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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.

Coordination in the Natural Resource Damage Assessment Process: Project Planning and Selection

Amy Streitwieser, Teresa Chan, and Jay Austin
June 2018

Our report, Coordination in the Natural Resource Damage Assessment Process: Project Planning and Selection, describes some tools that are available to the Deepwater Horizon NRDA trustees during project planning and selection that could help coordinate their activities internally within the NRDA program and with external entities. In particular, it focuses on (1) project screening criteria; (2) strategic frameworks; and (3) joint restoration planning. Read More >

Addressing Environmental Site Hazards at Child Care Facilities: A Review of State Policy Strategies

Tobie Bernstein
May 2018

Environmental site hazards may arise from contamination caused by historical uses of a property, or from nearby activities that remain a source of pollution or other environmental health concerns. Identifying and remedying such hazards before a child care facility is licensed, as well as during facility operations, can help prevent and reduce harmful exposures to staff and children.  It is especially important to prevent environmental exposures to young children, because their developing bodies may make them more vulnerable to the effects of contaminants. Read More >

RCRA and Retail: Considering the Fate of Consumer Aerosol Cans

RCRA and Retail: Considering the Fate of Consumer Aerosol Cans

Environmental Law Institute
May 2018

Minimizing waste generation includes diverting waste streams to reuse and recycling as well as recapturing materials. In devising new approaches for the management of materials and the diversion of wastes under RCRA, federal regulators can draw on their knowledge and years of experience working with particular sectors and materials. In the retail sector, managing discarded and returned consumer aerosol cans can hit the "tripwire" for RCRA ignitability, requiring their management as hazardous waste. Read More >

Coordination in the Natural Resource Damage Assessment Process: General Tools and Mechanisms

Amy Streitwieser, Teresa Chan, Jay Austin, Azi Akpan
March 2018

As a result of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, a number of different funding processes have been put in place to help restore and recover the Gulf of Mexico. The three main ones are the natural resource damage assessment (NRDA), the RESTORE Act, and the National Fish & Wildlife Foundation (NFWF) Gulf Environmental Benefit Fund (GEBF), which together will distribute over $16 billion. Each of these processes has its own objectives, timelines, governance structure, and opportunities for the public to engage. Read More >

Managing Environmental Protection and Economic Considerations Under Select U.S.

Managing Environmental Protection and Economic Considerations Under Select U.S. Environmental Laws and Permitting Systems

Scott Fulton, John Pendergrass, and Christopher Ibrahim.
March 2018

In response to growing concerns over increased air and water pollution, by the early 1970s the United States Congress had begun enacting a series of statutes that continue to shape environmental law today, more than four decades later.  The laws authorize federal agencies to regulate air quality, water quality, the management and disposal of solid and hazardous wastes; and to protect threatened or endangered species of plants and animals. Congress, in enacting these environmental laws, knew that it was imposing significant compliance costs on regulated sectors of the economy. Read More >