Journal of Environmental Law and Litigation

  • Symposium

Registration closed on September 4th. You may still attend the symposium, but we cannot guarantee breakfast or lunch for unregistered participants.

The Journal of Environmental Law and Litigation and the Environmental and Natural Resources Law Program are pleased to present the 2009/2010 JELL Symposium:

Advocating for an Environment of Equality:
Legal and Ethical Duties in a Changing Climate

September 11, 2009, 8-5pm
University of Oregon School of Law
Knight Law Center, Room 175
Eugene, Oregon

The 2009 JELL Symposium is FREE and OPEN to the public!

Though climate change is a pressing concern for all people and species, the most vulnerable communities and ecosystems suffer the largest share of the devastating impacts of a warming globe. The law must reshape current discourse on climate law and policy by addressing these inequitable effects while continuing innovative efforts to protect the environment, biodiversity, and human health. This free public symposium will host panel and keynote presentations to examine these critical issues through the lens of climate ethics, equity, and the law. Event sponsored by the Journal of Environmental Law and Litigation with the support of the Wayne Morse Center for Law and Politics and the Bowermen Center for Environmental Law. CLE credits pending.

The Symposium would like to honor the life and work of Luke Cole. We will be dedicating our Symposium issue to Luke. If you would like more information on the Center for Race, Poverty and the Environment or how to support their work please click here.


8:00-9:00am: Registration and Breakfast

9:00-9:30am: Morning Keynote

  • Professor Rebecca Tsosie from Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law

    Listen to the Morning Keynote
  • Description: "Indigenous Peoples and Global Climate Change: Intercultural Models of Climate Equity"

    This presentation will frame the issue of "climate equity" within a global context, but focus on the impacts of climate change on indigenous peoples. Indigenous peoples have been identified as "vulnerable groups" within the discussions on climate change, and it is projected that many indigenous groups will experience relocation and destruction of their traditional lifeways. This grim reality poses a unique set of challenges for all governments, and also features an opportunity to examine the legal and ethical duties that might arise from these challenges.

    9:30-10:45am: Panel 1 From the Northwest to Copenhagen: An Overview of Climate Change Law

    Listen to Panel 1

    Description: This panel will provide a broad framework from which to assess climate ethics and equity by providing an overview of current legal issues and events happening in climate change law. This panel will explore the current state of climate change law in the northwest, at the national level, and at the international level.

    Moderator: Professor Mary Wood, University of Oregon School of Law


  • Professor Hari Osofsky, Washington and Lee University School of Law
    View PPT presentation
  • Professor Svitlana Kravchenko, University of Oregon School of Law
    View PPT presentation
  • Professor Melissa Powers, Lewis & Clark Law School
    View PPT presentation
  • 11:00am-12:15pm: Panel 2 International Impacts and Equity: Displacement to Refuge

    Listen to Panel 2

    Description: This panel will explore the disproportionate impacts of climate change internationally. The panel will specifically focus on displaced persons and environmental refugees, looking at the legal implications and ethical concerns in a time of changing climate.

    Moderator: Heather Brinton, Assistant Director, Environmental and Natural Resources Law Program


  • Professor Elizabeth Burleson, University of South Dakota School of Law
  • Wade Norris, Co-Founder, Program to Relocate and Assist Environmental Refugees
    View PPT presentation
  • Professor Maxine Burkett, University of Hawaii School of Law
  • 12:15pm-1:45pm: Lunch & Keynote

    Luke Cole Commemoration: 12:30
    Keynote Address: 12:40pm-1:30pm

  • Lou Leonard, Director for U.S. Policy on International Climate Affairs, World Wildlife Fund
  • Listen to the Lunch Keynote
    View PPT presentation

    Description: “Accepting Responsibility: Creating an Effective and Equitable Response to Climate Change”

    America has awoken from a decade’s slumber on climate change; and not a moment too soon. But as we work to pass the first comprehensive climate legislation in US history, what signals are we sending to the rest of the world and how will these efforts affect prospects for a global climate treaty in Copenhagen? Central to these questions is how we divide responsibility for responding to climate change between the industrialized and developing worlds. This is one of the great challenges for enacting and then implementing strong and fair climate solutions.

    1:45-3:00pm: Panel 3 The Face of Climate Change in the US: Access to Justice for Victims of Environmental Racism and Classism

    Listen to Panel 3

    Description: This panel will explore the disproportionate impacts of climate change and other environmental factors domestically. From the location of factories and highways to the cost of organic goods, different communities are affected by and deal with environmental concerns differently. Climate mitigation and adaptation strategies have environmental justice implications that affect efforts to protect vulnerable communities from the inevitable impacts of climate change. This panel will discuss the legal ramifications and ability to access justice by these communities. (We will be applying for access to justice CLE credit).

    Moderator: Teresa Jacobs, Editor-In-Chief, Journal of Environmental Law and Litigation


  • Brent Newell, Legal Director, Center on Race, Poverty & the Environment
    View PPT presentation
  • Professor Alice Kaswan, University of San Francisco School of Law
    View PPT presentation
  • 3:15-4:30pm: Panel 4 Legal Ethics in Environmental Law

    Listen to Panel 4

    Description: This panel will explore ethical duties specific to environmental law by addressing specific codes of conduct, ethical obligations, and professional responsibilities of environmental attorneys. (We will be applying for ethics CLE credit).

    Moderator: Margaret Hallock, Director, Wayne Morse Center for Law and Politics


  • Brent Foster, Special Counsel, Oregon Attorney General's Office
  • View PPT presentation

  • Larry Sanders, Staff Attorney, Emory Law School: Turner Environmental Law Clinic
    View PPT presentation
  • Charlie Tebbutt, Attorney, Western Environmental Law Center
  • 4:30-5:00pm: Afternoon Keynote

  • Professor David Hodas from Widener Law

    View PPT presentation
    Listen to the Afternoon Keynote

    Description: This presentation will provide a conceptual framework for a climate change agreement that advances human development. The framework is based on a new paradigm that rethinks how we address legal, scientific, technological, social and economic systems. The presentation will propose that climate problems be addressed through a process of integration of complex systems. The talk will try to evaluate presentations made at the symposium within the context of this systems paradigm.

  • 5:00pm: JELL Alumni Reception

    Alumni Weekend is also this weekend:

    If you graduated in a 2009 reunion year (1959, 1964, 1969, 1974, 1979, 1984, 1989, 1994, 1999, 2004) and would like to register for this event along with the reunion, please go to

    To view reunion events, visit,

    Campus Map
    Directions & Lodging

    For a link to our 2008/2009 Symposium, LIVING ON A FINITE EARTH: Energy Law and Policy for a New Era, please follow this link:

    For a link to our 2007/2008 Symposium, Combating Climate Change On The Regional Level West Coast Policy and Litigation, please follow this link:

    For a link to our 2006/2007 Symposium, At the Crossroads: In Search of Sustainable Solutions in the Klamath Basin, please follow this link: