ENVIRONMENTAL LAW RESEARCH GUIDE
Environmental law includes many specialized areas including agriculture, air quality, water pollution, solid & hazardous wastes, toxic substances, noise, fish & wildlife, land use, energy production & mineral extraction, and international aspects of environmental protection.
Environmental law is heavily regulated and most environmental litigation involves disputes with government agencies instead of between private parties. Therefore, in order to do legal research on environmental law, it's important to understand administrative law and determine what specific state and federal agencies are involved. For your convenience, the Moakley Law Library has guides on Federal & Massachusetts administrative law.
Moakley Law Library Catalog
The following two research databases may be particularly useful for environmental law research: The Environment Reporter - Current Reports & The Environmental Law Reporter. For Massachusetts environmental law research, The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection decisions and regulations can be accessed via the Social Law Library Database.
Environmental law : examples & explanations / Steven Ferrey
Beyond environmental law : policy proposals for a better environmental future / edited by Alyson C. Flournoy, David M. Driesen, Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press, 2010 (LAW TREATISES (FL 5), KF3775 .B435 2010)
Environmental law in a nutshell /Roger W. Findley, Daniel A. Farber
Environmental litigation: law and strategy / Cary R. Perlman, editor
Understanding environmental law / Philip Weinberg, Kevin A. Reilly
Current critical issues in environmental law: green buildings and sustainable development / by Mark J. Bennett, J. Cullen Howe, James L. Newman
Environmental law, policy, and economics: reclaiming the environmental agenda [electronic resource] / Nicholas A. Ashford, Charles C. Caldart
Energy management /Commerce Clearing House, Other Title(s) Federal energy Guidelines, Chicago [1973-] (LAW TREATISES (FL 5), KF 2120. A6 C64)
Environment reporter /Bureau of National Affairs, Washington, DC, 1970
Massachusetts environmental law / editor, Gregor I. McGregor ; authors, R. Lisle Baker ... [et al.] Boston, MA : Massachusetts Continuing Legal Education, c2006-
Remaking Boston : An environmental history of the city and its surroundings / edited by Anthony N. Penna and Conrad Edick Wright, Pittsburgh, Pa. : University of Pittsburgh Press, 2009 (Sawyer Library GE155.M4 R46 2009)
Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection
Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy & Environmental Affairs
Environmental League of Massachusetts
The global environment: institutions, law, and policy / edited by Regina S. Axelrod, Stacy D. VanDeveer, David Leonard Downie, Washington, DC : CQ Press, 2011
The art and craft of international environmental law / Daniel Bodansky Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 2010, (LAW TREATISES (FL 5) K3585 .B63 2010)
International environmental law and policy / by David Hunter, et. al.,
The Oxford handbook of international environmental law / ed. by Jutta Brunnée, et.al., Other Title(s) Handbook of international environmental law Oxford, [England]: Oxford Univ. Press, 2007, (LAW TREATISES (FL 5), K3585 .O94 2007)
International environmental law in a nutshell / by Lakshman D. Guruswamy, et. al.,
For a complete list of all the executive departments and the independent agencies and establishments, go here.
Council on Environmental Quality
U.S. Department of Agriculture
U.S. Department of Energy
U.S. Department of the Interior - Bureau of Land Management
U.S. Department of the Interior - Fish & Wildlife Service
U.S. Department of Justice - Environment & Natural Resources Division
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration
U.S. Senate: Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition & Forestry
U.S. Senate: Energy & Natural Resources Committee
U.S. Senate: Committee on Environment & Public Works
Vermont Law School, Environmental Law Resources, http://forms.vermontlaw.edu/library/resource-directory/
Lewis & Clark Law School, Environmental & Natural Resources Law
Georgetown Law Library, Resources Related to Environmental Law
Links to Massachusetts and Federal statutes and regulations are to free sources of law. These sources may not be updated frequently and are unannotated.
To find Massachusetts cases that deal with environmental law, search Massachusetts cases on Westlaw or Lexis, or you can also access them via the Social Law Library Database
The Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (MDEP) has created a table of primary state statutes and regulations that are implemented by the agencies that make up the Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy & Environmental Affairs. The table includes direct links to free full-text versions of regulations and statutes when available. MDEP Matrix of Environmental Laws & Regulations.
You can also access Massachusetts Statutes & Regulations via Westlaw, Lexis, or the Social Law Library Database. Massachusetts statutes are available for free via The Massachusetts General Court -- which is the official Massachusetts legislative site.
You will also find decisions of the MDEP dating back to 1984 - current via the Social Law Library Database
You can also access MDEP decisions via Westlaw & Lexis. For more details on how to search on Westlaw & Lexis, see a Reference Librarian.
While environmental law litigation often involves administrative law and agency decisions, there is an enormous amount of federal caselaw that addresses environmental law issues. A good way to find cases on your specific topic is to do a terms and connectors search on Westlaw or Lexis.
If you find one or two cases on point be sure to Keycite or Shepardize them to find additional cases and secondary materials that are on point.
BNA's Environment Reporter Online database is also a great way to find recent cases that tackle environmental law issues. This database allows you to find cases based on topic (i.e., Superfund, energy, climate change, etc.). You can also do a keyword search, browse the index, browse cases alphabetically by name, or browse recent state & federal cases.
The Environmental Law Reporter is another great online database for searching cases, daily federal administrative developments, as well as state and international developments. You can also search for recent state and federal cases.
The Environmental Forum recently published a list of some of the most influential cases in environmental jurisprudence. See Volume 26, Number 6, November/December 2009, James Salzman & J.B. Ruhl, Who's Number One? Here are some of the landmark cases listed in the article:
Chevron v. Natural Resources Defense Council, 467 US 837 (1984)
Title 7, Agriculture
Title 16, Conservation
Title 21, Food & Drugs
Title 30, Mineral Lands & Mining
Title 33, Navigation & Navigable Waters
Title 42, The Public Health & Welfare
Title 43, Public Lands
The United States Code (USC) is available via Westlaw & Lexis and for free via FDsys.
Title 7, Agriculture
Title 9, Animals & Animal Products
Title 10, Energy
Title 18, Conservation of Power and Water Resources
Title 21, Food & Drugs
Title 30, Mineral Resources
Title 33, Navigation & Navigable Waters
Title 36, Parks, Forests & Public Property
Title 40, Protection of the Environment
Title 43, Public Lands: Interior
Title 50, Wildlife & Fisheries
The CFR is available via Westlaw & Lexis and for free via FDsys.
EPA, Office of Administrative Law Judges
EPA, Environmental Appeals Board Decisions
You can also access EPA administrative decisions via Westlaw & Lexis. For more details on how to search on Westlaw & Lexis, see a Reference Librarian.
*Note: Westlaw and Lexis are subscription databases with limited availability. Other databases or resources may only be available to members of the Suffolk community or from computers at the Law Library.
If you have questions or comments, please email: Diane D'Angelo, Reference Librarian.
Created: August 30, 2010
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