Friday, December 28, 2012

Friday, December 21, 2012

Colorado First in LEED Ranking

The annual Resource Rich Colorado report was released earlier this month by the Colorado Energy Coalition. The report measures Colorado's competitive position in oil, natural gas, coal, renewable energy and sustainability. It listed Colorado first in LEED-certified building square footage per capita.

Chris Hansen, director of product management for energy at IHS and chair of the CEC's Competitive Analysis Committee said in a news release, "While many states are typically strong in either fossil fuels or renewables, Colorado is fortunate to have rich and abundant resources in both aspects, making it an energy leader in the United States and worldwide."

The study also ranks Colorado fourth in installed solar capacity, fifth in natural gas production, and ninth in installed wind capacity. "The study shows that Colorado's abundant natural resources, aggressive policies, growing energy employment, and industry leadership make it an attractive state for new and expanding energy companies," the CEC said.

You can find the executive summary of the report here, and the full report here.

Angelica Oman
Graduate Program Assistant

Friday, December 14, 2012

Changes in the Works for CO Oil and Gas Development

Oil and gas regulators, industry representatives and environmentalists met this week to discuss creating a consistent set of state regulations for oil and gas development. The Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission is the body in charge of both promoting and regulating oil and gas development. The current discussion focused on water quality standards. Proposed changes included requiring water testing before and after development in an effort to provide a baseline to hold companies accountable for pollution.

Most groundwater contamination occurs from surface spills during initial drilling; not from fracking activities. Residents near oil and gas development fear groundwater contamination because petroleum material contains benzene, which causes cancer. The new regulations would bring about more accountability, but might bring economic hardship to the state as well.

The proposed regulations are creating investment concerns. "Folks realize there's going to be a testing program," Colorado Petroleum Association President Stan Dempsey said. "It has to be done the right way. If the regulatory situation isn't as certain in Colorado as in another state, (company) investment dollars could flow to another part of the country or another part of the world."

However, oil and gas development companies will also experience benefits as residents will become more comfortable with development through the more rigorous standards. "It is a very rigorous standard," Environmental Defense Fund, Regional Director Dan Grossman said. "If you put in a robust system, you can bolster confidence of people in the state that these actions are being done responsibly."

Colorado Oil and Gas Statistics*
  • There are 49,236 active wells statewide
    • This number is up 31% since 2008 
  • ·         Weld County- 17,844 active wells
    • 40% of spills in this county have reached groundwater 
Angelica Oman
Graduate Program Assistant
*Statistics found at the Denver Post.

Friday, December 7, 2012

USFS Christmas Trees Permits Available

The Forest Service manages 193 million acres of public land. Their mission is to sustain the health, diversity and productivity of the nation's forests.These lands provide 20 percent of the nation’s clean water supply and contribute to more than $13 billion to the economy through visitor spending. The Rocky Mountain Region manages 11 national forests throughout Colorado, and an additional six areas in Nebraska and most of South Dakota and Wyoming.

Did you know that you can cut down a US Forest Service tree for Christmas? All you have to do is call the Ranger office closest to where you would like to cut and ask about getting a Christmas tree cutting permit. Areas closest to Denver charge $10 per tree with a limit of 5 trees.

It is a holiday tradition for many in the area to select a tree from the regions finest public lands. In addition to experiencing Colorado’s beautiful forests, you are actively helping to manage the national forests. The Forest Service utilizes these permits to thin smaller diameter trees from concentrated areas.

“Trees from your national forests brighten homes across the country every year,” said U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell. “We encourage people to be aware of changing weather conditions, dress accordingly and always follow safe cutting practices when looking for that perfect tree this holiday season.”

Click here for an interactive map of Colorado’s Forest Service lands.
For more information about tree cutting on USFS land, visit the USFS website.

Angelica Oman
Graduate Program Assistant 

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Featured Student: Darracott Osawe

Darracott Osawe is just finishing his first semester as a LLM student in the Environmental and Natural Resources Law and Policy Program. He just moved here from Nigeria, where he was an environmental lawyer and professor. We recently talked to him about his experience thus far in the ENRGP Program. Darracott has a very impressive future ahead of him as he plans to go back to Nigeria and share his knowledge of natural resources law, specifically oil and gas development. We hope he enjoys his last semester with us and wish him all the best in his future endeavors.

