Santa Clara Law Center for Global Law and Policy Fall 2019 Newsletter


Fall 2019 Newsletter

Director’s Message

Dear Friends of CGLP,

I am excited to take on the role as Director of the Center for Global Law & Policy this academic year. The Center is thriving thanks to the great efforts of outgoing Center Director Professor Donald Polden and the tireless work of our wonderful Senior Program Manager Carly Koebel. Their leadership of CGLP has been crucial to ensuring that the summer study abroad programs and the other parts of the Center have run like clockwork and provided valuable educational and professional growth experiences for hundreds of Santa Clara law students and law students from other institutions over the years. Even though Don is formally stepping down from his role as Center director, he will continue to remain involved in Center activities, especially to help with my transition in the director position, and in the summer programs. I am grateful for his continued efforts and support as well as that of all the other faculty directors leading the various summer programs and Dean Anna Han for her long-standing support for CGLP.

Many of you are familiar with my background. But for those who are not, I have been engaged in international teaching, program leadership, and research for much of my academic career. In addition to having directed and taught in CGLP’s Singapore study-abroad program on “Business and the Environment,” I have previously served as a Fulbright Scholar at Tsinghua University Law School in Beijing and as a Visiting Professor at Zhongshan University Law School in Guangzhou. Prior to coming to Santa Clara Law School, I also led a USAID and State Department-funded capacity-building and environmental law training program in China. My research and writing focuses on international and comparative environmental law issues.

Thanks to the amazing work of Don and Carly, the Center has concluded yet another successful set of summer program. Our Center Newsletter here showcases those programs as well as the international activities and accomplishments of our faculty and students and the success of the law school’s international programs. As Don has said previously, something that continues to be true, “Santa Clara Law continues to have one of the most ‘internationally-focused’ law faculties in the United States.”

I look forward to continuing the successful work of CGLP. And if there are new ideas that you think would be worth exploring for CGLP, please feel free to share them with me.

Tseming Yang
Professor of Law
Director, Center for Global Law and Policy

Summer Abroad Map2019 Summer Abroad Programs

Costa Rica 2019 – Francisco Rivera

¡Pura Vida! This Costa Rican slang term perfectly describes the three amazing weeks our 16 students had studying international human rights law in Costa Rica this summer. In addition to learning about the human rights norms, bodies, and mechanisms within the United Nations and the Organization of American States, students also explored the natural beauty Costa Rica has to offer. Read more.

Geneva 2019 – Francisco Rivera

Maybe it was getting to see in person so many U.N. agencies and international organizations; maybe it was the variety of international law topics covered in class, or maybe it was the majestic beauty of the lakes and mountains of Switzerland. Most likely, what made the Geneva summer abroad program a success was the combination of all of the above – and the delicious Swiss Mövenpick ice cream! Read more.

The Hague 2019 – David Sloss

We had another successful program in The Hague in 2019. Eighteen students from a total of seven U.S. law schools attended the program. The students were all very enthusiastic about the program. They learned a lot about international law and institutions and had a good time in the process. Read more.

Oxford 2019 – Cathy Sandoval

The 2019 Oxford program had another successful summer. Law students from Santa Clara, Golden Gate, Lewis & Clark, and Syracuse universities gathered at Oxford for the Santa Clara University School of Law Oxford University Summer Program from June through the end of July. Through one-on-one Oxford-style tutorials, students studied and prepared weekly papers on either Jurisprudence, Comparative Property law, International Criminal Law, or Energy and Environmental Law. Read more.

Shanghai 2019 – Anna Han

This past summer, Shanghai welcomed 11 enthusiastic law students who studied Chinese Law for 3 weeks at KoGuan Law School, Shanghai Jiao Tong University, in the heart of this vibrant city. The students learned about doing business in China and the myriad of laws and regulations that apply. After the classes ended, several went on to externships in law firms and courts in cities as diverse as Beijing, Hong Kong, and Taipei. Read more.

Sydney 2019 – Evangeline Abriel

Protection of Australia’s 40,000 year old aboriginal wall art and delicate flora and fauna; exploration of the way the United States, Australia, and the international community respond to refugee and humanitarian crises; tea with an Australian Federal Circuit Court judge — coupled with the Blue Mountains, wombats, and a cruise on a 1900s gentleman’s schooner in Sydney Harbour – what an amazing 2019 Sydney program! Read more.

