Energy Law (ERGL)

Energy Law (ERGL)

ERGL 6000  Energy Law Regulation & Policy  (3)  

This course introduces students to the general field of energy law. It begins with an overview of the global energy situation in terms of supply and demand as well as balanced projections for the coming decades both in the U.S. and abroad. It then will proceed to examine the primary sources of energy along with the multi-faceted role of electricity as the central source of secondary energy in our economy. This portion of the course will offer a survey view of how these energy sources are used and regulated from economic, reliability, and environmental perspectives. This will include an overview of legal and regulatory principles governing fossil fuel extraction and use, the coal industry, nuclear power, a range of renewable energy sources, and finally the regulation of electricity generation, transmission, and distribution. The course will conclude with a brief review of the growing role of conservation and climate change in energy markets here and to some extent abroad

ERGL 6100  Clean Air Law  (2)  

This course will expand on the materials introduced in the Environmental Law, Regulation and Policy Survey from Term 2 relative to water pollution. The focus of this course will be a comprehensive and detailed examination of the content of the federal Clear Air Act and the role of the federal Environmental Protection Agency in interpreting, applying, and enforcing the terms of this statute. But as there is also a large body of state and local regulation of air pollution, students will also be exposed to the issues addressed by this legislation and their methods of enforcement. Attention will also be given to drafting or amending emissions standards, greenhouse gas regulation, and environmental justice issues.

ERGL 6150  Clean Water Law  (2)  

This course will cover the role and influence of the legal system on the use, allocation, and steward-ship of water resources in the United States. Since the field of water resources management is rapidly evolving to accommodate storm protection, ecosystem restoration and sea level rise an understanding of the policies that underlay our current laws and the factors that are influencing current policy and lawmaking will be an important part of the course’s focus. Students will be required to participate in one group project in which they will be asked to develop, present and defend a position paper on some aspect of the water resources management challenges arising in a coastal region of the United States.

ERGL 6200  Law & Climate Change  (2)  

This course will examine legal efforts to address climate change, both at the national and international level. It will include detailed examination of the 1992 United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Kyoto Protocol and the extent to which these policies have been adopted in the U.S. at the national and local levels. Attention will also be given to non-statutory responses in the U.S. to the addressing climate change including judicial decisions that have attempted to mitigate the effects of climate change. Among the specific aspects of climate change that will be examined are coastline impact, auto emissions, greenhouse gas emissions, limitations on fossil fuel development and utilization, and human rights issues including environmental justice. Students will be asked to develop climate change policies and assess the U.S. response to the global impact of climate change.

ERGL 6400  Intro Leg Study Rsh & Writing  (2)  

This foundational course introduces students to sources and functions of law in our society relating to energy law. The course begins with an overview of the American legal system and sources of law and introduces students to statutory interpretation and plain language analysis. In Legal Analysis I, students will learn to read and interpret statutory law and regulations, read and brief cases, and develop basic legal writing and analysis skills. Students will also learn to find and research legal information through multiple short research assignments focusing on energy law issues. Through multiple short writing assignments such as a case brief, an IRAC essay analyzing a statutory issue, and an e-memo interpreting statutory & regulatory law relating to an energy law topic, students learn to apply statutes and regulations to analyze legal issues relating to energy law.

ERGL 6401  Int Leg Study Rsh & Writing II  (2)  

This course builds on Legal Analysis I to introduce students to the relationship between enacted & administrative law and common law. The course continues instruction on legal research methods in finding and analyzing cases and common law. Students learn to read and synthesize multiple cases and learn analogical and policy-based reasoning. Through multiple short writing assignments, such as an e- memo analyzing a statutory issue in the context of a litigated issue arising out of administrative enforcement action, students learn to apply statutes, regulations, administrative materials, and case law to analyze complex legal issues relating to energy law.

ERGL 6500  Natural Resources Law  (3)  

This course will expand on then materials introduced in the Environmental Law, Regulation and Policy Survey course from Term 2. It will begin by examining the definition of natural resources and then examine such issues as alternative methods of conservation, preservation, the public trust doctrine, relative merits of private ownership versus governmental regulation of common areas, fragmentation, riparianism, threatened species, and bioregionalism. Special attention will be given to the National Environmental Policy Act, the Endangered Species Act, the Forest Service Organic Act, and the property and takings clauses of the U.S. Constitution.