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Teaching law students is an enormous privilege and an immense responsibility. Teaching Environmental Law, in particular, gives the professor an opportunity to help future lawyers understand some important lessons. First, contrary to the belief of many first-year law students, the legal system is not made up entirely of courts. It’s not all judicial and it’s not all adversarial. The statutes Congress creates need implementation and that’s the role of agencies. Lawyers can do a world of good by working in and around legislatures and agencies and with the people who staff them. Environmental lawyers can help shape legislation, the resulting regulations, and the agencies that implement them, if they understand how they work. Environmental law, and all law really, is a complex mesh of politics, policy, and economic tensions. Students will do well to pay close attention to each of those as they learn to navigate the world of law practice. Problem-solving is hard in this context. It’s hard even to prioritize problems, let alone solutions. Still, it’s worth it. And you get to be their guide. Enjoy the ride responsibly.
environmental justice, Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA), Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act
Environmental Law | Law | Legal Writing and Research
Robertson, Heidi Gorovitz, "Strategies and Techniques for Teaching Environmental Law" (2021). Law Faculty Books. 59.