Human Rights
LAP LAMBERT Academic Publishing, 2012, ISBN-10: 3848480166 ISBN-13: 978-3848480166 
Ratnakar Mishra Sujata Mangaraj and Rabi N. Subudhi 
National Institute of Science & Technology , Regional College of Management, Bhubaneswar and KIIT University - School of Management 

Framing and Reframing the Agōn Contesting Narratives and Counternarratives on Māori Property Rights and Political Constitutionalism, 1840-1861
Saliha Belmessous ed., Native Claims: Indigenous Law against Empire, 1500-1920 (Oxford University Press, Oxford and New York, 2011)
Mark Hickford 
Victoria University of Wellington - Faculty of Law 

 Property Division: Lessons from New Zealand
In Panagiotis I Kanellopoulos, Elini Nina-Pazarzi and Cornelia Delouka-Inglessi (eds) Essays in Honor of Penelope Agallopoulou (Athens, Ant N Sakkoulas, 2011) pp 129-151.
Bill Atkin 
Victoria University of Wellington - Faculty of Law 

May 1, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Why do we give away housing vouchers with a lottery?

This episode of Planet Money provides a surprisingly succinct and detailed introduction to the history of housing policy.  Worth a listen!

 

April 30, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Clinical Director sought for new UCLA Food Law and Policy Clinic

From Michael T. Roberts:

I am happy to report that thanks to funding we have recently received, the UCLA Resnick Program is launching a Food Law and Policy Clinic during the 2016-17 academic year.  The clinic's programmatic mission will be to facilitate sufficient access to socially, economically, and environmentally sustainable food and to improve food environments particularly for low income populations and marginalized communities.  We are excited about this development and hope that it serves as another important benchmark in the developing field of food law and policy.

To launch the clinic, we are seeking a Clinical Director who will be expected to teach, develop, and manage the clinic.  The Clinic Director will also work with faculty and administrators to develop and implement other food law and policy related experiential opportunities for students. 

The recruitment period starts today.  Applications need to be made no later than May 19, 2016.  The start date will be July 1, 2016.

The job announcement and details can be accessed at https://recruit.apo.ucla.edu/apply/JPF02172.  Details about our program can be found at: http://www.law.ucla.edu/centers/social-policy/resnick-program-for-food-law-and-policy/

April 28, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

140,448 people "like" my new book on Facebook: Really?!

As I blogged about last week, Robin Craig and I have a new book of essays from 12 authors responding to the IPCC and considering the role of law in climate policy generally.  It's a great book of essays (selling for a very reasonable $35.95...thank you ELI Press!).  While I consider the book a blockbuster of legal insight, frankly, I didn't imagine the book would sell many copies.  But then I was checking my Facebook account earlier this week and an ad for the book appeared beside my "news feed" in Facebook.  I presume the ad was placed because I had looked to see if the book was available on Amazon (it is) and I am guessing that browser history caused Amazon to place this ad.  The part that caught my eye, though, was the text below the ad:  "140,448 people like this." I laughed, at first, and then for a fleeting second imagined that it might be true:  It just might be that 140,000 people have decided to "like" an academic book about climate policy.  Then reason weighed in:  No way.

But what to make of this?  Is that a purely invented number?  Did "bots" simply like the book?  If so, to what end?  Does anyone out there have experience with this?  I presume the number isn't real...I just wonder how it came to be and, perhaps equally intriguing to its presumed falsity, how whoever placed the ad can get away with a false advertisement of "likes."

 

Facebook likes - cropped

April 28, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Pruitt & Sobszynski on What Environmental Litigation Conceals and Reveals about Rurality

Interesting new article by Lisa R. Pruitt (UC Davis) and Linda Sobszynski (Independent) that relates to rural land use issues.  The paper is, "Protecting People, Protecting Places: What Environmental Litigation Conceals and Reveals About Rurality."  Here is the abstract:

 

This paper considers how conservation litigation seeking to protect wilderness from degradation can overlook those living nearby or within it, even though the degradation also threatens residents. We use as a case study the controversial siting of a concentrated animal feeding operation (CAFO) in a chronically impoverished, all-white community in the remote Arkansas Ozarks of the United States. Because the CAFO is at the cusp of federally protected wilderness, it attracted the attention of national conservation interests, who sued seeking the CAFO’s closure.

