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Research Reports

ELI publishes Research Reports available for free download that present the analysis and conclusions of the policy studies ELI undertakes to improve environmental law and policy. These reports contribute to education of the profession and disseminate diverse points of view and opinions to stimulate a robust and creative exchange of ideas. Those publications, which express opinions of the authors and not necessarily those of the Institute, its Board of Directors, or funding organizations, exemplify ELI’s commitment to dialogue with all sectors.

State Constraints: State-Imposed Limitations on the Authority of Agencies to Reg

State Constraints: State-Imposed Limitations on the Authority of Agencies to Regulate Waters Beyond the Scope of the Federal Clean Water Act

May 2013

ELI has released a 50-state study identifying laws that can limit the ability of state agencies to protect wetlands, streams, and other water resources more broadly than federal law. The study finds that over two-thirds of all U.S. states have versions of these “stringency” and property rights laws. Read More >

A Guide to State Management of Offshore Wind Energy in the Mid-Atlantic Region

A Guide to State Management of Offshore Wind Energy in the Mid-Atlantic Region

James McElfish, Adam Schempp, and Jordan Diamond
April 2013
Siting Wind Energy Facilities - What Do Local Elected Officials Need to Know?

Siting Wind Energy Facilities - What Do Local Elected Officials Need to Know?

James M. McElfish Jr. and Judith M. Amsalem
February 2013

Siting Wind Energy Facilities – What Do Local Elected Officials Need to Know? is a brief guide to aid local officials in understanding commercial-scale wind siting. Local government officials presented with potential wind energy projects in their municipalities often find that clear and concise answers to their citizens ’ concerns can be difficult to locate. Read More >

Wetlands, Wildlife Habitat, and Flood Hazards in the Cedar River Basin, Iowa

Wetlands, Wildlife Habitat, and Flood Hazards in the Cedar River Basin, Iowa

Rebecca L. Kihslinger, David Salvesen, and Eric Thomas
February 2013

The Wetlands, Wildlife Habitat, and Flood Hazards in the Cedar River Basin, Iowa workshop report is the final report of the 2012 Wetlands Wildlife Habitat, and Flood Hazards in the Cedar River Basin Workshop designed to find ways to protect wetlands and wildlife habitat and promote resilience to flooding. Read More >

At the Confluence of the Clean Water Act and Prior Appropriation: The Challenge

At the Confluence of the Clean Water Act and Prior Appropriation: The Challenge and Ways Forward

Adam Schempp
January 2013

This report (1) details the impact that water quantity law and practice has had on water quality, and likewise water quality rules on water quantity management; (2) analyzes the legal authorities of states and the federal government over water quantity and quality, respectively, and briefly recaps the current state of takings law relevant to appropriative rights and the Clean Water Act; and (3) identifies laws, policies, government structures, and other factors that can advance relationships between, and ultimately the outcomes for, water quality and quantity management. Read More >