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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.

Food Waste Co-Digestion at Water Resource Recovery Facilities: Business Case Ana

Food Waste Co-Digestion at Water Resource Recovery Facilities: Business Case Analysis

Carol Adaire Jones, Craig Coker, Ken Kirk, and Lovinia Reynolds
December 2019

Co-digestion of food wastes with wastewater solids at water resource recovery facilities (WRRFs) can provide financial benefits to WRRFs as well as a broad range of environmental and community benefits. Co-digestion is a core element of the wastewater sector’s “Utility of the Future” initiative, which envisions a new business approach for pioneering WRRFs to create valuable energy and nutrient products via the recovery and reuse of residuals from the wastewater treatment process. Read More >

Digital Technology Opportunities for the Colorado River Basin

Digital Technology Opportunities for the Colorado River Basin

Environmental Law Institute & Water Foundry
November 2019

The American West, including the cities of Las Vegas, Nevada; Los Angeles, California; Phoenix, Arizona; and Denver, Colorado, falling under the reaches of the greater Colorado River Basin (CRB), is now among the world's water stressed regions facing the environmental, economic, and social challenges of increased water scarcity. The CRB supplies more than 1 in 10 Americans with some, if not all, of their water for municipal use, including drinking water. Read More >

3D-Printers and Maker-Spaces

3D-Printers and Maker-Spaces: Improving Health and Environmental Sustainability Through Voluntary Standards

University of Vermont for the Environmental Law Institute
August 2019

This report is the culmination of a three-month investigation into the nature of 3d-printing with regards to potential social and environmental implications. Three graduate students from the Sustainability Innovation MBA program at the University of Vermont teamed up with members of the Environmental Law Institute to identify these implications and offer recommendations for sustainability within the specific sector of maker-spaces in the 3d-printing industry. Read More >

Funding for Environmental Assessment and Remediation at Child Care Facilities: A Review of Selected Resources

Environmental Law Institute
July 2019

Environmental site hazards at a child care facility may arise from contamination of the air, soil, or water caused by historical uses of the property or nearby activities. Identifying and remedying site 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. Read More >

In-Lieu Fee Mitigation: Review of Program Instruments and Implementation Across

In-Lieu Fee Mitigation: Review of Program Instruments and Implementation Across the Country

Environmental Law Institute and Institute for Biodiversity Law and Policy, Stetson University College of Law
July 2019

In-Lieu Fee (ILF) mitigation is one of the three primary mechanisms—along with mitigation banks and permittee responsible mitigation—that permittees can use to satisfy compensatory mitigation requirements. Through an ILF program, a permittee may satisfy their legal obligations under the 2008 Compensatory Mitigation Rule by purchasing credits from the program “sponsor”—a government or non-profit natural resources management entity—who then uses the funds to restore, enhance, or protect wetlands and streams. Read More >