These events provide a basis for illustrating how and theorizing why the community was disserved by both its rurality and its whiteness. We suggest that widely held rural associations with the pastoral and bucolic — imaginaries that are at least implicitly white — may have blinded those strategizing the litigation to the place’s deep and entrenched poverty and therefore to the residents’ vulnerability. Alternatively, the conservation-oriented plaintiffs and attorneys may have viewed these poor white residents as transgressing wilderness — as having trashed pristine nature by their very presence — and thus as unworthy of advocacy. Either way, the plaintiffs did not bolster their conservationist claims with environmental justice advocacy, presumably because of the absence of a clear optical trigger for the latter.

Finally, we consider these events through three lenses typically associated with environmental law: conservationist, economic, and social (environmental justice). Finding each of these lacking, we illustrate how the robust and multi-dimensional concept of rurality can synthesize these individual frames while surfacing voices and issues not otherwise heard. Turning a rural lens on these events also reveals socio-spatial obstacles to environmental justice, explaining, for example, why multi-generational residents are unwilling to assert their legal rights. The paper is thus essentially a meta-narrative of rurality.

April 27, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

How Cities Will Save the World: Urban Innovation in the Face of Population Flows, Climate Change and Economic Inequality (Brescia & Marshall, eds.)

Ray Brescia (Albany) and John Travis Marshall (Georgia State) have just published a collection of essays they co-edited, How Cities Will Save the World:  Urban Innovation in the Face of Population Flows, Climate Change and Economic Inequality (Routledge).  More about the book:


Cities are frequently viewed as passive participants to state and national efforts to solve the toughest urban problems. But the evidence suggests otherwise. Cities are actively devising innovative policy solutions and they have the potential to do even more. In this volume, the authors examine current threats to communities across the U.S. and the globe. They draw on first-hand experience with, and accounts of, the crises already precipitated by climate change, population shifts, and economic inequality. This volume is distinguished, however, by its central objective of traveling beyond a description of problems and a discussion of their serious implications. Each of the thirteen chapters frame specific recommendations and guidance on the range of core capacities and interventions that 21st Century cities would be prudent to consider in mapping their immediate and future responses to these critical problems. How Cities Will Save the World brings together authors with frontline experience in the fields of city redevelopment, urban infrastructure, healthcare, planning, immigration, historic preservation, and local government administration. They not only offer their ground level view of threats caused by climate change, population shifts, and economic inequality, but they provide solution-driven narratives identifying promising innovations to help cities tackle this century’s greatest adversities.

 

 

IMG_3485

April 27, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

The effect of California's dissolution of redevelopment agencies on the State's affordable housing developers

survey released in December, 2015 by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco of affordable housing developers provides significant insight on the effects of the loss of State redevelopment agencies on affordable housing developers.  The responses, from 71 development organizations across the state, found the following:  

83 percent of respondents must pursue more funding sources than they did under RDA, 74 percent have projects that have been postponed or jeopardized, 80 percent of the projects have been negatively impacted by rising cost of lands and 61 percent  have had to reduce staff because of funding reductions. Only 26 percent say their jurisdictions have developed post-RDA regulatory reforms for affordable housing.

Hat tip to CD&PR.

 

 

April 26, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Schleicher on reducing the power of NIMBYs and cutting housing costs

David Schleicher (Yale) has a new article,"Terms of enlargement: Clever reforms can reduce the power of NIMBYs and cut housing costs," in The Economist's April 16, 2016 print edition, which is also available here.  The first few paragraphs:

 

THE world’s great cities are engines of wealth creation. Places like London and San Francisco account for a disproportionate share of economic output. They are the combustion chambers in which ideas and capital are combined to generate new riches.

