Adapting Laws for a Changing World: A Systemic Approach to Climate Change Adaptation

26 Pages Posted: 20 Apr 2012  

Victor Byers Flatt

University of Houston Law Center; University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill - School of Law; University of Houston Global Energy Management Institute

Date Written: January 1, 2012

Abstract

This Essay suggests that policy responses in climate change adaptation must be addressed and that focusing on adapting laws may be a good way to undertake this work. Following a review of existing scholarship and normative theories concerning law generally, environmental law, climate change, and adaptation, thise Essay then proposes a template for approaching the adaptation of laws. This template would (1) examine where climate change puts pressure on the operation of laws; (2) seek to alter the implementation of that law or to alter the law itself to hew closely to the law’s original purposes; and (3) make these alterations in the most efficient manner possible while also correcting any distributive reallocations. Where the law’s original purposes cannot be accommodated or are so broad as to fail to constitute a clear legislative principle, policy changes should be made in the democratic forum, not by an administrative process. The Essay concludes with examples from working groups implementing the template approach.

Suggested Citation

Flatt, Victor Byers, Adapting Laws for a Changing World: A Systemic Approach to Climate Change Adaptation (January 1, 2012). Florida Law Review, Vol. 64, No. 269, 2012; UNC Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2042607. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2042607

Victor Byers Flatt (Contact Author)

University of Houston Law Center ( email )

4604 Calhoun Road
Houston, TX 77204-6060
United States
713-922-0392 (Phone)

University of North Carolina (UNC) at Chapel Hill - School of Law ( email )

Van Hecke-Wettach Hall, 160 Ridge Road
CB #3380
Chapel Hill, NC 27599-3380
United States

HOME PAGE: http://www.law.unc.edu/faculty/directory/details.aspx?cid=1022

University of Houston Global Energy Management Institute ( email )

Houston, TX 77204-6021
United States

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