Why did you choose the University of Denver's Graduate Environmental and Natural Resources Law and Policy Program?
I decided to undertake the program basically for two reasons. First, I am a lecturer at the Faculty of Law, University of Benin, in Nigeria, where I was involved in research into various aspects of Environmental Law. Furthermore, I am the litigating counsel for Climate Change Africa (CCA), a non-governmental organization in Nigeria committed to advocating for the protection of the environment and natural resources. My friends in Nigeria recommended the University of Denver to me as a place where I can acquire the academic knowledge and training needed to succeed in this endeavor.

What do you like about the program?
I like the small size of the class which enables the professors to teach and relate with students on a personal level. I also like the crop of smart, dedicated and intelligent professors who are always willing and available to impact knowledge. Lastly, Prof. Don Smith and Lucy Daberkow are a balancing factor in the program. They are patient, understanding and always available to provide an atmosphere which would enable students get the best from the program.

What advice do you have for prospective applicants?
My advice to prospective applicant is that if they wish to acquire knowledge in a first class university outstanding and committed to teaching and research into various aspects of interesting courses like International and Comparative Mining Law, Natural Resources Law, Oil and Gas Law and Energy Law, they should think of no other university than the University of Denver.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Turkey-day and Our Environment

As we prepare to feast with family and friends and reflect on all that we are thankful for, let us be grateful for the food we eat. Let us eat our meals with awareness of what it takes for us to be able to enjoy such delicious bounty.

The resources required to produce enough turkey supply to meet demand is surprising. Nearly 105 billion gallons of water is needed, which is enough to supply New York City’s water needs for over 100 days.

Let’s consider the cost of producing turkey per pound: The resources required to produce each pound of turkey is equivalent to a car driven 11 miles and a 130 minute shower. Producing one pound of turkey meat creates 5kg of CO2 emissions and uses 520 gallons of water according to the Environmental Working Group.

The National Resources Defense Council has determined that Americans will buy 581 million pounds of turkey meat for Thanksgiving this year, but will end up throwing out more than a third of it. Turkey waste may reach $282 million which contributes to the $165 billion of uneaten food that Americans waste per year.

“It’s really shocking to think that we are wasting so much food when we could be feeding our own population," says Dana Gunders, Food and Agriculture Project Scientist at the NRDC. "We estimate that if we were to reduce food waste by 15 percent, that would be equivalent to the amount of food needed to feed 25 million Americans, those who are going hungry.”

Greely Colorado’s Water Conservation Program estimates that it takes over 40,000 gallons of water to produce the food and prepare Thanksgiving dinner for eight. They have offered a few tips to help conserve water when cooking tomorrow’s feast.

Turkey Facts: wild turkeys can run up to 25 miles per hour and their gobbles can be heard up to a mile away.

For more information and ideas to help reduce waste this Thanksgiving visit The Daily Meal.

Angelica Oman
Graduate Progam Assistant

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Collaborative Center for International Development Soon to Open in Denver

There is a trend emerging in the non-profit sector across the United States, shared office space. Many of these centers simply share a physical building and in turn resources like printing costs, accounting, and offer brown bag lunch series. Others have established into their mission, vision, and goals an ethic of collaboration and building reciprocity towards the similar good work the organizations housed in the space support. The soon to open Denver Greenhouse Project is such a space. 

Led by the vision and efforts of former Colorado State Senator Andrew Romanoff, now Senior Advisor to iDE-InternationalDevelopment Enterprises, a main tenant of the project. The Greenhouse Project will be the first example in the country of a shared office space and center for collaboration that focuses on international development and ending global poverty. Friends of ENCA Farm, the organization I founded to support organic farming preservation and environmental education in the Philippines will join 27 other fantastic organizations in this historic building located in the Curtis Park neighborhood of Denver, Colorado, set to open this coming summer. The work of the other tenants includes agriculture, education, energy, health, infrastructure, and microfinance, and as a collective the Greenhouse organizations work in over 72 countries around the globe.

Friends of ENCA Farm, is very excited about being apart of this center for innovation. Not only will it connect our work in the Philippines with wonderful partners that do similar development work around the globe. But the Greenhouse plans to offer virtual educational and training sessions that will allow our partners, farmers, and community members throughout the Philippines to access a wealth of knowledge. These trainings will benefit Philippine organic farming initiatives, environmental sustainability, and build our shared reciprocity with fellow international development organizations.

