Grant Glovin Sabin Center Summer Intern Last week, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released a report, “Climate Change in the U.S. – Benefits of Global Action,” detailing the findings of the EPA’s Climate Change Impacts and Risk Analysis (CIRA) study, a peer reviewed project that seeks to assess climate change risk at a regional and […]

Jessica Wentz Associate Director and Postdoctoral Fellow Climate change and its effects on temperature, precipitation, storm patterns, sea level rise, and other environmental processes have important implications for the construction, maintenance, and operation of buildings and infrastructure. Recognizing this, the Obama Administration has issued several executive orders directing federal agencies to prepare for the impacts […]

By Michael B. Gerrard This morning the Hague District Court issued its decision in a lawsuit brought by the Urgenda Foundation against the State of the Netherlands. The court ordered the Dutch state to limit annual greenhouse gas emissions from the country to 25% below 1990 levels by 2020. The government had pledged a 17% reduction, but […]

A recently passed Wyoming law now criminalizes certain kinds of data collection: specifically, unauthorized collection of natural resource data. The new Wyoming Senate Enrolled Act No. 61 outlaws the collection of “resource data”[1] on any “open land” – private, state, or even (under some interpretations) federal land – if the collector does not have landowner […]

By Michael B. Gerrard The remarkable Encyclical Letter issued last week by Pope Francis could be read as a primer on the importance and idealized operation of many of our environmental laws. The headings below are mine; the text is from the Vatican.​ National Environmental Policy Act ​183. Environmental impact assessment should not come after the drawing up […]

Jessica Wentz Associate Director and Postdoctoral Fellow Saturday, June 20 is World Refugee Day – an occasion for recognizing the plight of millions of people who have been forced to leave their homes due to conflict, persecution, natural disasters, and other circumstances beyond their control. The United Nations Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and other civil society […]

Dane Warren Sabin Center Summer Intern & Rising 2L at Columbia Law School On Wednesday, June 10, two Democratic Senators (Sheldon Whitehouse of Rhode Island and Brian Schatz of Hawaii) introduced a bill that would impose a carbon tax of $45 per ton of carbon emissions. For other greenhouse gases, the bill imposes a carbon dioxide […]

Joanna Zhou On 26 May 2015, eight students from Columbia University attended “Make it Work: Paris Climat 2015” – an innovative simulation of international climate change negotiations. The simulation was hosted and organized by Sciences Po and held in Nanterre, Paris over six days. It was attended by over 200 students representing 41 delegations, and included […]

The Sabin Center has published a student paper by Mark Bond* which examines the legal and practical consequences of regulating greenhouse gas emissions as hazardous air pollutants under §112 of the Clean Air Act. To download the full paper, click here. This paper poses three questions: 1) Can greenhouse gases be regulated under §112 of […]

Jennifer M. Klein, Esq. Associate Director & Fellow A group of Belgian citizens initiated a lawsuit in April seeking to compel their government to take aggressive action against climate change. The group, Klimaatzaak, filed a summons in the court of first instance in Brussels, alleging that the federal and regional governments in Belgium have unlawfully […]

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