Environmental and Natural Resources Law Center

For more than 50 years, the University of Oregon School of Law's Environmental and Natural Resources Law (ENR) Center's focus on public interest environmental law and commitment to innovations in environmental legal education have made it one of the nation's most respected programs.


From Wolves to the Warning to Humanity: Facing the Environmental Crisis Through Science 

Featuring OSU's Dr. Bill Ripple, Professor of Ecology, founder of the Alliance of World Scientists, and co-author of the World Scientists' Warning to Humanity: A Second Notice.Ripple will present his work on how the far-reaching impacts of wolves are affecting the ecosystem in Yellowstone National Park. He will illustrate how he transitioned from Yellowstone to other national parks in western North America and beyond to demonstrate both the benefits of wild large predators and the costs of their demise. Ripple will disclose how his conservation research and general concern about the global environment and climate change led to him publishing the letter “World Scientists’ Warning to Humanity: A Second Notice.” Featuring special guest, Congressman Peter DeFazio. Monday April 22, 2019 at 7:00 PM. 156 Straub Hall, University of Oregon. Register Here. 

Innovative Oregon: Building A Climate for Success 

Oregon has long been admired for its natural resources and the state's economy has been dependent upon these resources since the start of statehood. As a result, Oregon is well-positioned to be a model for natural resource conservation, renewable energy expansion, and carbon reduction policy. Join us as we hear from state lawmakers, agencies, businesses, and attorneys to learn about how Oregon is paving the way in these fields. Topics will cover water conservation policy, business trusts, prospective growth in renewable energy, and a other sustainable legislation. Register here. 

ENR Center Moves Up in National Ranking 

The Environmental and Natural Resources Law Center of the University of Oregon School of Law is again a top-ranked academic program according to U.S. News and World Report. The program rose to #8 in the nation. The ENR Center has consistently ranked among the leading environmental law programs in the U.S. for 14 years. Read more. 

ENR Law Center receives National Jurist highest grade among nation’s best

The University of Oregon School of Law’s Environmental Natural Resources Law Center received a grade of ‘A+’ according to newly released rankings from preLaw magazine, a publication of The National Jurist. A+ is the highest score possible on its new list of best law school programs. The magazine graded law schools based on the breadth of curricular offerings. Oregon ENR program’s focus on public interest environmental law and commitment to innovation in legal education have made it one of the nation’s most respected programs for more than 50 years. Read more. 


60 Minutes Interviews UO Student 

"Juliana — who, like the other plaintiffs, was a teen when the suit originally was filed — has taken her message of climate recovery nationally and internationally. In response, young people from around the world have been inspired to take action. However, despite speaking about the lawsuit to so many audiences, she and the other plaintiffs are still waiting for the chance to testify before a federal court in Eugene." Watch on CBS. 



 2019 Public Interest Environmental Law Conference: Common Ground 

At the University of Oregon

February 28-March 3, 2019

Register Here. 

Click here to see the full brochure.  



Tribal Tools & Legal Levers for Halting Fossil Fuel Transport & Exports Through the Pacific Northwest  

The Native Environmental Sovereignty Project under the guidance of Professor Mary Wood published "Tribal Tools and Legal Levers for Halting Fossil Fuel Transport & Exports Through the Pacific Northwest" in the American Indian Law Journal. This article highlights strategic legal avenues available to tribes in both on- and off-reservation contexts. Read their work here. 

ENR Welcomes New Research Associate, Michelle Smith 

Michelle Smith has accepted an appointment as the newest Environmental and Natural Resources Law Center (ENR) Research Associate for the University of Oregon School of Law. Michelle with assess how existing legal tools and policies can answer environmnetal problems, and how new policies, frameworks, and partnerships can be implemented to support conservation goals. Learn more here. 

Oregon's 2019 Legislative Session: Carbon Reductions on the Agenda 

Friday January 18, 2019 at UO Portland, the White Stag Block. To avoid the worst impacts of climate change, the planet has to substantially reduce its carbon pollution. In the 2019 Legislative Session, Oregon will consider doing its part. The state legislature will take up legislation to reduce the state's emissions of carbon pollution and join California and Quebec in the Western Climate Initiative. Please join us as we explore this issue with key policymakers and experts. Begins at 8:30 a.m. with coffee and ends with a networking lunch. Watch here. 

12th Annual Rennard Strickland Lecture 

On October 29, 2018, Professor Gerald Torres spoke as the 12th Annual Rennard Strickland Lecturer at the University of Oregon School of Law. His topic was "Fishing Rights after Washington v. U.S." and he discussed the recent Supreme Court case, as well as the concept of rights in general. Professor Torres is the Jane M. G. Foster Professor of Law at Cornell Law School. He is an authority on critical race theory, environmental law, and Federal Indian Law. Watch here. 

Professor Greg Dotson Comments on the Safer Affordable Fuel-Efficient (SAFE) Vehicles Rule

Professor Dotson submitted comments to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) regarding the EPA’s authority to regulate greenhouse gas emissions under section 202 of the Clean Air Act and California’s authority to do so pursuant to section 209(b) of the Clean Air Act. The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA) explicitly protects the EPA and California authority.  Read more here. 

Reclaiming Climate Balance Through Sky Cleanup  

Professor Mary Christina Wood has developed a “three-gear” strategy to catalyze recovery of our carbon-flooded atmosphere, which she argues is the air-equivalent of an oil spill. These interlocking gears include: #1) An Atmospheric Recovery Plan; #2) A Natural Resource Damage Litigation Strategy; and #3) A Sky Trust. Read more here.

O'Connell Conference 2018

On September 7, the ENR Center Co-hosted The O'Connell Conference. The topic this year was "Rajneeshpuram: Legal Legacy and Lessons." Land Use attorneys Bob Stacey and Ed Sullivan, who were involved in the case in the 1980's, both shared their perspective on how the case shaped Oregon's land use law. Watch here.


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