Events

California Coastal Commissioners Fire Executive Director Charles Lester

Personnel Dispute is Commission's Biggest Political Controversy in Over a Decade

Following months of public controversy and a marathon 10 1/2 hour hearing Wednesday in Morro Bay, a closely-divided California Coastal Commission voted to fire its Executive Director, Charles Lester.  The Commission vote to remove Lester was 7-5. Lester, who as Executive Director has led the Commission staff for the past 4 1/2 years, is the […]

Continue Reading

Public Prosecutors Zero In on SoCal Gas, Porter Ranch Disaster

Aliso Canyon

California Attorney General, L.A. District Attorney File New Enforcement Prosecutions

The massive leak from Southern California Gas Company’s Aliso Canyon natural gas field in northwestern Los Angeles County was discovered on October 23rd of last year and, more than three months later, shows no sign of abating.  Public prosecutors have pretty clearly lost patience with SoCal gas and its ineffective remediation efforts to date.  This […]

Continue Reading

Sacramento Lunch Briefing On Low-Carbon Biofuel Policies For California

Planting Fuels Cover

Free event in the State Capitol on Friday, January 22nd

As California commits itself to reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector, what role will biofuels play as a petroleum alternative? And how can California ensure that more low-carbon biofuels are produced in-state, especially given the competition from cheap oil and cheap international biofuel? State officials and biofuel producers will address these questions at […]

Continue Reading

California Supreme Court Hands Air District, Environmentalists Qualified Win

Sf_skyline_from_bay

Justices' Unanimous Opinion Addresses Key "Scope of CEQA" Issue

In a closely-watched case, the California Supreme Court today issued a unanimous decision on the scope of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), California’s most important and heavily-litigated environmental statute.  That decision is unlikely to fully satisfy either side in the litigation, though over the long-term it would seem to favor local regulators and their […]

Continue Reading

A Moveable Climate Feast?

IMG_2435

Paris and the future politics of climate change

Back in 1920s Paris, an unknown writer named Ernest Hemingway hung out in the local cafes with other aspiring artists.  It was an odd group, featuring communists like Pablo Picasso, fascists like Ezra Pound, and right-wingers like Gertrude Stein.  But they helped each other, promoting their work and ultimately producing a generation of famous artists […]

Continue Reading

We’ll Always Have Paris — Or Will We?

casablanca222

Some skepticism from an attendee about what can transpire there

Along with the UCLA Law crew of Ann, Ted, Cara, and Alex, plus six law students, I’ll be attending the UN climate change negotiations in Paris next week, primarily to highlight California’s effort to achieve a strong subnational agreement on greenhouse gas reductions. The “Under 2 MOU” is an impressive commitment by diverse subnational entities, […]

Continue Reading

Planting Biofuels in California

Planting Fuels Cover

New report on ways to boost in-state production of low-carbon biofuels, plus December 14th webinar

When we think of ways to reduce emissions from petroleum-based transportation fuels, electric vehicles get much of the headlines. Battery electric transportation certainly offers a viable, long-term alternative to petroleum fuels. But we’re still a few years away from an affordable, mass-market electric vehicle, and battery technology may be decades away, if ever, from being […]

Continue Reading

Emmett Institute updates from the Climate Conference

cop21 logo oblique

UCLA faculty and students participating in COP21/CMP11

For two weeks starting today, negotiators gather in Paris for the annual climate-change meetings – officially, the 21st Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, and the 11th Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (COP 21/CMP11). The meeting is located in a sprawling conference center at the edge […]

Continue Reading

Pope Francis Goes to Washington

Pope_Francis_at_Vargihna

What he said and didn’t say

Pope Francis arrived in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday to begin a much anticipated trip to the United States. While here, the pope will visit DC, New York City, and Philadelphia. Pope Francis, a former chemist, has gained much attention for his calls for action on climate change, in addition to his focus on inequality and […]

Continue Reading

Registration Opens for 2015 Yosemite Conference–The Nation’s Top Environmental Law Event

Yosemite brochure

This Year's Yosemite Conference Promises to Continue a Tradition of Excellence

Registration is now open for the 2015 edition of the State Bar of California’s Environmental Law Conference at Yosemite.  That conference, held each fall, is unquestionably the premier environmental law-related event in California.  I would go so far as to argue that it’s actually the top such program in the entire United States. The Yosemite Conference […]

Continue Reading