To learn more about the collaborative and how you can get involved please visit:
Sherry Manning
MRLS Graduate 2010
Founder and Executive Director Friends of ENCA Farm
About the Author:

Prior to completing her Masters in Resource Law Studies from the Sturm College of Law, Sherry Manning served as a U.S. Peace Corps Volunteer in the Philippines from 2006-2008. She is the Founder and Executive Director of Friends of ENCA Farm. To learn more about their work in the Philippines please visit

Friday, November 9, 2012

Program Alumni Speak to Students About Career Opportunities at SDSG

Environmental and Natural Resources Law and Policy alumni, Nadia Ahmad and Kristi Disney made time in their schedules to come and speak to students interested in international environmental law on Thursday November 8th.

Ms. Ahmad and Ms. Disney came with Professor Cecilia Dalupan to share the mission, projects and programs of the Sustainable Development Strategies Group (SDSG). They also highlighted internship opportunities available for students.

SDSG is a sustainable development consulting group focused on capacity building for governments, communities and practitioners. Professor Dalupan, a Principal of SDSG, spoke passionately about the increasing awareness of environmental and natural resources sustainability issues. SDSG’s projects include the Model Mine Development Agreement, a template for government leaders when making long-term mining agreements. Other projects focus on transparency initiatives, government accountability, community benefits sharing and seminars and workshops to teaching natural resource development skills.
Kristi Disney is now working as the Director of International Programs at SDSG.
Nadia Ahmad is now working as a Legal Fellow at SDSG. Ms. Ahmad stated, “The specializations offered by the ENRGP program will really give you an edge.”
We thank all three of these passionate women for taking time to speak to our students about the exciting opportunities that await them in international environmental law. The ENRGP program also wish Ms. Disney and Ms. Ahmad continued success in their future endeavors!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Boulder Voters Prioritize Environmental Concerns

President Obama was elected for a second term last night. We are looking forward to seeing what his reelection means for environmental concerns in our nation.  Most notably, the Production Tax Credit, which is set to expire at the end of this year and would have an effect many efforts in CO.
Voters in Boulder made two loud environmental declarations at the voting booths last night. Voters approved a five-year extension of the city’s Climate Action Plan tax and a twenty-year extension of its 0.25% sales tax for parks and recreation. 

The Climate Action Plan tax on energy use allows the city to continue renewable energy and energy efficiency programs. Tax revenue provides rebates, credits and energy audits for businesses and homeowners.
"It's really heartening to see that Boulderites supported it so heavily, which keeps Boulder in the forefront of the world with the actions we're taking," Boulder Mayor Matt Appelbaum said. "It allows us to continue as a model for other communities in terms of programs that are cost-effective and reduce greenhouse gas emissions and are just a good return on investment."
The Boulder Parks and Recreation tax was approved by an even higher margin. The tax was set to expire in 2015, but city officials wanted to provide for more stability in long term planning. The Parks and Recreation tax generated $7.1 million for parks are recreation in 2012 and contributes 27% of the parks department budget. The tax is now set to expire in 2035. Boulder will see continued improvement to its parks and recreation facilities.
It is exciting to see environmental issues on the ballot and even more exciting to see that the residents of Boulder put such a high value on the condition of their environment. Let's hope the trend of democratic movements toward sustainability and environmental contentiousness continues.
Angelica M. Oman
Graduate Program Assistant

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Colorado Wind-Power Industry Set to Grow Before Years End

Colorado wind power capacity is set to grow by 26% before the year ends. The American Wind Energy Association states that with current development plans, the states totally capacity for wind power will grow from 1,805 megawattts to 2,272 megawatts. This energy output would provide enough power to support 568,000 homes.
Xcel Energy opened two new wind farms on October 22nd, Limon I and Limon II. President and CEO of Xcel’s Colorado subsidiary, Public Service Co. of Colorado, David Eves said, “They offer some of the lowest-priced wind energy we’ve seen. And they demonstrate that renewable energy can compete on an economic basis with more traditional forms of generation fuel. They also help us meet the state’s Renewable Energy Standard at a very reasonable cost to our customers.”
This surge of wind powered energy generation stems from the Production Tax Credit (PTC), which is set to expire at the end of this year. Wind farm operators are in a hurry to become operational before the end of the year because they risk losing the assistance of the PTC, which pays $22 for every megawatt hour of energy generated.
President Barack Obama has said he supports extending the tax credit while Gov. Mitt Romney has said he favors letting the credit expire as scheduled. If you are interested in more information about The Election's Impact on Natural Resources Law and Policy, attend a free event by the same name taking place at DU’s College of Law on November 13th!
Angelica Oman
Graduate Program Assistant

Friday, October 26, 2012

Three Denver Law Environmental & Natural Resources Law Colleagues Meet in Papua New Guinea

Left to right Cecilia Dalupan,
Jeklin Talonu, and Kristy Disney in
Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea. 