To an alarming extent, such cities are also playgrounds for the rich—and only the rich. The soaring cost of housing in these places pushes those of more modest means away, toward spots where homes are cheaper but opportunity is more limited. That pressure has serious consequences. A recent paper* reckons that over the past 50 years this dispersing effect left American output 13.5% below the level it would otherwise have reached. Poor Americans living in rich cities survive longer than their counterparts in poor ones. Finding more effective ways to reduce housing costs would thus not only save money but prolong lives.

Economics is all about supply and demand, and high housing costs are the product of too little of the former in the face of lots of the latter. Strict planning rules in pricey cities make building new homes a nightmare for developers. In London, for example, they face myriad rules about what they can build where, including one that states that nothing should impede the view of the dome of St Paul’s Cathedral from a gap in a hedge ten miles away. By the same token, a thicket of environmental rules in California has given NIMBYs (short for “not in my backyard”) a host of ways to stall, shrink or stop new projects.

April 26, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Monday, April 25, 2016

Zoning’s Centennial, Part 16: Fracking as an Industrial Use under Zoning: A Series by John R. Nolon

Part 16

Zoning’s Centennial

John R. Nolon

Distinguished Professor of Law, Pace Law School

Counsel, Land Use Law Center

Fracking as an Industrial Use under Zoning

 

Is there currently a more controversial land use, environmental, and economic issue in America than fracking? Just listen to the ongoing debates:

“Fracking is great!”

“No, it’s terrible!”

“It will mitigate climate change.”

“No, it won’t.”

“Fracking cannot be made safe, even through proper regulation.”

“Yes, it can.”

“Even if it can be done safely, don’t go there, because it will take our focus away from promoting renewables.” 

To quote Kurt Vonnegut: “So it goes.”

Meanwhile, fracking is happening and local governments are subjected to many of its associated risks. They either need to act, or know - clearly and convincingly - why they should not. The federal government has stopped far short of comprehensive regulation of fracking; the states’ regulations range from fair to poor, sometimes preempting local regulation but most often sharing regulatory authority over land use impacts. 

The stakes couldn’t be higher. “Think about it,” as the fracking industry advertisement says; does the federal or state government, as part of their fracking regulations, control  any of these local impacts?

  • Pressures on housing supply and costs;
  • Radical changes in community character;
  • Loss of habitat and species;
  • Deterrent effects on local growth;
  • Impacts on recreational resources;
  • Effects on agricultural land and operations;
  • Causation of soil erosion and sedimentation;
  • Creation of visual blight; or
  • Increases in the cost of public health services.

The Land Use Law Center and our partners at the Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies have examined dozens of local fracking regulations and identified three dozen local impacts and risks found in the purposes section of their laws. With respect to a few of these impacts, federal or state regulations may require some level of mitigation, but these fall far short of controlling highly specific impacts felt in existing neighborhoods and on local environmental assets. Federal and state regulations are indifferent, as well, to the land use objectives of the comprehensive plan in any given community.

This indifference and the preemption of local control of fracking in some states are hard to understand. Why should this be more complicated than regulating any other intense industrial use? (Cement manufacturing comes to mind.) Why don’t we allow it in industrial zones and subject it to a number of conditions as a specially permitted use? If imposing conditions can’t fully protect local interests, why can’t the fracking application be denied? Why should this one impactful land use be treated differently?

Consider that zoning is one of several responsibilities that local governments are delegated by their state legislatures. Think of these responsibilities as a three-legged stool. First, zoning determines how property is used and developed, and therefore dictates how valuable it will be. Second, localities have the power to impose property taxes on the assessed value of the land that they regulate. Third, municipalities are expected to use property tax revenues to fund municipal operations, provide capital infrastructure, and carry on the business of local government. 

