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