Recently, three individuals associated with Denver Law's Environmental & Natural Resources Program met in Papua New Guinea. 

Cecilia Dalupan and Kristi Disney, of the Sustainable Development Strategies Group, met with Jeklin Talonu, Deputy State Solicitor in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea.

Ms. Dalupan is an Adjunct Professor at Denver Law where she teaches in the Sustainable Natural Resources Development Series of courses. Ms. Disney is a 2011 JD and LLM graduate of Denver Law.  Ms. Talonu is a 2008 LLM graduate of Denver Law.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

First-Time Offfering of Intercultural Competence Workshop

This year marked the first year that the Environmental and Natural Resources Law and Policy Program offered a workshop on Intercultural Competence.
All incoming international and master's degree students take an American Legal Systems class to help them prepare for the upper-level law school classes they are about to take. This is the first semester that the course included two lunch hour workshops discussing how to adapt to new and different cultures.

Communication today is characterized by an increasing amount of contacts between people with diverse linguistic and cultural backgrounds. The ENRGP 2012 class represents over a dozen countries, from Indonesia to Chile. Intercultural communication is on the rise in the classroom as well as in the business sphere.
Today's students must be adept at intercultural communication if they wish to be successful in their work. This is especially true for many of our environmental and natural resource students who will go on to work  internationally. Communication between these actors should be as constructive and precise as possible.

These workshops were taught by our very own Lucy Daberkow, (pictured above) Associate Administrative Director of the Environmental and Natural Resources Law and Policy Program, who is an expert in intercultural communication, applied linguistics, and English as a second language. She was able to engage the students through her ability to relate to the international students' experiences of adapting to life in the US. She focused her discussions on identifying levels of intercultural communication and awareness, and then outlining cultural backgrounds and motivations for differences. The workshops concluded with a discussion on how best to bridge these intercultural differences.

The lunch seminars were lighthearted and engaging. The students enjoyed the opportunity to openly discuss their cultures. They also bonded over the similar barriers they were experiencing to adapting to life in the US. The discussion of gender roles proved to be one of the most interesting for the group.

It is our hope that we can continue to offer intercultural communication seminars to our students, both  international and domestic. Our students should receive every advantage as they complete our program and we are proud to say that intercultural communication is a skill we value and would like to share.

Angelica Oman
Graduate Program Assistant

Monday, October 15, 2012

ENRL Director Don Smith Attends IBA Annual Meeting in his Role as Editor of the Journal of Energy and Natural Resources Law

Don Smith, Director of Denver Law's Environmental and Natural Resources Law and Policy Program, was recently in Dublin, Ireland, where he attended the International Bar Association's Annual Meeting.

Mr. Smith edits the Journal of Energy and Natural Resources Law for the IBA's Section on Energy, Environment, Natural Resources and Infrastructure Law (SEERIL).

While in Dublin he met with SEERIL's governing council to talk about the Journal.  He also met with Professor Aileen McHarg, who teaches at the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland, and chairs the Journal's Editorial Advisory Committee.

"Attending the Annual Meeting was a wonderful opportunity to me to commission cutting-edge articles for the Journal as well as meet the individuals from around the world whose work in the fields of energy and natural resources will have an impact on how these sectors are approached in the future," he said.  "I met with leading oil and gas, energy, and mining law practitioners from all around the globe."

He said, "There is no substitute for meeting face-to-face with these leaders.  These meetings inform my teaching and my leadership of Denver Law's Environmental and Natural Resources Law Program."


Saturday, October 13, 2012

Denver Law Hosts Second Annual Renewable Energy Law & Policy Summit on October 19, 2012; National Leaders Convene to Discuss the Current State of the Renewable Energy Sector

Denver Law will host the Second Annual Renewable Energy Law & Policy Summit on October 19, 2012, at the Sturm College of Law on the University of Denver campus.

