Today the Sabin Center is publishing Heat in US Prisons and Jails: Corrections and the Challenge of Climate Change. This groundbreaking paper, written by visiting scholar Daniel Holt, addresses two important but largely neglected questions: How will increased temperatures and heat waves caused by climate change affect prisons, jails, and their staff and inmate populations? […]

The federal Freedom of Information Act (“FOIA”) and state open record law equivalents are designed to promote government transparency by allowing citizens to request copies of administrative records. Increasingly, they are also used to obtain otherwise private documents from government or public university scientists. FOIA laws can expose misconduct,[1] but invasive FOIA requests can also […]

As governments turn a blind eye to the accumulating risks of climate change, do they expose themselves to potential legal liability? A new working paper by former Sabin Center fellow Jennifer Klein explores three possible legal claims against state and local governments for their failure to prepare for climate change. The paper addresses potential claims […]

By Nikita Perumal and Jessica Wentz A foundational component of sustainable development is the principle of inter-generational equity: that we should meet the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. On August 12, a group of twenty-one youths invoked this principle in a lawsuit filed against […]

By Anna LoPresti, Summer Intern On July 29th, the Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) proposed an amendment to the African Elephant Rule under section 4(d) of the Endangered Species Act, which would enforce stricter regulations on the United States ivory trade. If finalized, the rule would prohibit sale or offer for sale of ivory and […]

Today, the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law is releasing a set of model protocols for assessing the impacts of climate change on the built environment under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and state equivalents. The protocols are intended for use in environmental reviews of proposed buildings and infrastructure (we plan to initiate a […]

The Sabin Center for Climate Change Law has updated the Climate Regulation Tracker on our website. The Climate Regulation Tracker is a uniquely comprehensive resource, compiling in one place and providing links to the federal government’s climate change-related rules and regulations. Over the course of the summer, Columbia University undergrad and Sabin Center intern Anna […]

by Michael Burger Last week I traveled to Vientiane, Laos, to give a presentation at the National Workshop on Disaster and Climate Change Law. The workshop, convened by the United Nations Development Program (UNDP), the International Federation of Red Cross & Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) Disaster Law Program, and the government of Laos, is one […]

Grant Glovin, Sabin Center Summer Intern Hillary Clinton’s climate change plan, released last week, centers on two goals: installing 500 million solar panels by 2021, and, relatedly, adding enough electric generation capacity from renewable sources to supply all residential electricity needs. The plan appears ambitious: the solar power expansion alone would represent a sevenfold increase […]

By Michael Greenberg, Sabin Center Summer Intern Pope Francis’ June 18 encyclical Laudato Si’, On Care for Our Common Home includes a section about the economics of carbon mitigation. Although a small part of the encyclical—one paragraph out of 246—the pope’s economic prescription received extensive coverage from top newspapers such as the Washington Post and […]

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