Given the complexity, comprehensiveness, and utility of these linked powers and duties, the judiciary is rightfully cautious about implying that state statutes that regulate fracking are intended by the legislature to inhibit local prerogatives. The importance of local land use regulation and the intertwined functions of local governments raise a presumption against preemption, in my view, that must be overcome to convince most state judges that their legislatures intended to preempt local zoning. Judges are inclined to say that if the state legislature passed statutes integrating zoning, taxation, and expenditure, why would they, in the case of fracking, remove one leg of the stool?

What has happened in Pennsylvania is instructive. Under previous state oil and gas law, the state courts had determined that local governments could regulate but not prevent fracking under local zoning. Following these judicial decisions, the state legislature adopted Act 13, which preempted local control. The Act required local governments to include fracking as a permitted use in all zoning districts. This Act was invalidated by Robison v. Commonwealth, which held that it failed to protect neighboring property owners from harm and created irrational land use classifications. The power of municipalities to adopt comprehensive plans, to separate land uses through zoning, and the derivative rights of land owners, in the Robinson court’s view, trumped state oil and gas legislation that, on its face, preempted local regulation.

The court explained that zoning power was but “an extension of the concept of public nuisance which protects owners from activities that interfere with use and enjoyment of their property,” citing the seminal Village of Euclid v. Ambler Realty case. Essentially, the Act required municipalities to create zoning incompatible with their comprehensive plans; if mining and gas operations were to be included in all zones, as the Act required, zoning ordinances would inherently not comport with their comprehensive plans Thus, the court found, the state’s interest in regulating fracking processes sits in direct conflict with local zoning interests. 

For more information, see John R. Nolon & Steven E. Gavin, Hydrofracking: State Preemption, Local Power, and Cooperative Governance, 63 Case W. Res. L. Rev. 995 (2013); John R. Nolon & Victoria Polidoro, Hydrofracking: Disturbances Both Geological and Political: Who Decides?, 44 Urb. Law. 507 (2012).  See also, Pace / Yale Land Use Collaborative launches beta version of online fracking governance tool for local governments.  See also, Grace Heusner, Allison Sloto & Joshua Ulan Galperin, Defining and Closing the Hydraulic Fracturing Governance Gap, Harvard Envtl. L. Rev. (forthcoming 2016). http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=2759847

 

Links to previous posts in the Zoning Centennial’s Series:

Part 1: The Need for Public Regulation of Land Use – The First Comprehensive Zoning Law

Part 2:  The Delegation of Legal Authority To Adopt Zoning

Part 3: Zoning Was Contagious, But Was It Constitutional?

Part 4: The Unintended Consequences of Euclidean Zoning

Part 5: The Most Appropriate Use of the Land

Part 6: The Surprising Origins of Smart Growth

Part 7: The Advent of Local Environmental Law

Part 8: Regionalism and ‘Wistful Hoping’

Part 9: Mixed Signals: Exclusionary Zoning and Fairness

Part 10: The Emergence of the Law of Sustainable Development

Part 11: Designing Density

Part 12: Green Infrastructure

Part 12B: Land Use and Energy Conservation

Part 14: Transit Oriented Development

Part 15: Zoning in Solar and Clean Energy

April 25, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Friday, April 22, 2016

Happy Earth Day!

Happy Earth Day!  

I thought about posting a serious discussion of land use and environmental policy, but then I just received this picture of my daughter planting a marigold as a natural bug deterrent in her pre-school's garden, and I thought that kind of summed up everything better than a long blog post could.  

Here she is...

IMG_4135

 

April 22, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

New California firm-based sustainability law update

Allen Matkins, a well-respected California real estate law firm, has just started a "Sustainable Development Update" newsletter.  Looks like it could become a useful source for what's happening on the ground, at least in California.  Their first edition is below with a subscribe button.

[Note:  I have no connection with Allen Matkins, though I do know several attorneys that used to work there.]

 

 

Subscribe to our new Sustainable Development Update newsletter. 

 

April 20, 2016 | Problem viewing? Click to view online.