The opening keynote address will be made by former Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter Jr, who directs the Center for the New Energy Economy at Colorado State University.  The luncheon keynote address will feature Dr. Susan Tierney, Managing Principal at the Analysis Group in Boston.

The program also includes four panels, which will address many of the most important issues being considered today in the renewable energy development community:
  • Renewable Energy and the U.S. Military
  • The Role the Media Plays in Influencing Renewable Energy Policy
  • How are Municipalities Driving the Development of Renewable Energy
  • Renewable Portfolio Standards at 10: Where Have we Been?  Where are we Going?
The summit, which will feature many of the nation's renewable energy policy and development leaders, is another example of Denver Law's leadership in the renewable energy sector. Denver Law has the most renewable energy course offerings of any U.S. law school.

Don Smith, director of Denver Law's Environmental and Natural Resources Law Program, said, "It is a great honor for Denver Law to organize this event for the second year.  Denver and Colorado are centers of excellence for renewable energy, and Denver Law takes seriously our role to convene national leaders to discuss this important energy sector.

"We are especially appreciative of our sponsors: Holland and Hart, the presenting and founding sponsor; Welborn Sullivan Meck and Tooley PC, the breakfast and morning keynote address sponsor; and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, a supporting sponsor.  Their involvement and support makes this event possible and illustrates the leadership they are providing in the renewable energy sector," Mr. Smith said.

To register for the Renewable Energy Law & Policy Summit, please click here.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

International Conference on Biodiversity

The 1992 UN Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro created the United Nations Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). This is one of three historic international agreements created at the Earth Summit. On October 8th more than 2,000 delegates from 150 countries met in Hyderabad, India for the 11th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity.

All 193 UN member governments have signed and ratified the CBD and are a party to it. The objectives of the CBD "are the conservation of biological diversity, the sustainable use of its components and the fair and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the utilization of genetic resources, including by appropriate access to genetic resources and by appropriate transfer of relevant technologies, taking into account all rights over those resources and to technologies, and by appropriate funding."

The Conference in India is set to discuss progress in the achievement of biodiversity goals as well as problems and challenges faced in the implementation of the CBD. The last conference was held in Nagoya, Japan, two years ago. The main focus rested on reducing the rate of loss of the planet's natural habitats.

The World Wildlife Fund reported that countries have failed to deliver on commitments made in Japan. "Governments can only be serious about these targets if they are prepared to invest in achieving them. We need to see richer countries helping poorer countries and all countries increasing their domestic budgets," Rolf Hogan, biodiversity policy coordinator at the WWF said.

Julia Marton-Lefevre, director general of the International Union for Conservation of Nature stated, "We need to keep the momentum going, Biodiversity loss continues and has breached safe planetary boundaries. It's time for a serious check-up on progress we've made to turn the big plan into big action."
Angelica Oman
Graduate Program Assistant

Friday, October 5, 2012

The Environmental and Natural Resources Graduate Program will be attending the Idealist Grad Fair at the University of Colorado, Denver next Monday, the 8th from 5-8PM.

Idealist has been hosting Grad School Fairs across the country. These events are free and open to the public. Graduate schools with programs in areas such as public policy, international affairs, global and public health, theology, education, social work, nonprofit management, and environmental science. On Monday, they can add Environmental and Natural Resources Law to their list featured areas.

The event is free, but Idealist is anticipating large crowds. If you are intersted in attending and learning more about our program please RSVP.

Still not sure? Here is a short video of an Idealist Grad Fair.
If you are interested, but do not live in the Denver area, can locate a fair in your area.

Angelica Oman
Graduate Program Assistant

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Presidential Debate has arrived!

President Obama and Mitt Romney will be meeting for the first of three debates scheduled. Coverage will begin at 7PM today. The debate will be 90 minutes long. DU is proud to host the event on campus. Students names were entered into a raffle and names were drawn for students to attend the event.

The campus has been going through security transformations all week. The entire area is blocked off and shut down including a portion of I25. More than 5,000 people are expected to attend DebateFest. This is a free outdoor event which will air the debate on giant screens. The event will also feature live music, family activities, tabling for organizations and a food truck rally.