Tokyo 2019 – Philip Jimenez

During the summer of 2019, twenty law students from across the country, from Maine to California to Hawaii, attended Santa Clara Law’s program in Tokyo. Designed to prepare law students for an international practice, the program includes classes introducing them to the Japanese legal culture, international trade law, protection of intellectual property, and transnational contracts and financing. Once classes have finished, students may choose to serve four or five week externships at law firms in Tokyo, in Seoul, South Korea, or in UlaanBaatar, Mongolia. Read more.

Vienna 2019 – Donald Polden

The Santa Clara summer 2019 program in Vienna provided an excellent opportunity for the students to learn European law and the law of the European Union, while studying in one of Europe’s most beautiful and vibrant cities. More than a dozen students attended the program and then about half of them went to externships placements in Budapest, Kuwait, and Casablanca. Three of the students were from Santa Clara University Law School and the rest came from law schools on the East and West coasts. Read more.

Some photos were winners of this year’s #SCULawAbroad photo contest. Check out our Facebook page to see more photos and videos. (

International Human Rights Clinic

In the 2018-19 academic year, students in the International Human Rights Clinic worked on the following projects:

  • A report to the U.N. Human Rights Committee highlighting human rights violations that stem from (1) the Trump Administration’s “zero tolerance” policy of forced separation and prolonged detention of immigrant children detained at the southern border, and (2) forced labor and inadequate health services in private for-profit immigration detention centers. The U.N. Human Rights Committee incorporated the clinic’s concerns in the list of issues the Committee will address in an upcoming hearing regarding the U.S.
  • A report to the U.N. Committee Against Torture alleging that the U.S. is violating the U.N. Convention Against Torture by separating families and indefinitely detaining immigrant children.
  • An amicus curiae brief on reparations owed to a victim of torture in the context of the U.S. extraordinary rendition program, in a case before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.
  • Public comments to the U.S. federal government opposing proposed immigration regulations relating to the implementation of the Flores Settlement Agreement as violations of international human rights law.
  • resolution adopted by the Board of Supervisors of Santa Clara County declaring the county a “Human Rights County” and designating December 10 as Human Rights Day.
  • A joint local government/civil society/academia submission to the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights highlighting several actions taken by local city and county governments in and within the county of Santa Clara to promote and protect human rights. These actions were recognized in a report submitted by the U.N. High Commissioner for HR to the U.N. Human Rights Council.
  • A joint report between IHRC and the County of Santa Clara on “Women Experiencing Homelessness in Santa Clara County.”
  • A report on human rights violations in private immigrant detention centers in the U.S. (focusing on California).
  • A legal memo on the applicability of recently enacted criminal justice reform legislation spearheaded by SCU alumna Jessica Jackson JD ’11.
  • An amicus curiae brief in support of environmental human rights defenders in a case before the Inter-American Court of Human Rights.
  • An amicus curiae brief on the so-called “death penalty phenomenon” in a case before the Inter-American Court of Human Rights.
  • Public comments to the U.N. regarding a draft treaty in the area of business and human rights
  • Legal memos to assist partners litigating cases involving international war crimes in countries in Africa and Eastern Europe.

Santa Clara Law Student Contributions

Santa Clara Law students have also made important contributions to international law in the specific area of immigration.

  • A group of nine Santa Clara Law students, along with Clinical Professors Evangeline Abriel and Lynette Parker and Professor Pratheepan Gulasekaram, provided support to the Florence Immigrant and Refugee Rights Project in Arizona during their spring break, March 2019.
  • Through the Katherine and George Alexander Law Center, Santa Clara Law students under the supervision of Clinical Professor Lynette Parker represented survivors of trafficking in persons in applications for immigration relief. Additional representation was provided by students in the Immigration Appellate Practice Clinic, who represented five asylum seekers before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and the San Francisco Immigration Court.
  • The La Raza Law Student Association, supported by Deborah Moss-West and the Katharine and George Alexander Law Center, organized and implemented two Bridge to Justice community legal clinics, in which students, under attorney supervision, provided consultations in immigration as well as other areas of law.
  • Responding to serious human rights concerns, students in the International Human Rights Clinic, under the supervision of Clinical Professor Francisco Rivera, submitted reports to various United Nations human rights bodies addressing forced separation and prolonged detention of immigrant children, as well as forced labor and inadequate health services in private for-profit immigration detention centers. Students also submitted public comments to the U.S. federal government opposing proposed immigration regulations relating to the implementation of the Flores Settlement Agreement.
  • Finally, the student Social Justice Coalition, the Journal of International Law, and the Asian-Pacific American Law Student Association each organized and presented public information events concerning current issues in immigration law.

