Thursday, August 26, 2010

Victory for GGU's EJ Clinic

From Helen Kang at Golden Gate University's Environmental Law & Justice Clinic:

The Environmental Law and Justice Clinic scored another victory for communities disproportionately impacted by pollution.  The clinic's participation before the California Public Utilities Commission significantly contributed to the denial of a utility's request to build a new, 600 mw natural gas-fired power plant in an area that is already home to 14 fossil fuel power plants. GGU students' exceptional legal research and writing enabled the clinic to demonstrate that the utility's territory currently has enormous excess capacity to generate power even during high energy need periods. The commission, however, gave the go ahead for a different natural gas-fired unit in the same area. The Clinic has been working with clients to oppose natural gas-fired plants like these to push renewable energy generation in California. Even natural gas-fired plants have the potential to crowd out new renewable projects, and we have studies showing that energy storage from renewable sources of energy is commercially viable. With our federal government still unable to do anything significant to combat climate change, many of our clients are finding that local action to promote renewables is the way to go.

Helen does fantastic work with her students and I am proud to try to follow in her footsteps in the EJ realm.

Jamie Baker Roskie

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