“We’ve been told that since it is the first debate of the series, involving a sitting president and taking place at such a critical time for world and national affairs,” observes Chancellor Robert Coombe, “the debate at the University of Denver may be one of the highest-rated television programs in all of 2012, approaching the numbers of the Super Bowl.”

You can watch the debate live on C-SPAN's website.

Angelica Oman
Graduate Program Assistant

Monday, October 1, 2012

Graduate Program Directors Don Smith and Lucy Daberkow Welcome new students to Denver Law

Left to right: Annie Oman (MRLS student from US),
Professor Justin Pidot, Lucy Daberkow,
Sergio Sanz (LLM student from Mexico)

Left to right: Iman and Taim (wife and son of MRLS student Ayman from
Saudi Arabia), Lucy Daberkow and daughters,
Victoria Okweze (LLM student from
Nigeria), Isabel and Santi (wife and son of LLM student Matias from Chile)

Environmental and Natural Resources Law Graduate Program Directors Don Smith and Lucy Daberkow recently hosted a get together for all the new and continuing students in the Environmental and Natural Resources Law and Policy program.  Students from Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Iraq, Mexico, Nigeria, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Taiwan, and the US were in attendance.   The students enjoyed an evening of fun and conversation and had the opportunity to interact with several of their professors: Adjunct Prof. Bill Brady, Adjuct Prof. Ken Jones, Prof. Kevin Lynch, Prof. Justin Pidot, and Adjunct Prof. Andy Reid.

Several languages could be heard throughout the evening, reminding us of the wonderful diversity in our program.

"The purpose of these events is to provide an opportunity to make our students feel at home and allow them to connect with other students and professors, many of whom will undoubtedly become lifelong friends.  We are proud of our diversity at Denver Law, and we work each and every day to foster the inclusive links and professional and personal bonds that are the basis of respect and success in our modern world," Ms. Daberkow and Mr. Smith said.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Paula A. Campos Named as Denver Law's 2013 Distinguished Natural Resources Practitioner in Residence; Will Teach Spring 2013 Course

Pamela A. Campos, senior attorney for the Environmental Defense Fund, has been named the Denver Law 2013 Distinguished Natural Resources Practitioner in Residence.  

The announcement was made by Professor Jan Laitos, the John A. Carver Jr. Professor at Denver Law.

The Distinguished Natural Resources Practitioner in Residence Seminar is a "capstone seminar" taught each year by a prominent natural resources or environmental law lawyer who has extensive experience in energy, resources, or environmental law work. The focus of the seminar is on skills training, where the skills taught are those that all lawyers need in order to have a successful career in the practice of law.

At the Environmental Defense Fund Ms. Campos handles litigation, regulatory, and policy matters on climate and air quality issues. She is responsible for cases in U.S. federal courts, the courts of the United Kingdom and the European Union, and state public utility commissions.

Before joining EDF Ms. Campos was deputy legal counsel to former Colorado Gov. Bill Ritter Jr.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Francisco Corona, Denver Law LLM in Environmental and Natural Resources Law Graduate and Santiago, Chile, Attorney, Meets With Don Smith

Francisco Corona, a 2003 LLM in Environmental and Natural Resources Law Graduate and attorney in Santiago, Chile, recently met with Don Smith, director of Denver Law's Environmental and Natural Resources Law Graduate Program. 

Mr. Corona is a natural resources law attorney for Carey y Cia, one of the leading law firms in South America. He also serves as an Assistant Professor of Mining Law at the University of Chile School of Law in Santiago.

Mr. Smith said, "It is always a great pleasure, as I travel around the world, to meet with Denver Law LLM graduates. Francisco's practice in Santiago reflects his expertise in the mining field. All of us in Denver wish him much good luck (buena suerte) in his career!" 

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Denver Law Environmental Clinic Student to Argue Before U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals

Jenni Barnes, a third year law student in the Environmental Law Clinic at Denver Law, will argue before the U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals at a special session of the court to be held in Boulder at 9 am on Thursday. The Court will be sitting at the University of Colorado School of Law.

The case involves a 2007 decision by the National Park Service regarding the management of Rocky Mountain National Park. The Park has an excess of elk, which have degraded the quality of willow and aspen habitat from overgrazing.

