Can Citizens Better Use the Ballot Initiative to Protect Wildlife?: The Case of the Mountain Lion in the West

I. Introduction In January 2012, California Fish & Game Commission President Daniel W. Richards killed a mountain lion[2] on a hunt in Idaho.[3] A photograph of Richards holding the carcass surfaced on the Internet soon after.[4] While he broke no Idaho law, citizens flooded the California Department of Fish & Game (“CDFG”) office with complaints,[5] and some called for his resignation.[6] Richards defiantly refused to resign, and seven months later, the board elected a new president.[7] In Richards’s home state, voters outlawed mountain lion hunting Continue reading →

Shark Finning: A Ban to Change the Tide of Extinction

I. Introduction Shark finning is the practice of catching a shark, cutting off one or more of its fins, and throwing the rest of the body back into the ocean—often alive.[2] This practice is controversial because it is wasteful, inhumane, and hazardous to the environment. The United States has responded to this controversy with a series of federal laws aimed at prohibiting domestic shark finning and by taking part in international agreements to conserve sharks. A few states have taken shark conservation into their own Continue reading →

The Rising Tide of Environmental Migrants: Our National Responsibilities

I. Introduction Global climate change is slowly yet significantly altering our planet. In China, the Gobi Desert is growing by 4,000 square miles every year.[2] This invasive desert is encroaching upon 4,000 villages in the Gansu province where residents face the risk of having to abandon their villages.[3] In Iran, 124 villages in the eastern provinces of Baluchistan and Sistan have been buried by drifting sand, and eighty-eight villages have become ghost towns in the area of Damavand due to lack of water.[4] In Nigeria, Continue reading →

Speech: Ensuring Reliability and a Fair Energy Marketplace

[1]*Abstract In response to the Western Energy Crisis, the Enron scandal, and a historic East Coast blackout, Congress granted broad new authority to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC” or “the Commission”) in 2005. Armed with this enforcement authority and additional analytical resources, FERC has in recent years engaged in high-profile enforcement efforts intended to bolster both energy availability and confidence in a fair marketplace. Adapted from a speech given to the University of Colorado Law School, the following Article provides the thoughts of FERC Continue reading →

Horizontal Drilling and Trespass: A Challenge to the Norms of Property and Tort Law

I. Introduction This Article explores the interplay or interphase between common law property and tort concepts as they apply to surface and subsurface trespass claims and the technological developments in horizontal drilling techniques that are in widespread use in the various shale plays throughout the United States. As used in this Article, the term trespass relates to the unauthorized or unprivileged entry into or onto an interest in real property owned by another.[2] It is one of several different causes of action that may be Continue reading →

Examining the Priorities of the Canadian Chairmanship of the Arctic Council: Current Obstacles in International Law, Policy, and Governance

I. Introduction At the Arctic Council’s Ministerial Meeting in May 2013, Carl Bildt, the Swedish Minister for Foreign Affairs, passed the gavel, and hence the rotating chairmanship, to Canada’s Minister for the Arctic Council, to Leona Aglukkaq.[2] Canada’s main priorities have been made resoundingly clear: “development for the people of the North.”[3] The Arctic is a region increasingly acknowledged as being rich in many resources.[4] This Article, however, will focus on the pertinent issue of development by the offshore oil industry. Indigenous communities still heavily Continue reading →