USD School of Law Hosts First Annual Climate and Energy Law Symposium

San Diego February 20, 2009 – The University of San Diego (USD) School of Law presents the First Annual Climate and Energy Law Symposium on February 20, 2009. The event will bring together academic and policy experts from around the country to discuss California's developing greenhouse gas regulations and how they may be affected by federal legislation in this area. Articles presented at the symposium will be published in the inaugural issue of school’s newest legal journal - the San Diego Journal of Climate and Energy Law, the first of its kind in the nation.

“The symposium will be a great opportunity for attorneys practicing in areas related to climate change and sustainability to learn more about how federal changes may affect their practice here in California,” said USD School of Law Dean Kevin Cole. “Given the importance of this issue in California and around the nation, we are pleased that our event and new journal will help to advance the broader legal and policy discussion on climate related issues.”

The symposium will include a keynote addresses from Mary Nichols, Chairman of the California Air Resources Board, who will provide an update on California’s activity to regulate greenhouse gases and the implications of federal action in this area.

“State governments, most notably California, have taken the lead in developing climate change law and policy in the United States,” Lesley McAllister, assistant professor of law, University of San Diego School of Law. “Yet all this activity is occurring in the shadow of existing and future federal law that could be determined to preempt it. This raises many questions about the role of states to regulate greenhouse gases.”

Among the broad questions that will be addressed at the symposium include: what is the significance of state and regional efforts given the likelihood of national climate policy? Which aspects of climate policy are best administered at the state level, and which require the coordination capacity of the federal government? Until federal policy is in place, how should the federal government respond to state and regional efforts?

To help work through these challenging questions, symposium organizers have assembled a line-up of legal academic experts, including Richard Lazarus from the Georgetown Law Center, Daniel Farber from the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law, and Lesley McAllister and John Minan from the University of San Diego School of Law.Representatives from state and federal agencies that work in this area will also be on hand, including Matt Bogoshian, deputy secretary for Law Enforcement and Counsel at the California Environmental Protection Agency, Clifford Rechtschaffen, special assistant to California’s attorney general, and Lorie Schmidt, senior counsel with the U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce

The event will take place at USD’s School of Leadership and Education Sciences (Mother Rosalie Hill Hall) in the Warren Auditorium. The University of San Diego School of Law is a State Board of California-approved MCLE provider, and certifies that this activity is approved for MCLE credit in the amount of 6.5 hours of general credit.

To learn more about the event and to register, please see the Symposium Web site.

About the Energy Policy Initiatives Center (EPIC)

EPIC is an academic and research center of the University of San Diego School of Law that studies how energy policy issues affect the San Diego County region and California. EPIC integrates research and analysis, law school study and public education, and provides legal and policy expertise and information about efficient and environmentally responsible solutions to our future energy needs.

About USD School of Law

The University of San Diego School of Law is a center of academic excellence focused on preparing its students for legal practice in the new century. One of the most selective law schools in the country, the School of Law’s nationally recognized faculty create a demanding, yet welcoming environment that emphasizes individualized education. USD law school graduates consistently score higher than the state average on the California Bar Exam and go on to practice law throughout the country and abroad, forming an influential network of alumni. The USD School of Law is one of only 81 law schools in the country to have a chapter of the Order of the Coif, the most distinguished rank of American law schools. The school is accredited by the American Bar Association and is a member of the Association of American Law Schools. Founded in 1954, the law school is part of the University of San Diego, a private, nonprofit, independent, Roman Catholic university chartered in 1949.


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