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Vibrant Environment

Brother(s), Can You Spare a Dime? Crowdfunding Environmental Action

Crowdfunding is the strategy of raising funds from a large number of people (Pho
By Dave Rejeski, Director; Technology, Innovation and the Environment Project, and Jessye Waxman, Research Associate
Wednesday, September 20, 2017

In 2008, as many financial instruments dissolved stranding their investors in seas of debt and spasms of panic, a new instrument appeared at the intersection of the crowd and the web: crowdfunding.

Emerging Environmental Issues in Native Communities

ELI will examine emerging legal issues in Native American Communities.
By Cynthia Harris, Staff Attorney
Monday, September 18, 2017

Tribes and Native villages are demonstrating reinvigorated environmental activism as they face increased pressures on natural resource use. Consequently, some of the most significant new developments in environmental law are occurring in Indian country. This month, ELI features a two-part webinar series on “Emerging Environmental Issues in Native Communities.”

Oh, SNAP! D.C. Circuit Limits EPA’s Authority to Regulate HFCs

HFCs are powerful greenhouse gases (Photo: Wikimedia Commons).
By Robert Kelsey, Associate Editor, Environmental Law Reporter
Wednesday, September 13, 2017

On August 8, 2017, the D.C. Circuit held in Mexichem Fluor, Inc. v. EPA, No. 15-1328 (D.C. Cir. Aug. 8, 2017), that EPA overstepped its authority under the CAA when it banned the use of hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) in products. HFCs were adopted as alternatives to ozone-depleting substances (ODSs) in the 1990s under the Montreal Protocol. Their adoption was encouraged through application of EPA's Significant New Alternatives Policy (SNAP) Program, which was created to help implement U.S.

The Death of Public Citizen in Pipeline NEPA Analysis

A natural gas pipeline under construction (Photo: Wikimedia Commons).
By Howard Nelson, Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig, Kenneth M. Minesinger, Shareholder, Greenberg Traurig, and Gus Howard, Attorney, Greenberg Traurig
Monday, September 11, 2017

Last month, the D.C. Circuit held in a 2-1 opinion that FERC was required to consider the downstream emissions created by power plants to be served by a proposed pipeline in Florida. The case not only raises questions about the scope of FERC’s NEPA review for new natural gas pipeline projects, but also about the application of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Department of Transportation v. Public Citizen, 541 U.S. 752 (2004).

FIFRA at 40: The Case for Stronger Criminal Penalties

Farm workers are at high risk of harmful pesticide exposure (Photo: Aqua Mech.)
Wednesday, September 6, 2017

In 2010, two sisters—ages 1 and 4—died after licensed exterminators misapplied pesticides too close to their home. In 2011, roughly 60 dead mammals and migratory birds were found on and near a private hunting preserve after pesticides were unlawfully applied in hopes of killing coyotes. And in 2015, an entire family was hospitalized, and now suffers from neurological damage, following the improper pesticide fumigation of their house. Yet, the perpetrators in each of these cases were only charged with misdemeanors.

Going for Gold, and for Green: Olympics Offer Paris and Los Angeles the Chance to Showcase Environmental Leadership

Sustainability will be a key focus of the 2028 Olympic Games in Los Angeles (Pho
By Emmett McKinney, Research Associate
Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Paris and Los Angeles are set to host the 2024 and 2028 Olympic Games, respectively. Hosting the games will offer these cities the chance to showcase not only their countries’ finest athletes, but also their technological innovation and cultural vibrancy. However, preparing for the Olympics also presents massive infrastructural, economic, and environmental challenges.

Climate Change Meets Green Infrastructure: Deploying New Stormwater Infrastructure Techniques Against Flooding and Water Quality Threats in the Chesapeake Watershed

A Maryland shoreline was designed for climate resilience (Photo: Will Parson).
By Cynthia Harris, Staff Attorney
Monday, August 28, 2017

Home to nearly 18 million people, the Chesapeake Bay region is expected to be hit hard by climate change-driven increases in sea level, flooding, and precipitation.

Helping Communities Participate in the NEPA Scoping Process

The Mississippi River Delta.
By Amy Streitwieser, Staff Attorney
Wednesday, August 23, 2017

In mid-July, I traveled to Louisiana with fellow ELI Gulf Team member Teresa Chan to host three workshops with the Restore the Mississippi River Delta coalition.

As Nations Shift Toward Low-Emission Vehicles, Roadblocks Remain

An electric car charges at a station in Newcastle, England (Photo: Wikimedia Com
By Robert Kelsey, Associate Editor, Environmental Law Reporter
Monday, August 21, 2017

As reported previously in the Environmental Law Reporter's Weekly Update, several countries have expressed their desire to move away from vehicles powered by diesel and gas in recent months. Most recently, the British government committed to ban the sale of diesel and gas vehicles from 2040 to curb rising levels of nitrogen oxide.

Is Marijuana the Next Big Thing? Environmental Opportunities in the Cannabis Sector

A cannabis sativa plant (Photo: Wikimedia Commons).
By Dave Rejeski, Director; Technology, Innovation and the Environment Project
Wednesday, August 16, 2017

What is the most valuable crop in California? It isn’t almonds ($5.3 billion), strawberries ($1.8 billion), or grapes ($1.3 billion), but cannabis, now worth around $17 billion annually. In fact, cannabis is presently the fastest growing industry in the United States with over 30 percent per year compound growth according to preliminary 2016 revenues reported in Colorado by the Marijuana Enforcement Division.