Santa Clara Law is tremendously proud of our students’ outstanding work and advocacy in these areas!

Event Update

Victims and International Justice panel members

Expert Workshop and Panel Discussion on “Victims and International Justice”
On November 3rd, 2018 Santa Clara University School of Law hosted the first Expert Workshop about “Victims and International Justice”. This expert workshop was organized by The Guernica Group, the Trust Fund for Victims (TFV) of the International Criminal Court, SCU’s Center for Global Law and Policy and the Working Group on Transitional Justice of the Latin American Society of International Law.

The workshop brought together a distinguished group of international lawyers, prosecutors, judges and human rights activists who, for the past 20 years, have played a decisive role in the fight for justice on behalf of victims of international crimes and serious human rights violations to discuss the role and participation of victims in different justice mechanisms.

Participating experts included Yassmin Barrios (Guatemala), Carlos Castresana (Spain), Ligia Bolivar (Venezuela), Henry Rivera (Colombia), Alexandra Sandoval (Nicaragua), Naomi Roht-Arriaza (USA), Beth Van Schaack (USA), as well as a delegation from the Trust Fund for Victims, integrated by Motoo Noguchi, Felipe Michelini and Erin Rosenberg, and members of The Guernica Group, Almudena Bernabeu, Toby Cadman, and Claudia Josi.

Read more.

Faculty Updates

Evangeline Abriel has been involved in a number of immigration law activities during the past year. In August 2018, she was a member of a team inspecting a juvenile immigration detention center in Brownsville, Texas, under the auspices of the Flores v. Reno class action settlement order, and filed a report of that inspection with class counsel. She also co-authored the manual T Visas: a Critical Immigration Option for Survivors of Human Trafficking, published by the Immigrant Legal Resource Center in 2019. With Lynette Parker and Pratheepan Gulasekaram, she led a spring break service trip to the Florence Immigrant and Refugee Rights Project in Arizona, where Santa Clara law students interviewed immigration detainees seeking asylum and conducted legal and factual research for the Florence Project staff. She co-authored two amicus briefs, with Professor Jennifer Lee Koh, to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, on the issue of whether the term “crime involving moral turpitude” under the U.S. immigration laws is void for vagueness. In December 2018, she spent several days volunteering at Al Otro Lado in Tijuana, Mexico, providing consultations to asylum seekers. She spoke at a number of immigration-related events, including the American Immigration Lawyers Association annual conference. With her students, she currently represents six individuals seeking asylum in the United States, some before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit and some before the San Francisco Immigration Court. She was selected as a 2019 Pro Bono Champion by the American Immigration Lawyers Association, Santa Clara Valley chapter.

Michael Asimow presented a paper entitled “Between the Agency and the Court: Ex Ante Review of Regulations” at the Administrative Law Discussion Forum in Lyon, France in June, 2019.

Colleen Chien is co-editor on a book with fellow SCU professor, Brian Love and has had the following items published in the last year:

  • Inter Partes Review and the Design of Post-Grant Patent Reviews, with Christian Helmers, and Alfred Spigarelli 33 Berkeley Tech. L.J. 817 (2019).
  • Harmony and Disharmony in International Patent Law, East-West Center Working Paper Series and Book Chapter (2018).
  • Comparative Patent Quality, 50 Ariz. St. L.J. 71 (2018).

Eric Goldman has a forthcoming article: The U.K. Online Harms White Paper and the Internet’s Cable-ized Future, Ohio State Tech. L.J. (2019) ( In February 2019, he gave opening remarks at COMO at the European Parliament, Brussels, Belgium (topic was content moderation by Internet companies)

In December 2019, he is giving a talk at Tel Aviv University entitled “Content Moderation Remedies.”

He was named as a finalist (one of 6 in the world) for the 2018 World Technology Awards, Law Division.

Brian Love is a co-editor of a new volume published in July by Cambridge Univ Press: Patent Remedies and Complex Products: Toward a Global Consensus. The book is the culmination of a multi-year collaboration among 20 patent law professors drawn from 11 countries around the world.

