Environmental Law

A journal investigating issues of environment law and policy on a local, national and international level.

Articles from Vol. 26, No. 1, Spring

A Civic Republican Perspective on the National Environmental Police Act's Process for Citizen Participation
I. INTRODUCTION For the last twenty-five years, the United States has conducted a grand experiment in democracy. The administrative agencies of the executive branch of the federal government have opened their decision-making processes to unparalleled...
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A Watershed Issue: The Role of Streamflow Protection in Northwest River Basin Management
I. INTRODUCTION The recent crash of salmon, steelhead, and trout populations has drawn attention to the altered state of Northwest rivers. Columbia Basin salmon runs once numbered perhaps sixteen million fish; today, they hang by a thread.(1)...
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Changing the River's Course: Western Water Policy Reform
Water policy has left an indelible mark on America's western landscape. During the settlement and development of the West, a set of water policies evolved to create institutions and enable construction of facilities that allocate, store, distribute,...
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Drafting from an Overdrawn Account: Continuing Water Diversions from the Mainstream Columbia and Snake Rivers
I. INTRODUCTION The Columbia River System is an exhausted resource. Out-of-stream consumptive uses have drained the river to a state of crisis: in 1891 and 1992, the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) listed several species of Snake River...
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Giving Sabers to a 'Toothless Tiger': The Federal Advisory Committee Act
I. INTRODUCTION A. The Federal Advisory Committee Act The Federal Advisory Committee Act (FACA)(1) is not a mysterious piece of legislation. The legislative history is clear about the specific problems FACA addresses and FACA's text sets...
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International Negotiations Paralyzed by Domestic Politics: Two-Level Game Theory and the Problem of the Pacific Salmon Commission
I. INTRODUCTION During the summer of 1994 the fleets were deployed.(1) The press on both sides printed inflammatory stories.(2) Politicians called for armed intervention.(3) The situation continued to deteriorate in 1995.(4) To an outside observer...
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Leasing Water Rights for Instream Flow Uses: A Survey of Water Transfer Policy, Practices, and Problems in the Pacific Northwest
I. INTRODUCTION A. Purpose Water in streams, rivers, and lakes has social, economic, and environmental values that grow increasingly important as water grows more scarce. Local quality of life, cultural and historical assets, tourism dollars,...
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Of Fish, Federal Dams, and State Protections: A State's Options against the Federal Government for Dam-Related Fish Kills on the Columbia River
I. INTRODUCTION The Columbia River Basin houses two of the Pacific Northwest's greatest concerns: the Columbia River hydropower system and what "were once the world's largest salmon runs."(1) Unfortunately, the two are often in conflict. The...
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Seven Myths of Northwest Water Law and Associated Stories
In some respects, the Pacific Northwest as a region has been defined by what it is not: it is not as arid as the intermountain West.(1) But it is a mistake to think that water in the Northwest is not a scarce resource, subject to increasing demands...
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Taking and Giving: Police Power, Public Value, and Private Right
"So long as government action constitutes a taking and a giving to the same individuals in the same proportions, all is well."(1) "Property and law are born together, and die together. Before laws were made there was no property; take away laws, and...
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The Federal Advisory Committee Act: Barrier or Boon to Effective Natural Resource Management?
I. INTRODUCTION As natural resource management issues continue rising to the forefront, it is important for the government not to alienate interested parties from the decision-making process. Currently, federal agencies can do more to involve...
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The Hanford Reach: Protecting the Columbia's Last Safe Haven for Salmon
I. INTRODUCTION If salmon are to survive in the Columbia River Watershed, we must face the challenges before us with our goals clearly in mind, in heart, and in spirit. We must begin to respect, to reestablish, and to restore the balances...
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Tradable Emissions Programs: Implications under the Takings Clause
I. INTRODUCTION The Fifth Amendment of the United States Constitution provides that "private property [shall not] be taken for public use, without just compensation."(1) Supreme Court cases interpreting the Takings Clause generally fall into...
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Water Rights and the Common Wealth
Despite a century and a half of opportunity and mounting need, the dominant culture of the American West has not yet adapted to the West's defining physical feature--its aridity. Variable overall yet profound in many places, aridity marks the West...
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