Climate change is widely considered the defining environmental law and policy challenge of the 21st century and one of its most dynamic. The development of climate change law and policy is not only moving at breakneck speed, but is occurring at multiple scales – global, national, state, local –and in multiple venues (international treaty negotiations, U.S. courts, Congress, statehouses and municipalities) simultaneously. For example, in December, 192 nations will convene in
This class will introduce students to the legal response to global climate change, from the international response to the domestic and including the interactions and relationships between the multiple scales and institutions involved in climate change regulation. A particular focus will be the scale at which a mitigation or adaptation response is being initiated and the impact of regulation at one scale (e.g., the domestic state level) upon regulation at another scale (e.g., the national scale). Another focus will be upon the method of regulation chosen with a particular emphasis upon “cap and trade”, the advantages, perils and pitfalls of trading regimes and the particular challenges posed by the linking of multiple trading regimes at the domestic and global levels.
Topics will include an overview of the causes and effects of global climate change and the methods available to control and adapt to it. We will then turn to the negotiation, implementation and current status of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Kyoto Protocol and the December 2009
Finally, the course will attempt to take advantage of the many experts on climate change at the University of Arizona and elsewhere by scheduling guest lectures as well as guest appearances through web-based videolinks.
Readings will consist of cases and articles posted on the class on-line forum.
Lecture and discussion.
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Students' final grade will be based upon their completion of short writing assignments during the semester and either a final written exam or a research paper. Students' final grade will also reflect student class participation.
Credits: 2 (3 if the student uses the course to fulfill his/her substantial paper requirement).