In September, he will be co-teaching the PhD Workshop at EPIP 2019. EPIP (European Policy for Intellectual Property”) is a large academic IP conference held annually in Europe, and this year it will be held at ETH Zurich. The title of the workshop is “The Legal and Economic Analysis of Patent Litigation,” and he is co-teaching it with Christian Helmers from the SCU economics department.

In May 2019, Prof. Tyler Ochoa gave two lectures on A Comparative (US/EU) Approach to Transnational Intellectual Property Disputes at the University of Verona Summer School in Transnational Commercial and Technology Law. In July 2019, Prof. Ochoa presented a one-unit course on Comparative Rights of Publicity at the University of Augsburg Faculty of Law’s Summer Session.

In July 2018, Prof. Ochoa presented a three-unit course on Intellectual Property in the Digital Age at the University of Strathmore, LL.M. Program in Intellectual Property Law, in Nairobi, Kenya. He also published an article on Copyright and Underwater Cultural Heritage in 49 J. Maritime L. & Commerce, 441 (2018).

Donald J. Polden, Dean Emeritus and Professor of Law, directed the law school’s program in Vienna during the summer of 2019. The students enrolled in the program greatly appreciated the excellent instruction provided by faculty members from the University of Vienna and enjoyed a lengthy visit to the Austrian Supreme Court, complete with a historical tour of the Court’s chambers and work areas.

Polden served as Director of the law school’s Center for Global Law and Policy from 2016 until August of 2019 when he stepped aside and Professor Tseming Yang began service at the Center’s director. Polden, who was Dean at Santa Clara Law from 2003-2013, greatly enjoyed providing leadership to the Center for our year and looks forward to continuing to serve as a summer program director in future summers. Professor Polden wants to give a well-deserved shout out to Carly Koebel, Senior Program Director in the Center for her outstanding efforts on behalf of the Center.

Professor Polden has continued his scholarly production and assistance to student organizations. In March 2018, he assisted the Santa Clara Law Review in offering a full day conference on “Antitrust in Silicon Valley”. He is producing a law review article for inclusion in the special symposium issue on that subject. Further, he spoke at a national conference on leadership education in law schools held at the University of Tennessee Law School. He is producing a law review article for inclusion in that symposium issue of the law review. Polden also produced a lengthy chapter on “leading the compliance function in corporations” that will be published in a forthcoming book on the compliance function in U.S. companies.

In the fall semester 2019, Polden is teaching classes on antitrust law, sports law and policy and leadership for lawyers.

Francisco Rivera Juaristi was considered as a potential U.S. candidate to serve on the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights; spoke at the University of Minnesota and Berkeley School of Public Health about the need for a new international treaty to address violence against women; spoke at community events celebrating Human Rights Day in Palo Alto and in Santa Clara County; participated in several panels on campus to discuss issues related to international human rights, immigration, and environmental justice; published a blog post submitted a chapter on “human dignity” for a book commemorating the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration on Human Rights; submitted a chapter on “State Responsibility for Corporate Human Rights Violations” for a book on the U.N. draft treaty on Business and Human Rights. Prof. Rivera continues to serve as a member of the National Human Rights Cities Alliance Steering Committee; was appointed to serve in the Human Rights Task Force of the Human Rights Commission of the County of Santa Clara, and serves as a member of the Global Steering Committee for a civil society coalition that is drafting a new UN treaty on violence against women.

During the summer, Prof. Rivera co-directed and taught in the law school’s summer abroad programs in Costa Rica and Geneva.

Catherine Sandoval gave a lecture in July 2019 at Oxford University on the “Native American Reservation Electricity Gap” attended by fellows from the Oxford Energy Institute and the participants in Santa Clara University’s Summer Law program at Oxford University. She also directed the Energy, Environment, and Ethics Conference at Oxford University in July 2019 convened by Santa Clara University School of Law and the National Energy Marketers Association. She organized meetings with the United Kingdom energy regulatory, OfGem, the Energy Attache at the U.S. Embassy, and conference speakers from the academic, private, and non-profit sectors to discuss U.K. energy market design, and energy objectives including addressing climate change and energy efficiency. At the Energy, Environment, and Ethics conference at Oxford University she conducted a lecture on Energy Efficiency, Equity, Market Design, and Climate Change.