The Park Service decided to use "volunteer" sharpshooters to "cull" elk in the Park for the next 20 years. The Environmental Law Clinic's client, WildEarth Guardians, has challenged this decision on the grounds that the government should have considered reintroducing wolves into the Park to restore the natural elk-predator balance. In addition, the Appellant argues that the use of volunteer hunters to cull the elk population violates the Congressional ban on hunting in the Park.

DU Law community members are welcome to attend the 10th Circuit oral arguments. The CU organizers suggest that attendees get there early to ensure that they get through security and get a seat. They also suggest that attendees park in lot 308 for $8 cash/person.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Denver Law Students Elisabeth Hutchinson and Robert N. Miller II win Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation Scholarships

Two Denver Law JD students have won scholarships from the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation (RMMLF), one of the leading professional natural resources organizations of its kind.

Elisabeth A. Hutchinson was awarded two scholarships from the RMMLF, the Joe Rudd Scholarship as well as a RMMLF Scholarship, Robert N. Miller II was awarded a RMMLF Scholarship. The RMMLF Scholarship program is an especially significant one since the Foundation includes the best natural resources practitioners from the U.S. and Canada as well as from all around the world.

Don Smith, Director of Denver Law's Environmental and Natural Resources Law Program said, "Few scholarships in the natural resources field are as prestigious as those awarded by the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation.  For that reason, we are particularly proud of Ms. Hutchinson and Mr. Miller's recognition."

Scholarships awarded by the RMMLF support well-qualified law students who have the potential  to make significant contributions to scholarship in natural resources law.  The Rudd Scholarship Program was established in 1980 in honor of Joe Rudd, a prominent natural resources attorney in Alaska. The RMMLF Scholarships were established in 1993.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Our Program's First Ever Annual Report

2011-2012 Environmental and
Natural Resources Law
Annual Report

Denver Law's Environmental and Natural Resources Law Program has published its first ever Annual Report.  The publication provides a comprehensive look at the most important developments and achievements during the 2011-2012 academic year.

Among the report's contents include an overview of the new JD certificate program that recognizes JD students who specialize in environmental and natural resources law, faculty scholarship highlights, coverage of major events, a description about how experiential learning plays a major role in the program, the publications associated with the program, and an overview of the Ricketson Law Building, one of the greenest and finest buildings of its kind in the nation.

Don Smith, Director of the Environmental and Natural Resources Law Program, said, "The publication of the Annual Report is a milestone in the history of this great program.  It showcases the many important achievements that are taking place at Denver Law as well as highlights the work of our outstanding full-time faculty members and adjunct professors.
The Annual Report clearly illustrates why Denver Law is in the upper echelon of law schools when it comes to the study of environmental and natural resources law."

To see an electronic version of the report, please click here.

New Studies Prove Wind Could Satisfy the World's Energy Needs

Mark Jacobson of Stanford University and Cristina Archer of the University of Delaware performed a study using computer models to predict the potential power generated by wind energy. The study found that about 400 million wind turbines at a height of 300 feet would provide energy for over half of the world's totally energy demands. Jacobs and Archer call for wind turbines on land as well as on water and especially advocate their use in high wind areas. These areas include: the Gobi Desert, the American Great Plains and the Sahara Desert.

The available wind resources are much larger than that needed to supply the world's power. This renewable resource could easily satisfy the global human energy demand." As stated in the study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

However, the study did not take a look at outside factors such as societal or economic concerns. "Wind is unaffordable, unreliable and uncompetitive without subsidies," says David Kreutzer, a research fellow with the Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank. "Even at a small scale, wind costs more than getting electricity from a conventional source."

The National Resource Defense Council has addressed these concerns in two recent studies: American Wind Farms and At Wind Speed. They stress the value of wind energy as a renewable energy that doesn't pollute the air. The studies also demonstrate the economic value of wind energy. The wind energy market has added new sources of revenue for landowners, cities and towns.

The Production Tax Credit has been indispensable in creating a market for wind energy in the US, creating 75,000 jobs. The Production Tax Credit is set to expire at the end of the year with the American Wind Energy Association predicting at least 37,000 Americans will lose their jobs if it is not renewed.

Wind has the potential to help meet our energy needs and provide US citizens and residents with job opportunities. It is important that we continue to find ways of implementing the use of wind energy. Congress must continue to provide incentives for renewable energy sources to enable them to compete with the heavily subsidized fossil fuel industry. 

Angelica Oman
Graduate Program Assistant