Environmental Law

Free Speech and Climate Change

Short video featuring Andrew Grossman
Andrew Grossman April 19, 2016

Andrew Grossman, Partner at BakerHostetler, explains the investigation of the fossil fuel industry and public policy groups skeptical of climate change by the Attorneys General of nineteen states. He underscores the importance of free speech in public policy debates on climate change. Mr. Grossman is also Counsel for the Competitive Enterprise Institute.

WOTUS comes to SCOTUS: Oral Arguments heard in U.S. Army Corps of Engineers v. Hawkes Company - Podcast

Environmental Law & Property Rights Practice Group Podcast
Mark Miller March 31, 2016

Can the Feds keep the courthouse doors closed to you when they have effectively frozen your property? That is the question the Supreme Court of the United States considered on March 30th, when the Solicitor General, representing the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and Pacific Legal Foundation, representing Hawkes Company, squared off regarding the Corps’ decision that Hawkes Company could not use its property for peat farming without first spending hundreds of thousands of dollars in pursuit of a federal wetlands permit under the Environmental Protection Agency’s “Waters of the United States” (WOTUS) rule. Pacific Legal Foundation argues that its client should be allowed to challenge that decision, called a Jurisdictional Determination, in court; the Corps disagrees. What will the justices say? The co-counsel for the Hawkes Company who appeared before the Supreme Court discussed the case, how the oral argument went, and what we might expect to see in the Court's decision.


  • Mark Miller, Managing Attorney, Atlantic Center, Pacific Legal Foundation

Will the Clean Power Plan Stay? - Podcast

Environmental Law & Property Rights and Federalism & Separation of Powers Practice Groups Podcast
Elbert Lin March 08, 2016

Everyone has heard of the Clean Power Plan, but fewer people actually understand its contours and requirements. Most recently, on February 9, 2016, the U.S. Supreme Court stayed implementation of the rule, pending judicial review. Our expert discussed the scope and impact of the rule and the latest developments in the litigation.


  • Elbert Lin, Solicitor General, West Virginia

Federalism, the Environment, Land Use, and Energy Independence - Event Audio/Video

2016 Annual Western Chapters Conference
Anthony L. Fran├žois, Richard Frank, Donald J. Kochan, Justin Pidot, Milan D. Smith, Jennifer Perkins February 17, 2016

Some states have criticized Washington overreach on a number of energy and environmental issues, from fracking, the sale of public lands, utility regulation, and clean air and water regulation. Many state attorneys general have banded together to challenge alleged overreach in the environmental arena, including litigation against the EPA’s coal-fired power plant regulation plans. What are the proper federalism models for environmental regulation? What role should the courts and state attorneys general play? A panel of experts will discuss.

This panel was part of the 2016 Annual Western Chapters Conference at The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library in Simi Valley, CA on January 30, 2016.

Federalism, the Environment, Land Use, and Energy Independence

  • Mr. Anthony L. (Tony) François, Senior Staff Attorney, Pacific Legal Foundation
  • Prof. Richard Frank, Director, California Environmental Law and Policy Center, UC Davis School of Law
  • Prof. Donald J. Kochan, Associate Dean for Research and Faculty Development; Dale E. Fowler School of Law, Chapman University
  • Prof. Justin Pidot, Sturm College of Law, University of Denver
  • Moderator: Hon. Milan D. Smith, Jr., U.S. Court of Appeals, 9th  Circuit
  • Introduction: Ms. Jennifer Perkins, Assistant Solicitor General, AG Opinions and Ethics at Arizona Attorney General's Office

The Ronald Reagan Presidential Library
Simi Valley, CA

Sturgeon v. Frost - Post-Argument SCOTUScast

SCOTUScast 2-17-16 featuring Gale Norton
Gale Norton February 17, 2016

On January 20, 2016, the Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Sturgeon v. Frost. Sturgeon challenged a National Park Service (NPS) ban on the operation of hovercraft on the National River, part of which falls within the Yukon-Charley River National Preserve. The State of Alaska then intervened, challenging NPS’s authority to require its researchers to obtain a permit before engaging in studies of chum and sockeye salmon on the Alagnak River, part of which falls within the boundaries of the Katmai National Park and Preserve. Sturgeon and Alaska contended that the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA) precludes NPS from regulating activities on state-owned lands and navigable waters that fall within the boundaries of National Park System units in Alaska. The district court ruled in favor of the federal government, and the Ninth Circuit affirmed that judgment as to Sturgeon but ordered that Alaska’s case be dismissed for lack of standing.

The question before the Court is whether ANILCA prohibits the National Park Service from exercising regulatory control over state, native corporation, and private Alaska land physically located within the boundaries of the National Park System.

To discuss the case, we have Gale Norton, who served as the 48th U.S. Secretary of the Interior.