 
 
 

Dear Stephen,

Please accept our invitation to subscribe toSustainable Development Update.

This free weekly publication is designed for readers who are trying to stay abreast of sustainability issues (in California and throughout the country) but do not have the time to sort through the numerous articles published each week on these topics.

Every edition of Sustainable Development Updateincludes the following:

  • 5-10 of the most important articles published each week
  • Links to important studies, research, or guidelines


We hope you find this publication valuable. Please let us know if you would like to continue receiving this newsletter by clicking on the "Subscribe" box below.

 
 
 

Best regards,

Patrick Perry and Elizabeth Clark
Allen Matkins

FOCUS

 
 

Green Buildings are good for the environment, occupants, and the bottom line

CBRE - April 14

Green buildings are good for the environment—that is well known. But what benefits do they offer the people who inhabit them? A recent report from the World Green Building Council tackles that matter head-on, looking at the impact of environmentally friendly construction on user productivity and well-being in the retail sector. One notable example, cited both by the Council’s report, is a major global retailer that explored the effect of natural light versus artificial light on sales. Using a concept store in which one half of the store was naturally lit and the other half was lit artificially, the company found that sales per square foot were significantly higher in the naturally lit half.

 
 

NEWS

 
 

The top tech to cut energy costs and emissions? You may be surprised

GreenBiz - March 4
 

There are many ways to reduce a company’s carbon footprint and energy spending, but you may be surprised at the most popular. Based on revenue gains last year in the various advanced energy segments — including solar, wind, gas turbines, biofuels, energy storage, and building efficiency technologies — the last grabbed the biggest share of revenues, at $63.6 billion globally and $52.8 billion in the U.S., according to the Advanced Energy Economy group. In addition, solar revenues jumped 21 percent year over year to $22.6 billion - and tripled over the past five years. SunPower Vice President Tom Starrs, head of market development and policy, said he sees three changing dynamics in the solar market propelling big uptake by companies, residents and utilities, including that utility scale power plants are finally gaining acceptance in the utility sector overall, with solar becoming a significant piece of many utilities' electricity generation.

 
 
 

Fresh facelift for Ford facilities

Gizmag - April 13

A major redevelopment of Ford's Dearborn campus in Michigan is set to see it become greener, more high-tech, and better at fostering innovation. The Ford Research and Engineering Center Campus will be developed into a new product campus, designed to accommodate 24,000 people, with 4.5 million square feet of floor space. Employees will be able to get around using autonomous vehicles, on-demand shuttles and e-bikes, or via the walking trails, bike paths and covered walkways that will link the campus. The designs draw upon the WELL Building Standard, which is aimed at improving the wellbeing of employees based on air, water, nourishment, light, fitness, comfort, and mental and emotional health.

 
 
 

Wastewater creates energy, products, and more

KQED - April 13
 

Historically, we’ve treated wastewater as something to be treated and dumped – a liability and not a resource. But Sebastien Tilmans may change our minds about that. Tilmans is the director of operations at the William and Cloy Codiga Resource Recovery Center at Stanford University. The center is working to accelerate the path to commercialization of wastewater technologies. California’s drought has helped to highlight growing interest in wastewater reuse to provide water resources for drinking water and non-potable uses such as flushing toilets and irrigation.

 
 
 

L.A. City Council adopts rules to ease health hazards in polluted neighborhoods

Los Angeles Times - April 13

Addressing decades of complaints from some of the city's most neglected corners, Los Angeles officials last week launched a groundbreaking effort to reduce health risks from industrial and traffic pollution that have plagued neighborhoods from the harbor area to the San Fernando Valley. The City Council unanimously approved special land-use restrictions for some of L.A.'s most polluted neighborhoods and adopted citywide requirements for higher-rated air filters in new developments near freeways. The measures mark a significant effort to bring environmental justice to toxic hot spots where residents of largely low-income communities have for years fought for greater health protections from a heavy concentration of junk yards, auto body shops, oil refineries, factories, freeways and other pollution sources.