David Sloss continues to publish actively in the field of international law. Recent publications include:

  • Universal Human Rights and Constitutional Change, 27 William and Mary Bill of Rights Journal 1183 (2019) (with Wayne Sandholtz)
  • Book chapter on “United States,” in Duelling for Supremacy: International Law vs. National Fundamental Principles (Cambridge Univ. Press 2019) (Fulvio Maria Palombino, ed.)

Professor Sloss has also written several pieces that are due to be published soon, including:

  • Domestic Application of Treaties, in The Oxford Guide to Treaties (Oxford Univ. Press, 2nd ed. forthcoming 2019-20) (Duncan Hollis, ed.)
  • The Engagement of U.S. Courts with International Law, in Engagement of Domestic Courts with International Law (Oxford Univ. Press, forthcoming 2019-20) (Nollkaemper, Shany, Tzanakopoulos, eds.)
  • Section 230 and the Duty to Prevent Mass Atrocities, Case Western Reserve Journal of International Law (forthcoming 2019-20)
  • Neither Kantian nor Orwellian (Reviewing Harold Koh, The Trump Administration and International Law), German Yearbook of International Law (forthcoming 2019-20)

Professor Sloss is currently working on a book on Information Warfare and Social Media. He has published a couple of short essays on this topic, which are available here and here.

Finally, Professor Sloss remains active in important international law organizations. He is currently chairing a study group under the auspices of the American Branch of the International Law Association that is examining threats to the liberal international order. The study group will be meeting in New York City in October 2019 and in Santa Clara in February 2020. He is also chairing a Judicial Outreach Committee for the American Society of International Law. The Committee is working with judges from the Second, Fifth, Seventh, and Ninth Circuits to organize panels on international law for their Circuit Conferences next year.

In February 2019, Tseming Yang published an article entitled “The Emergence of the Environmental Impact Assessment Duty as a Global Legal Norm and General Principle of Law,” 70 Hastings Law Journal 525 (2019). Over the summer, he also completed work on his new casebook, “Comparative and Global Environmental Law and Policy” (with Anastasia Telesetsky, Lin Harmon-Walker, and Robert Percival), which will be released by Wolters Kluwer in September 2019.

In March 2019, he participated in a workshop on “Re-Imagining Environmental and Natural Resources Law,” hosted by the Washington, DC-based Environmental Law Institute at the Johnson Foundation’s Wingspread Retreat in Racine, Wisconsin.

Together with an interdisciplinary group of four faculty colleagues from the Arts & Sciences and the Engineering Schools, Professor Yang co-organized a 2-day conference in May 2019 on “Environmental Justice and the Common Good.” In addition to helping launch environmental justice-focused partnerships with other universities and Jesuit institutions, including a national and global network involving the Society of Jesus and the Association of Jesuit Colleges and Universities (AJCU) Integral Ecology Affinity Group, the conference also helped initiate research collaborations on regional and local environmental justice projects. The conference attracted over 250 students, faculty, staff, visiting academics, and representatives of community-based organizations to Santa Clara University and was broadly supported across the University, including by University President Fr. Michael Engh, the Provost’s Office, and the Ignatian Center, as well as Dean Kloppenberg and the Deans of the other Schools.

In July 2019, Professor Yang gave a presentation on the “Globalization of Environmental Law” at the Stockholm Environment Institute at Chulalongkorn University in Bangkok, Thailand. In August 2019, he gave a presentation on “Cancer Villages in China,” at the IUCN Academy for Environmental Law’s Annual Colloquium, hosted by the Faculty of Law of the Universiti Teknologi Mara in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. He was also elected to the IUCN Academy’s Board of Governors for a 3-year term.

Center for Global Law & Policy

Santa Clara Law

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Phone: (408) 551-1955

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Our New Casebook: “Comparative and Global Environmental Law and Policy,” Wolters Kluwer (2019)

I am really pleased to share the news that our law casebook “Comparative and Global Environmental Law and Policy,” co-authored with Anastasia Telesetsky (University of Idaho Law School), Lin Harmon-Walker (George Washington University Law School), and Robert Percival (University of Maryland Law School), is now officially available from Wolters Kluwer (ISBN: 9780735577299).


