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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.

Fast-Tracking “Good” Restoration Projects in the Gulf of Mexico

Fast-Tracking Good Restoration Projects in the Gulf of Mexico

February 2017

In April 2016, a federal court approved a settlement among the United States, five Gulf states, and BP. This settlement resolved all of the federal and state governments’ remaining claims against BP related to the Deepwater Horizon (DWH) oil spill. Under the terms of that settlement, billions of dollars will flow to the Gulf for restoration and recovery over the coming decades. This includes up to $8.8 billion that will be distributed through the natural resource damage assessment (NRDA) process, and $4.4 billion that will distributed through the RESTORE Act. Read More >

Strategic Partnerships and Floodplain Buyouts - Report Cover

Strategic Partnerships and Floodplain Buyouts: An Opportunity for Wetland Restoration

University of North Carolina Institute for the Environment; Environmental Law Institute
February 2017

This Handbook summarizes key considerations for wetland and conservation agencies or organizations interested in playing a role in the floodplain buyout process. These organizations can be valuable partners for local governments while advancing their interest in ecosystem and habitat conservation or restoration. Read More >

Blindsided by Change: Slow Threats and Environmental Policy

Blindsided by Change: Slow Threats and Environmental Policy

Robert L. Olson, Senior Fellow, Institute for Alternative Futures, and David Rejeski, Director, Technology, Innovation and the Environment Project, Environmental Law Institute
January 2017

Some threats to the environment, like acid rain and stratospheric ozone depletion, emerged fairly rapidly, and abrupt threats like an oil or toxic chemical spill demand an immediate response. But most environmental problems have the opposite character: they involve slow threats where small, hardly noticeable changes add up over time to produce large impacts. Read More >