Food, Agriculture, and Environmental Law

Food, Agriculture, and Environmental Law
Mary Jane Angelo, Jason J. Czarnezki, and William S. Eubanks II
Release Date

In the groundbreaking Food, Agriculture, and Environmental Law leading environmental legal scholars Mary Jane Angelo, Jason Czarnezki, and Bill Eubanks, along with five distinguished contributing authors, undertake an exploration of the challenging political and societal issues facing agricultural policy and modern food systems through the lens of environmental protection laws. Through this exploration, the authors seek to answer difficult questions about the need for new approaches to agricultural policy and environmental law to meet 21st Century concerns surrounding:

  • Climate change
  • Sustainable agriculture
  • Accessibility to healthy foods
  • Conservation of natural resources and ecosystem services

This is the first book to examine both the impact of agricultural policy on the environment and the influence of environmental law on food and agriculture. The authors present a brief historical overview of agricultural policy as it has adapted to satisfy shifting demands and new technologies, and its role in shaping not only the current farming system and the rural economy, but also the value which we ascribe to our natural resources relative to agricultural production. The authors:

  • Explain in detail the components of the current farm bill
  • Analyze the ecological impacts of the modern farming system encouraged by our nation's agricultural policy
  • Examine the interplay between agriculture, food production and distribution, and existing environmental and related laws
  • Conclude with several concrete proposals to reform agricultural policy that serve as models of how to enhance sustainability in our farming and food system

This book supplies a comprehensive, timely, and cohesive guide on the intersection of agriculture and the natural environment. It achieves this goal through an interdisciplinary lens, engaging diverse perspectives to provide both a practical and academic examination of the environmental impacts of current farm policy, the applicability of environmental regulatory mechanisms to agriculture and food, and reform proposals to combat environmental harms while protecting farmers' economic interests as well as the rural communities they bolster. As a result, this work serves as the quintessential text for bringing these issues to the classroom in a variety of fields, including law, public policy, agricultural economics, and environmental science.

About the Author

Mary Jane Angelo is a Professor of Law, Director of the Environmental and Land Use Law Program, and University of Florida Research Foundation Professor at the University of Florida Levin College of Law. She is also Affiliate Faculty in both the University of Florida School of Natural Resources and Water Institute. Mary Jane has published extensively on a variety of environmental law topics including pesticide law, endangered species law, water and wetlands law, sustainable agriculture, the regulation of genetically modified organisms, and the relationship between law and science. Her articles have been published in the Texas Law Review, the Wake Forest Law Review, the George Mason Law Review, the Harvard Environmental Law Review, Ecology Law Quarterly, and Environmental Law. Her forthcoming book, The Law and Ecology of Pesticides and Pest Management, will be published by Ashgate Publishing in 2013.

Mary Jane serves on two National Academy of Sciences, National Research Council Committees: The Committee on Independent Scientific Review of Everglades Restoration Progress and the Committee on Ecological Risk Assessment under FIFRA and the ESA. Mary Jane is also a member of the Vermont Law School summer faculty and has taught and lectured throughout the United States and other parts of the world, including Belize, Brazil, Costa Rica, Poland, and Uruguay. She is also a Member-Scholar with the Center for Progressive Reform in Washington, D.C.

Prior to joining academia, May Jane practiced as an environmental lawyer for many years. She served in the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Office of the Administrator and Office of General Counsel in Washington, D.C., and as Senior Assistant General Counsel for the St. Johns River Water Management District in Florida. Her substantial environmental law practice has included water law, wetlands law, endangered species law, pesticides law, biotechnology law, and hazardous and toxic substances law. Mary Jane received her B.S., with High Honors, in biological sciences from Rutgers University, and both her M.S., in Entomology, and J.D., with Honors, from the University of Florida.

Jason Czarnezki is, as of the 2013-2014 academic year, the Gilbert & Sarah Kerlin Distinguished Professor of Environmental Law at Pace Law School. Prior to joining the Pace Law faculty, he was Professor of Law in the Environmental Law Center at Vermont Law School and faculty director of the U.S.-China Partnership for Environmental Law. He also has held academic appointments at Marquette University Law School and the DePaul University College of Law. Jason also served as a guest researcher at Uppsala University in Sweden in 2011 and spent the 2009-2010 academic year as a J. William Fulbright Scholar at Sun Yat-Sen University in Guangzhou, China. He has presented his work on environmentalism, natural resources law, food policy, and global climate policy at universities, public interest organizations, government institutions, and conferences throughout the United States, Europe, and Asia.

Previously, he served as a law clerk to the Hon. D. Brock Hornby of the U.S. District Court for the District of Maine and as a law clerk for the Bureau of Legal Services at the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources. His articles have been published in the law journals of Boston College, Boston University, Stanford University, the University of Chicago, the University of Colorado, the University of Maryland, and the University of Virginia, and he is the author of Everyday Environmentalism: Law, Nature and Individual Behavior (ELI 2011). Jason received his undergraduate and law degrees from the University of Chicago.

Bill Eubanks is a partner at one of the nation’s leading public interest environmental law firms, Meyer Glitzenstein & Crystal, where he litigates complex federal environmental cases on behalf of conservation organizations under the Endangered Species Act, National Environmental Policy Act, Clean Water Act, National Park Service Organic Act, and other statutes. Cases on which he has worked include challenging Deepwater Horizon oil spill response strategies harming sea turtles, garnering protections for endangered Indiana bats from an industrial wind energy project, obtaining agency records regarding federal financing of coal-fired power facilities, forcing a reconsideration of critical habitat for the California tiger salamander, reducing off-road vehicle use in Florida’s Big Cypress National Preserve, and co-authoring several amicus briefs in the U.S. Supreme Court on standing and remedies in environmental cases involving climate change, genetically modified crops, and naval sonar use.

Among other topics, Bill has also written and lectured extensively about the environmental and public health impacts of agricultural policy and examined various proposals to create more sustainable and resilient food systems. Bill serves as an Adjunct Professor of Law at Vermont Law School and an Adjunct Associate Professor of Law at American University’s Washington College of Law, where he teaches courses on environmental law, food systems, and agricultural policy.

Bill received his undergraduate degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; his law degree, magna cum laude, from North Carolina Central University School of Law; and his LL.M. in Environmental Law, summa cum laude, from Vermont Law School.

Book Reviews

“This book is an essential guide for changing the direction and dynamics of a food production system in deep peril. The good news is that we already have a complex structure of policies, laws, and regulations in place that, if properly applied, could help us right the course of American agriculture. Food, Agriculture, and Environmental Law may be just the book to inspire a new generation of policymakers, activists, and lawyers to rebuild a food system around the principles of environmental sustainability, social equity, and rural vitality.”
- Daniel Imhoff, Distinguished Author (Food Fight: The Citizen’s Guide to the Next Food and Farm Bill and Farming with the Wild: Enhancing Biodiversity on Farms and Ranches) and Director at Watershed Media

“This groundbreaking book has arrived in the nick of time to provide a carefully crafted blueprint for what must be done to reform our food and agricultural systems through existing laws and policies. A must read for anyone who enjoys healthy food produced in an ecologically sustainable manner, this book provides a ray of hope in a darkening landscape.”
- Patrick A. Parenteau, Professor of Law and Senior Counsel to the Environmental and Natural Resources Law Clinic, Vermont Law School