Here’s the blurb from our book’s back-cover:

“Over the past several decades, globalization has become central to the field of environmental law.  The most pressing contemporary environmental challenges are now transboundary and global in scope, with international environmental treaties and institutions dominating among the most visible solutions.  Even more important, however, has been the rapid spread and evolution of environmental law norms and policies in national systems across the world.  For example, these trends have led to the adoption of environmental impact assessment as a legal requirement by almost all countries, the rise of public interest litigation and green courts as key environmental governance mechanisms, and adoption of laws and regulatory mechanisms to address climate change and other environmental problems across the world.

Written by leading scholars and experts with extensive practice and teaching experience in the field, Comparative and Global Environmental Law and Policy offers a student-friendly approach to the study of a rapidly evolving and important area of law.  Its multi-jurisdictional selection of judicial opinions and legal materials introduces students to the worldwide reach of environmental law.  Through its substance, the book familiarizes students not only with governing and emerging legal principles but also demonstrates how legal norms are applied to specific issues and contexts, illustrating how law-on-the-books becomes law-in-action.”

Position: Trial Attorney, US Dept. of Justice, Environment Division, Wildlife and Marine Resources Section, Washington, DC (Deadline: 10/4/2019)

2 open position for experienced attorneys.

Here’s a write-up about the Wildlife Section:

“WMRS primarily handles civil defensive litigation under federal wildlife laws and laws concerning the protection of marine fish and mammals, including the Endangered Species Act, the Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, the Migratory Bird Treaty Act, and the Marine Mammal Protection Act. The Section represents a broad range of federal regulatory and resource management agencies, including the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the National Marine Fisheries Service, the U.S. Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management, and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. The Section’s cases involve challenges to rulemakings about which species should be listed as threatened or endangered under the Endangered Species Act, agency decisions about the way in which protected species are considered when federal agencies carry out their missions, and other litigation related to the balance between species protection and resource development in federal agency decision-making. The work of the Section is varied and often affords attorneys the opportunity to be involved in some of the most complex and important cases currently arising in this area of the law. This is not a criminal prosecution position.

WMRS seeks to hire and cultivate talented trial attorneys and provides its lawyers with regular and meaningful court experience in a variety of jurisdictions on a broad range of issues. Attorneys in the Section are assigned a docket of multiple cases and are given first-chair responsibility for all aspects of their cases including drafting procedural and dispositive motions, handling written and oral discovery when needed, conducting settlement negotiations, defending emergency motions, including examination of witnesses when necessary, and presenting oral argument. Attorneys in the Section also counsel client agencies on their compliance with statutes under the Section’s jurisdiction. The cases handled by WMRS require attorneys to achieve intellectual command of complicated facts, scientific principles, and legal issues, often rapidly.”

The Annual molting of the Chicken

As many know, Citizen Yang is also Farmer Yang.  Farmer Yang has a backyard fruit orchard as well as a flock of eleven egg-laying hens.  Prior to keeping chicken, Farmer Yang did not know that chicken lose all of their feathers on an annual basis, usually in the fall. One of our older hens, Opera, is now going through the molting process. She looks as if she was just through a bad fight. But all is normal. Molting chicken do seem to get shyer and they drop in the flock’s pecking order.  Ordinarily, Opera is a fairly dominant hen; but during this time of the year, it seems that other hens are picking on  her.  The last image is from the previous year, showing her in the full glory of her regular plumage.

Palm Oil Plantations and the Environment in Southeast Asia

Last month, I took a road trip from Penang, Malaysia to the capital Kuala Lumpur to attend the annual IUCN Academy of Environmental Law Colloquium (August 6-9, 2019).  Apart from seeing some scenic tourist spots, such as Melakka which is one of the original places where the Dutch and the British had their colonial headquarters prior to Malaysia’s independence, the trip was relatively uneventful. We did stop at various places to check out the sights or special foods.   And the main north-south freeway route was a modern and easy drive, not much unlike a freeway drive in the US.

What I did find remarkable, however, was the visible vegetation, which was pretty much the same through most of the four hours – miles and miles of palm plantations, sometimes as far as the eye could see beyond the freeway.  Environmental concern about palm oil plantations have steadily grown over the years.  These plantations destroy enormous swaths of native forest and replace naturally occurring biologically diverse ecosystems with a monoculture in order to supply the worlds hunger for palm oil.  Over the past few decades, palm oil demand and production has risen rapidly because some of its qualities make it a great additive or base for many foods and products.  Take a look at the ingredient labels of your favorite foods, and you may discover it listed.

