The eJournal is sponsored by the Environmental Law Center at the Vermont Law School, home to one of the nation's leading environmental law programs. Since establishing the Environmental Law Center in 1978, Vermont Law School has been training people to be environmental leaders in government, nonprofits, corporations, and private practice - locally, nationally, and internationally. With the largest and deepest graduate environmental law program in the country, the Environmental Law Center offers the most comprehensive environmental law and policy curriculum in the nation for law students, and also confers the Master of Environmental Law and Policy (MELP) and Master of Laws in Environmental Law (LLM) degrees, as well as a joint JD/MELP degree. The Vermont Law School's Environmental Law Center is also home to the Institute for Energy and the Environment, Environmental Tax Policy Institute, Climate Legacy Initiative, Land Use Institute, Partnership for Environmental Law in China, and Environmental and Natural Resources Law Clinic.

Sponsored by the Environmental Law Center at Vermont Law School

"Agriculture in a Gas Era: A Comparative Analysis of Queensland and British Columbia's Agricultural Land Protection and Unconventional Gas Regimes" Free Download
Australasian Journal of Regional Studies, Vol. 22, No. 3, pp. 459-480, 2016
Sydney Law School Research Paper No. 17/54

MADELINE TAYLOR, The University of Sydney Law School
SUSANNE TAYLOR, Bond University

The Australian Senate’s “Interim Report on Unconventional Gas Mining? was released in June 2016, following heightened political awareness of continuing public outcry relating to unconventional gas exploration. In Queensland, the state government has supported the gas industry’s headlong rush into this profitable resource sector, to the consternation of farmers who have few statutory rights to disallow access by resource companies to their agricultural land. In the early sections of this paper, we review current agricultural land protection legislation in Queensland and British Columbia; two Commonwealth states with similar socio-political and legal systems and growing unconventional gas industries. The review provides the basis of a critical analysis of ‘active’ adaptive management as a regulatory framework facilitating optimal coexistence between agriculture and unconventional natural gas. In the remaining section we apply the framework of ‘active’ adaptive management in a comparative legal analysis of the land protection and oil and gas agencies and agricultural land protection regulation in British Columbia and Queensland. In conclusion, we identify the Agricultural Land Commission system in British Columbia, Canada as exemplifying elements of ‘active’ adaptive management to assist in facilitating coexistence between arable land and unconventional gas operations.

"Marine Fisheries Law Enforcement Partnerships in Waters under National Jurisdiction: The Legal Framework for Inter-State Cooperation and Public-Private Partnerships with Non-governmental Organizations and Private Security Companies" Free Download
Forthcoming in Ocean Yearbook, Volume 32, April 2018, edited by Aldo Chircop, Scott Coffen-Smout and Moira McConnell

VALENTIN SCHATZ, University of Trier, Faculty of Law

In times of widespread illegal fishing, fisheries law enforcement is a big challenge for coastal States which often lack the necessary resources to properly police their maritime zones (Internal Waters, Territorial Sea, Archipelagic Waters, and Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ)). As a result, enforcement efforts of coastal States often produce an insufficient “demonstration effect? (through monitoring, control and surveillance) and “deterrence effect? (through enforcement and sanctions). This inadequate enforcement capacity can be supplemented by inter-State cooperation and public-private partnerships with non-profit non-governmental organizations (NGOs) or other private entities such as for-profit private security companies (PSCs). However, environmental law enforcement powers such as search, question, arrest, and use of force are usually allocated to specific governmental law enforcement agencies such as the coast guard, environmental government agencies, customs agencies, or the navy. This raises the question if, and to what extent, other States or private actors such as NGOs and PSCs could assist in or take over law enforcement functions. The present article will approach this issue from an international legal perspective. It will first provide case-studies of inter-State cooperation and public-private partnerships in fisheries law enforcement for factual background. Particularly attention will be paid to parallels in the practice of inter-State cooperation and public-private partnerships. The case-studies will be followed by a legal analysis from the perspective of public international law with a focus on the international law of the sea. Finally, the article will offer some general conclusions about the legality of such cooperation schemes as well as practical potentials and risks associated with them.

"Zero-Sum Games in Pollution Control: Ecological Thresholds, Planetary Boundaries, and Policy Choices" Free Download
University of Utah College of Law Research Paper No. 220

ROBIN KUNDIS CRAIG, University of Utah S.J. Quinney College of Law

Pollution regulation often lands us in what are perceived to be zero-sum games, but these games can differ depending on whether we are seeking to avoid ecological thresholds, such as can occur with nutrient pollution and eutrophication, or whether we are pursuing anthropocentric pollution-control goals. Focusing on the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, and climate change, this draft chapter for a forthcoming book by the Environmental Law Collaborative for the Environmental Law Institute discusses how pollution regulation often invokes limits and thresholds, creating regulatory zero-sum games in which "pies" of pollutant loads are divided among the relevant polluters. It also explores the concepts of ecological thresholds and planetary boundaries in this context before exploring climate change both as a zero-sum game in and of itself and as a zero-sum game changer.

"Appraising the Role of the IFC and Its Independent Accountability Mechanism: Community Experiences in Haiti's Mining Sector" Free Download
Sustainable Development Law and Policy Brief, Forthcoming


In 2010, the International Finance Corporation (IFC) purchased an equity stake in Eurasian Minerals Inc., a junior mining company conducting gold and copper exploration activities in Northern Haiti. The investment formed part of the IFC’s Early Equity portfolio, which supports private sector investment in nascent mineral markets. This article examines the governance role played by the IFC over the course of the company’s exploration activities in 2010 through 2012, after which a de facto moratorium emerged over gold mining operations in Haiti. This article sets out to scrutinize the role played by the IFC during the life of its investment in Haiti, querying the extent to which it was able to enhance the environmental and social outcomes and foster greater public accountability of the project—paying particular attention to the nature of IFC investments in the earliest phases of mining operations and highlighting the importance of obligations regarding community engagement and information disclosure to project-affected communities.


About this eJournal

Sponsored by: Institute for Energy and the Environment at the Vermont Law School. This eJournal distributes working and accepted paper abstracts dealing with the regulation, management, and distribution of natural resources. The eJournal will discuss a diverse array of natural resource topics such as public and private land use, wildlife and biodiversity, forest protection, mineral rights, parks and wilderness, the public trust doctrine, water and wetlands, and tribal lands and resources.

Editor: Melissa K. Scanlan, Vermont Law School


To submit your research to SSRN, sign in to the SSRN User HeadQuarters, click the My Papers link on left menu and then the Start New Submission button at top of page.

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Advisory Board

Natural Resources Law & Policy eJournal

Professor of Law, Northeastern University School of Law

James H. House and Hiram H. Hurd Professor of Environmental Regulation, and Associate Dean for Faculty Development and Research, University of California, Berkeley - School of Law

Professor, University of California, Santa Cruz, Visiting Professor of Law, University of San Diego School of Law

Professor of Law, Emory University School of Law

Professor of Law, University of California - Hastings College of the Law

Robert F. Stanton Professor of Law and Director of the Environmental Law Program, University of Maryland - Francis King Carey School of Law

Assistant Professor of Law, Lewis & Clark Law School

David Daniels Allen Distinguished Chair in Law, Vanderbilt University - Law School

Professor of Law and Director of the Natural Resources Law Center, University of Colorado Law School

Associate Professor of Law, University of Wisconsin Law School

Professor of Law, Boston University School of Law