 
 
 

Homeless veterans move into The Six in Los Angeles

Affordable Housing Finance - April 15

The Six in Los Angeles, which had its grand opening this month, is Skid Row Housing Trust’s first development with permanent supportive housing specifically for veterans. The Six provides 52 units of permanent supportive housing for formerly homeless veterans and disabled individuals. With solar thermal panels, Energy Star appliances, water-efficient fixtures, and environmentally friendly building materials, The Six has also received LEED Platinum certification from the U.S. Green Building Council.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

EDITORS

 
Patrick A. Perry
 
Patrick A. Perry
Partner
Los Angeles

(213) 955-5504

E-mail me

 
Elizabeth Clark
 
Elizabeth Clark
Senior Counsel
San Francisco

(415) 273-7427

E-mail me

 
 
 
 
 
 

UPCOMING EVENTS

 
 
 
 

A New Transbay Transit Crossing
SPUR
April 20, 2016
Oakland, California

Water Sustainability in Silicon Valley
SPUR
May 4, 2016
San Jose, California

Prepare for California’s Aggressive Energy Goals, Today: A Panel on Zero Energy Buildings
ULI San Francisco
May 5, 2016
San Francisco, California

The ULI Panel on Zero Energy Buildings is being presented by the ULI San Francisco Sustainability Subcommittee on Zero Energy Buildings, which is comprised of:
Elizabeth Clark, Allen Matkins
Joshua Kagan, CleanFund Commercial PACE Capital Inc.
Christian Park, Stok
Dave Rhoads, Google
We hope you can join us for this valuable presentation.
 
 
 
 
 
 

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ABOUT ALLEN MATKINS

 
 
 
 
 

Allen Matkins, founded in 1977, is a California-based law firm with approximately 200 attorneys in four major metropolitan areas of California: Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego and San Francisco. The firm's areas of focus include real estate, construction, land use, environmental and natural resources; sustainability; corporate and securities, real estate and commercial finance, bankruptcy, restructurings and creditors' rights, joint ventures and tax; labor, employment and OSHA; and trials, litigation, risk management and alternative dispute resolution in all of these areas.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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© 2016 Allen Matkins Leck Gamble Mallory & Natsis LLP. All rights reserved. This email is intended for general information purposes only and should not be construed as legal advice or legal opinions on any specific facts or circumstances. This email was sent by: Allen Matkins Leck Gamble Mallory & Natsis LLP, 51‌5 S. Figueroa Street, 9th Floor, Los Angeles, California 90‌071. To stop receiving this publication, click on the "unsubscribe" button.

 

April 22, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Sept 30-Oct 1: 2016 Society of American Law Teachers (SALT) Teaching Conference

Please see the attached call for panels and papers for the 2016 Society of American Law Teachers (SALT) Teaching Conference!  Proposals are due by June 15, 2016.  We look forward to seeing you in Chicago this fall!

Friday and Saturday, September 30 and October 1, 2016 

The John Marshall Law School, Chicago, Illinois

SALT - Society of American Law Teachers

Download SALT - 2016 CFP

Posted for Sara Rankin.  Feel free to contact her with questions.

 

April 22, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

SAVE THE DATE: Central States Law Schools Scholarship Conference Sept 23-24

SAVE THE DATE: Central States Law Schools Scholarship Conference

The Central States Law Schools Association 2016 Scholarship Conference will be held on Friday, September 23 and Saturday, September 24 at the University of North Dakota School of Law in Grand Forks, ND.  

CSLSA is an organization of law schools dedicated to providing a forum for conversation and collaboration among law school academics. The CSLSA Annual Conference is an opportunity for legal scholars, especially more junior scholars, to present working papers or finished articles on any law-related topic in a relaxed and supportive setting where junior and senior scholars from various disciplines are available to comment. More mature scholars have an opportunity to test new ideas in a less formal setting than is generally available for their work. Scholars from member and nonmember schools are invited to attend. 

