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This course is the introductory course in the regulation of energy in the United States. It also considers some of the international impact of U.S. energy policy. The course examines each significant form of energy (oil, natural gas, nuclear power, electricity, coal and renewables) in terms of the manner in which each form is regulated by various government institutions. To understand the various forms of regulation, we will also consider a substantial amount of economic, political and socio/psychological information. Each segment of the course will be presented in terms of specific problems that participating students will help analyze and solve. At each stage of the course, we will consider the current policies and attempt to develop regulatory goals and positions that will improve those policies. The syllabus for this course is designed to avoid significant overlap with the course in oil and gas law and the course in energy, international security and the global economy.
ENVR 960: Environmental Law
This course introduces the basic environmental statutes of the United States and the history from which they arose. It includes a focused examination of the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, the National Environmental Policy Act, and several other major U.S. environmental laws. It pays close attention to the regulatory tools of these statutes, cooperative federalism, the role of the federal courts, and to cost-benefit analysis in risk regulation generally.
ENVR 965: Oil and Gas Law
Oil and Gas Law
This course will address the basic concepts in oil and gas law within the United States as well as the specific legal issues associated with the development of the Marcellus Shale formation. This specific topics to be covered include the ownership or oil and gas, oil and gas leasing, oil and gas conservation laws, oil and gas interests, and government regulation of development.
ENVR 966: Law and Policy of Shale Gas Development
Law and Policy of Shale Gas Development
This course will address current legal and policy aspects of shale oil and gas development. Students will focus on the major policy issues that are shaping - and have shaped - the development of the law in the early years of the so-called "Shale Revolution." The topics that will be covered in this class include water quality, air quality, and other environmental issues; determining the appropriate regulatory entity to oversee developmental activities; managing economic benefits at the individual, community, and state level in the short and long term; construction of an appropriate infrastructure; government role in developing new technologies and expanding markets for product; international development; and the role of shale oil and gas in our national energy portfolio.
ENVR 967: Water Law and Policy
Water Law and Policy
This course provides an overview of U.S.-focused law and policy related to water. This includes the allocation of water supplies under the riparian and prior appropriation doctrines, as well as the federal reserved rights doctrine, the Endangered Species Act, and cases testing the public interest. In addition, the course examines water quality concerns under the Clean Water Act, with a specific focus on the Chesapeake Bay. Finally, the course covers special topics related to water law and policy, including flooding, drought, and climate change; drinking water, wastewater, and infrastructure; energy and the development of Marcellus Shale; and trans-boundary/ international water issues.
ENVR 988: Natural Resources Law
Natural Resources Law
This course is an introduction to the public and private claims to natural resources. Its focus is the common law but brief introductions of major natural resource protection statutes like the Endangered Species Act, the National Environmental Policy Act, and others are included. The course also studies major resource-types like water, minerals, timber, recreation and scenery in their overall legal context.