As the national conversation following the West Virginia v. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) verdict showed, climate change continues to be a focal point of this generation. And that conversation is happening both inside and outside the courtroom in the form of amicus briefs.
"[A] single courageous State may, if its citizens choose, serve as a laboratory; and try novel social and economic experiments without risk to the rest of the country.”
Justice Louis Brandeis wrote those words nearly a century ago, and they are particularly relevant to a set of experiments in environmental regulation now being carried out at the state level.
Natural resource management can be complicated and filled with uncertainty, especially over longer time scales and across large, varied landscapes. It makes sense—natural systems are highly interconnected and complex, a fact that the ecological sciences have recognized for decades. But natural systems don’t always align with legal systems.
What events, circumstances, and perspectives have ongoing impacts on migrants’ lives, and how can we better understand the complexity of this ongoingness?
An explosion of monitoring technologies, big data, expanded analytical abilities, and other technologies raises the possibility, albeit with caveats, that technological developments can help solve long standing environmental justice challenges. At ELI’s 7th GreenTech webinar on July 29, 2021, “Technology and Environmental Justice,” experts discussed how technology could play a role in key policies and programs.
A new model ordinance on mandatory reporting for large food waste generators, developed by the Environmental Law Institute (ELI) and NRDC, could make it easier for municipalities around the country to collect data on food waste and surplus food generation, increase awareness of the problem of food waste, and ultimately lead to reductions of disposal of food waste in landfills and incinerators.
The Biden Administration recently finalized the first phase of a two-part rulemaking process to reverse some of the Trump Administration’s revisions to CEQ rules for implementing NEPA. In mid-April, ELI hosted a panel to discuss how these new rules might alter federal agency reviews of climate change and environmental justice impacts.
Just over a half-century ago, Diet for a Small Planet, Frances Moore Lappé’s surprise best seller, exposed the harms of animal agriculture to a wide audience in the same way that Rachel Carson’s book of a decade earlier, Silent Spring, put to widespread shame the practice of applying pesticides to cropland. The title of Moore Lappé’s book encapsulates her thesis. The math in 1971 made a compelling case that abandoning meat is indeed necessary to avoid crossing planetary boundaries.
Rice is a primary food source for more than half of the world’s population—especially in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. In China, the rice-consuming culture I’m most familiar with, rice is breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert. Even the Chinese character for “cooked rice” simultaneously means “food.” Rice is security, sustenance, and life itself.