Registration will formally open in July. Hotel rooms are already available, and more information about the CSLSA conference can be found on our website at www.cslsa.us.

Posting for Chris Odinet.  Feel free to contact him if you have questions.

April 22, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Thursday, April 21, 2016

New from ELI Press: Contemporary Issues in Climate Change Law and Policy: Essays Inspired by the IPCC (Craig & Miller, eds.)

I am delighted to announce that, just in time Earth Day this year, is the publication of a new book of essays, Contemporary Issues in Climate Change Law and Policy:  Essays Inspired by the IPCC, which I co-edited with Robin Craig (Utah).  The essays resulted from the second meeting of the Environmental Law Collaborative in Jackson, Wyoming, in August, 2014, which also resulted in a series of shorter essays, A Response to the IPCC Fifth Assessment, freely available here and published in the Environmental Law Reporter.  

The collection has a tremendous range that results from the varied interests and talents of the contributors, which included, in order of publication in the book:  Robin Kundis Craig;   John C. Dernbach; Keith Hirokawa; Jonathan Rosenbloom; Jessica Owley; David Takacs; Stephen R. Miller; Sarah J. Adams-Schoen; Cinnamon Pinon Carlarne; Katrina Fischer Kuh; Shannon Roesler; and Inara Scott.

Here is the book blurb and review:

About

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s most recent set of reports, generally referred to collectively as the Fifth Assessment Report, present significant data and findings about climate change. But what role does law play in addressing and responding to these findings? This book, the second by the Environmental Law Collaborative, an affiliation of environmental law professors, focuses on the relationship between law and the Fifth Assessment Report in hopes of bridging this gap. This book’s chapters are illustrative of the overwhelming number of legal issues that climate change creates. Some of the contributions remain directly tied to the text of the IPCC’s reports, while others focus on climate change more generally. Together, this volume contributes to a constructive and helpful discussion about how to address the climate change challenge.

Book Reviews

The Environmental Law Collaborative has once again produced a volume of contributions on a theme of vital importance. Contemporary Issues in Climate Change Law and Policy uses the IPCC’s latest round of reports as the lens through which to assess the progress and trajectory of law for climate change mitigation and adaptation. The result is a collection of chapters that are remarkably diverse in coverage yet coherent and intent in focus. Topics span the waterfront from national security and water infrastructure to religious perspectives and local community action. Each chapter stands on its own as thorough, insightful, and engaging, as well as a bountiful resource of law and policy update and analysis. Unified in the book through its core theme, the authors provide much to be gained for everyone from a newcomer to the rough and tumble of climate policy to those already steeped in its discourse.

—J.B. Ruhl, David Daniels Allen Distinguished Chair of Law, Vanderbilt University Law School

Cover

 

 

April 21, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Schleicher on how land use law impedes transportation innovation

Somewhat apropos of my rant earlier this week about the failure of the Bay Area to take advantage of its transportation infrastructure, David Schleicher (Yale) has a new paper out, "How Land Use Law Impedes Transportation Innovation."  Here is the abstract:

A certain breed of economists and techno-futurists regularly point to the potential for innovation in the transportation sector to spur economic growth. Such predictions, however, often fail to discuss why transportation innovation in the past was so central to economic changes. Innovations like the automobile or the elevator did not make it (much) easier to travel between and among existing homes, stores and offices. After all, existing developments had been built around previous technologies for moving people around, whether it was the streetcar suburb or the walk-up apartment building. Instead, most of the gains from new transportation technologies come from being able to move our homes, offices, and stores into more pleasing and efficient patterns. That is, to get the benefits from transportation technologies, we must change land use patterns.

