Land Use

What is the role of CEQA in California’s housing crisis?

Ongoing research suggests that CEQA is more a symptom than the cause of the problem.

This blog post was authored by Moira O’Neill, Giulia Gualco-Nelson, and Eric Biber. Discussions about what laws and regulations might drive up housing costs continue in California. One reoccurring theme in the media is the question of whether the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) significantly contributes to the housing crisis in California by either driving […]

Continue Reading

A Loss for Trump — and for Coal

Trump Administration Loses Yet Another Environmental Case

Understandably, most of the attention at the beginning of the week was devoted to the rollout of the Trump Administration’s token effort to regulate greenhouse gases, the ACE rule. But something else happened, too. On Tuesday, a D.C. Circuit ruling ignored objections from the Trump Administration and invalidated key parts of a rule dealing with […]

Continue Reading

Secretary Zinke Misleads the Public About Wildfires and Federal Public Land Management

Secretary of Interior’s Op-Ed Ignores Science and Land-Use Planning to Falsely Blame Wildfire Risk on “Radical Environmentalists”

Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke published an op-ed today calling for “active management” of our federal public lands to reduce wildfire risk, and blaming “radical environmentalists who would rather see forests and communities burn than see a logger in the woods” for the prevalance and lethality of wildfires in the American West.  Zinke’s op-ed is disingenuous, […]

Continue Reading

SB 827 (To Boost Homes Near Transit) Killed In Committee

Setback reveals tough politics behind restrictive housing policies & potentially guides new path forward

Yesterday afternoon, SB 827 (Wiener) was killed in its first committee. Though a number of legislators acknowledged California’s severe housing shortage, few were willing to risk the political backlash of taking on the local government lobby. The bill needed 7 votes on the 13-member Senate Transportation and Housing Committee but only got 4. Here were […]

Continue Reading

SB 827 and the Concept of Deregulation

When land-use deregulation gets characterized as regulation, and why

Perhaps the biggest topic in land-use law and housing affordability in California over the past couple of months has been a piece of legislation introduced by State Senator Wiener, SB 827.  Ethan has blogged quite a bit about the bill – the basic concept of the legislation is to eliminate or significantly restrict a number […]

Continue Reading

Register Now: Toward Zero-Emission Freight At Southern California’s Ports

Free daylong conference at UCLA on Friday, June 8th will examine the prospects, pitfalls & policy needs

The Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach bring more goods into the U.S. than any other ports in the country. Yet together the ports are the single largest source of air pollution in Southern California. Harbor commissioners have adopted an ambitious plan to transition to cleaner fuels for goods movement in and around the […]

Continue Reading

The Whittling Of SB 827 Begins

First Significant Amendments Released to Landmark Bill That Would Allow More Homes Near Transit

California State Senator Scott Wiener’s SB 827, which would relax local restrictions on housing adjacent to transit, is a revolutionary step in the history of California land use. The initial version of the bill was clearly an opening salvo, reflecting a general statewide principle that locals should no longer squash housing in prime transit areas, […]

Continue Reading

Achieving Sustainable Freight in California — Free Webinar On Law & Policy Solutions

Berkeley Law event on Thursday, March 29, 10-11am will feature new report from a recent symposium

California’s freight system contributes to one-third of the state’s economy. But it is also responsible for some of its most significant emissions challenges, including toxic air pollution and greenhouse gases. To discuss solutions, the Center for Law, Energy & the Environment (CLEE) at UC Berkeley Law is hosting a free webinar this Thursday at 10am […]

Continue Reading

Sand Trap

You can add sand to your list of global environmental crises.

You already know about the climate crisis,  fisheries collapse, ocean acidification, and the biodiversity crisis.  Now you can add a fifth one: the global sand crisis. The demand for sand is exploding due to burgeoning construction in China and other developing countries. The result: water bodies are being devastated by massive dredging operations. Lake Poyang […]

Continue Reading

Contentious California Beach Access Case Heads to U.S. Supreme Court

Longstanding Martins Beach Controversy May Well Capture Justices’ Attention

The U.S. Supreme Court’s 2018-19 Term is already shaping up as a big one for environmental law in general and the longstanding tension between private property rights and environmental regulation in particular.  The Court has already agreed to hear and decide two cases next Term raising the latter set of issues: one involves the question […]

Continue Reading