Green New Deal News

Environmental Law

A certain sector of the U.S. population, i.e. essentially everyone in the lower-upper class and below, is at the mercy of the legal system and the insurance industry. The truth is that many of the changes that will come to American society because of the ongoing climate crisis will depend on court decisions on cases pitting individuals or citizen advocacy groups versus corporations or local governments.





Attorneys and law firms specializing in environmental law are certainly well aware that the turn of the calendar into the 2020s means two things for their profession: Lots of earnings and the ability to make a major difference – one way or the other – in U.S. environmental policy going forward.

This somewhat disproportionate power held by government attorneys and private lawyers is due to the fragmentation of the legal system among the Congress, federal government regulators, state governments and local councils. For the past 50+ years, Congress has passed a number of environmental statues and the Supreme Court has heard a handful of cases on environmental issues. Regulations and/or modifications to these may be made by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Secretary/Department of the Interior and/or the US Army Corps of Engineers. Such regulations may be made more stringent – but not loosened – by state and even local governments.

International courts of law can also expect an increase in environment-related cases in the near future. In a post neoliberal world, inequalities between nations involved in intrastate trade are becoming more evident and thus ripe for lawsuits. International legal firms have already dealt in cases involving biodiversity, ozone depletion, preservation of the Antarctic, toxic/hazardous substance removal, vehicular pollution and dumping, conservation of marine areas, trans-boundary pollution, desertification and nuclear damage. Such can only continue.

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