But land uses in our cities and metropolitan areas do not simply follow changes market demand or technological progress. Laws and regulations from zoning codes to subdivision requirements to historic preservation limit the forms, densities, and uses of buildings. In order to understand the potential transportation technologies have to produce economic growth, we have to consider both how they will affect optimal land uses and whether the changes they suggest will be allowed and encouraged by local and state land use regulators. This Chapter will assess how well modern land use law has or might accommodate three major recent or soon-to-arrive transportation innovations: (1) Global Positioning Systems (GPS), mobile mapping, and real-time traffic information services (e.g. Google Maps, Apple Maps, TomTom, Garmin, and Waze); (2) e-hailing apps for taxis, shared rides, and shuttles (like Uber, Lyft, and their competitors); and (3) still-developing self-driving autonomous cars. 

These technological innovations should allow two types of changes to land use patterns. First, they allow “distributed density” within urban areas. Each technology should allow for greater overall density in cities without requiring as much extreme density. These technologies permit nodes of extreme density of uses (e.g., stores along a high street, or tall apartments within a quarter of a mile of train station) to spread a bit further without losing the gains of agglomeration. Second, the innovations will allow development on the edges of metropolitan areas, as they – particularly GPS and potentially autonomous cars – reduce the costs of travelling substantial distances, both in time and in effort.

Land use law does not equally permit these types of development. While building on the edge of metropolitan areas is generally easy in the United States, land use law and politics is particularly ill-equipped to produce distributed density. Its deep procedural rules and the multiple ways current residents can block new construction make incremental housing growth – building the “missing middle” of the U.S. housing market – particularly difficult. The extreme separation of uses common in zoning in the U.S. makes distributing retail or commercial development difficult as well. Unless zoning procedure and policy is reformed, many of the gains from these technologies will not be realized. Further, by failing to accommodate distributed density, cities will bias how technologists develop products, reducing the potential for economic growth. The Chapter concludes with some thoughts on how land use procedure and policy could be reformed and how transportation technologists might play a role.

April 21, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (0)

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

A "modest proposal" for solving the Bay Area's housing problems

The endless stream of articles about housing pressures in the Bay Area may have reached a zenith in this Sunday's NY Times' article, "In Cramped and Costly Bay Area, Cries to Build, Baby, Build."  Sadly, the story focuses on a self-described "anarchist" who now fights NIMBYs and who (sigh) seems to think that the City of San Francisco--a tiny 7 x 7 mile enclave in the larger Bay Area--can somehow resolve the housing crisis for the region.  

But it got me thinking, again, about the Bay Area.  One thing that people seldom mention in any of these stories about housing there is how underbuilt the areas around BART stations are.  In far too many locations, the BART station is built right next to a superstore parking lot, or some other land use that does not take advantage of BART's immensely expensive transit infrastructure.  So here is my "modest proposal" for the Bay Area:  build 5,000 units of housing around each BART station at a higher density of your choice...say, Paris or even downtown San Francisco.  By my count, there are approximately 30 stations where dense, transit villages could be built.  With 5,000 units at 30 stations, we would be talking 150,000 units, sufficient to house approximately 380,000 persons by current household size (2.54 persons) standards--that would be connected by rail to the entire Bay Area.  

Like most western cities, the Bay Area is far underbuilt for the number of people that want to move west.  That's not the Bay Area's fault, but not properly utilizing the space around the BART stations does fall at the feet of the Bay Area's local governments.

Of course, here is why this is a "modest proposal" in the Swiftian sense; this proposal would almost certainly require the use of eminent domain, the "third rail" of land use policy.  As such, a proposal like this is probably politically dead before it could ever really get going:  the libertarians would call in PLF and talk about how it was tantamount to shredding the Constitution; the NIMBYs would hire someone to challenge the CEQA review; and it would be one enormous, litigious mess.

Or would it?  If you were going to house 380,000 people in the Bay Area with one simple plan, where else would you put them?  Is land use law in the U.S. so broken that a proposal that is so intuitively obvious never is mentioned, and instead the coverage of the issue resorts to an anarchist whose group goes by the acronym "BARF"?

 

BART Map

April 19, 2016 | Permalink | Comments (1)