Environmentalism and the Wisconsin Constitution
32 Pages Posted: 24 May 2007
With its abundance of natural resources and due to the state's strong environmental policies, Wisconsin has "enjoyed a reputation as a state rich in natural beauty and recreational opportunities." Yet, despite the state's strong environmental protections, some based upon constitutional principles, this Article addresses whether Wisconsin's environmental constitutional provisions can be improved upon. This article attempts to evaluate the existing environmental provisions in the Wisconsin Constitution, and considers, looking at a variety of options and sources, whether the state should proceed forward with any changes, minor or major, to environmental law in the Wisconsin Constitution. This Article considers expansion of the public trust doctrine to allow for greater public access and to protect biodiversity and groundwater, inclusion of an environmental policy statement to symbolize the state's environmental ethic or inclusion a stronger affirmative right to a healthy environment, creation of a mechanism to improve standing in environmental cases, and discusses the tradeoffs between environmental protection and economic growth.
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