In Indonesia, especially, palm oil plantation have presented especially serious problems because the methods by which forest lands have been cleared in order to make way for palm oil plantations has given rise to many serious forest fires, including igniting some of the peat in the soil, that have been incredibly difficult to extinguish.  Interestingly, the result of some of these fires have been serious transboundary air pollution problems that have affected also Singapore.

I have been following the transboundary air pollution issue with special interest because it’s given rise to a Singaporean statute, The Transboundary Haze Pollution Act of 2014 (THPA).  The title and issue should immediately give away why this is so remarkable . . . Singapore is a small island nation of just a little over 5 million people living on 280 square miles.  In other words, air pollution originating in nearby Indonesia, especially from the forest fires and peat fires associated with land clearing for palm oil planations,  will necessarily affect air quality in Singapore.


Southeast Asian Haze 2013 (Wikimedia Commons). Red spots indicate fires.

In order to protect air quality in Singapore, the THPA explicitly purports to regulate sources of pollution OUTSIDE of Singapore.  Under the statute, an offense of the statute would result if an entity causes air pollution affecting Singapore, which could be punished with a fine of up to 100,000 Singaporean dollars per day!  From a legal perspective, statutes that have an explicit extraterritorial reach are quite unusual, though not unheard of.  The US has sought to reach conduct outside of the US in the antitrust context, for example; but it has generally not done so on environmental issues (though US citizens remain subject to the reach of US law even outside of the US).  Anyway, from what I understand, the THPA has given rise to tricky issues in regards to conflict/tension with Indonesia, where much of the fire-related air pollution affecting Singapore originates, and enforcement has not been straight-forward.  In other words, the story on this statute is still playing itself out.

Since I mentioned my road trip to Melakka, I feel obligated to share images of the sites and food places we visited!  It includes an image of “Mamee,” the instant noodle monster . . . he (it? she?) looks surprisingly like Cookie Monster from Sesame Street . . .  mmmh.  We also found lots of durian (my kryptonite), a great Peranakan restaurant serving Laksa (a Malaysian specialty), and a tandoori/naan outdoor restaurant serving Pakistani/Northern Indian cuisine (just the tastiest tandoori I have ever had!).





Modified 9/18 – 2019-2020 Searches for Open Environmental Law Professor Positions

This year, there seem to be, again, a number of searches for law faculty positions that focus on or include environmental/energy/natural resource law as a desired specialty or interest area.  Mostly, these are searches that have been publicized through notices on various listservs that I subscribe to. (It seems that over the past few years, there has been more hiring for this field than in years prior.)  For those with such career goals, here are some of the institutions:

  1. Penn State Law in University Park (University Park, PA):  ” Penn State Law will be making two interdisciplinary hires. The first is a joint hire with the Penn State Institutes of Energy and the Environment for a position in energy and/or environmental law.”  ” Penn State Law will be attending the AALS faculty recruitment conference, and entry level candidates are strongly encouraged to participate in the AALS Faculty Appointments Register. Lateral candidates should submit a current CV, four letters of reference, teaching evaluations, and a draft work-in-progress to Specific inquiries should be addressed to the chair of the Appointments Committee, Professor Sam Thompson, at”
  2. Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law (Indianapolis, IN): “seeks a visiting faculty member to hold the Robert H. McKinney Family Chair in Environmental Law for the Spring 2020 semester with the possibility of continuing through Fall 2020. The law school invites applicants with the type of academic profile suitable for a titled position.” “Interested candidates should submit a CV and cover letter to Vice Dean Mike Pitts at Applications
    will be reviewed on a rolling basis with September 15 as the deadline for all applications.”
  3. University of Florida Levin College of Law (Gainesville, FL): “In reviewing applications, the Appointments Committee will consider long-term teaching needs in large enrollment classes, environmental law, health law, tax, and law and technology.”  “For further information, applicants may contact Professors Daniel Sokol and Michael Wolf at P.O. Box 117620, Gainesville, FL 32611 or email”
  4. Florida International University College of Law (Miami, FL):  ” two tenured or tenure-track Assistant, Associate, or full Professor of Law positions to begin in the 2020-21 academic year. Our primary curricular interests are Cyber Law (focusing on cybercrime/forensics, interconnected cities, infrastructure security, and general
    cybersecurity training and education), Environmental Law, Wills & Trusts, and Torts. The Cyber Law position may be a joint appointment with another FIU School or College.” “For any questions related to the position, please contact Appointments Committee co-chairs Jan Osei-Tutu ( or Scott Norberg ( To receive full consideration, applications and required materials should be received by September 30.”
  5. The University of Baltimore School of Law (Baltimore, MD):  ” We will consider applicants with a wide range of teaching interests, including, but not limited to, all First Year Subjects, as well as Family Law, Commercial Law, and Environmental Law.”  “Contact (e-mail preferred): Professor David Jaros, Chair, Faculty Appointments Committee, University of Baltimore School of Law, 1420 North Charles Street, Baltimore, MD 21201-5779,”
  6. University of California at Davis School of Law (Davis, CA): “invites applications for a Water Justice Clinical Lecturer, who will act as the director of the Aoki Water Justice Clinic, by October 20, 2019 and/or until the position is filled.” “All candidates must apply through the UC Recruit system at the following link: For full consideration, applicants should apply by October 20, 2019, although we recommend that you submit your materials as soon as possible.”
  7. The University of Tulsa College of Law (Tulsa, OK):  “The areas of interest may include, but are not necessarily limited to, civil procedure, property, business law, transactional law, Indian law, energy and natural resource law, contracts, and other first year and required courses.” “Please submit letters of interest and résumés to Prof. Robert Spoo, Chair, Appointments Committee, University of Tulsa College of Law, 3120 E. 4th Place, Tulsa, OK 74104, or by email to”
  8. The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law: “seeks entry-level or junior lateral candidates for at least one tenure-track position. Our primary areas of need are Dispute Resolution, Business Law, and Race and Law. Secondary areas of need include Antitrust, Banking/Insurance, Civil Procedure/Complex Litigation, Commercial Law, Evidence, Immigration, Intellectual Property/Law and Technology, Natural Resources/Energy Law, Poverty/Social Welfare Law, Property/Real Estate, and Wills & Trusts.” “Candidates should send a cover letter and C.V. to Daniel Tokaji, Associate Dean for Faculty,, stating that they are applying for this position.”
  9. Added – The University of Denver Sturm College of Law:  “we anticipate particular interests in administrative law, alternative dispute resolution, environmental and natural resources law (including energy law), evidence, international law, professional responsibility, property, tax, and veterans advocacy.”  ” Interested persons should send a cover letter, resume (including at least three references), teaching statement, and research agenda to Professor José Roberto (Beto) Juárez Jr., Chair, Faculty Appointments Committee (”
  10. Added – Texas Tech University School of Law:  ” open faculty position (Requisition 1877BR). Anticipated curricular needs include Water Law, Property, and Environmental Law. “successful candidate will also serve as the Director for the Law School’s Center for Water Law and Policy. If tenured, the successful candidate may also be considered to fill the position of the George W. McCleskey Professor of Water Law.” “In addition to serving as the Center’s Director, responsibilities would include teaching Water Law and related courses such as Property and Environmental Law. ” “Please submit your cover letter, resume, and contact information for three professional references electronically to the attention of Professor Brian D. Shannon, Chair, Personnel Committee, at the Texas.”
  11. Added – University of Houston Law Center:  “The University of Houston Law Center invites applications for a non-tenure track Instructional Associate Professor of Law position; with Environmental Law emphasis for the academic year 2020-2021.” “This non-tenure track appointment may have a one-year probationary contract period with no presumption of renewal. However, based upon continued positive evaluations of the appointee, or sufficiently high experience and expertise when entering into the position, the position may provide or lead to a presumptively renewable multiyear contract. The initial salary range for this position is expected to be $90,000 to $100,000 for a nine-month academic year, but the precise salary will be negotiated based on the candidate’s experience and on compensation paid or offered to professors in comparable positions at comparable law schools.” ” The successful candidate will have the opportunity to teach environmental law courses, but experience or willingness to teach elsewhere in the Law Center curriculum, including 1L courses, will be a helpful credential depending on the course preferences.” “To receive fullest consideration, your online application must be received by September 10, 2019. Candidates can direct inquiries to Professor Robert Ragazzo, Please reference and review the University of Houston’s NTT Faculty Policy, available at this link: “

And for those really serious about and already committed to entering the legal academy as environmental law professors, Pace Law School (White Plains, NY) hosts an annual workshop for aspiring environmental law professors. This year’s workshop is coming up on September 13, 2019.  Here’s the registration link:​​