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Staying Afloat

Adapting to Climate Change on

the Gulf and Beyond


Welcome to New Orleans and the 2010 National Association of Environ-
mental Law Societies (NAELS) Annual Conference! It is a great pleasure for Loy-
ola University New Orleans College of Law to host this year’s conference - Staying
Staying Afloat Afloat: Adapting to Climate Change on the Gulf and Beyond.

The theme of the conference has both a figurative and literal approach for
New Orleans and coastal communities across the globe. Climate change presents
an assortment of foreseeable and unforseeable risks with wide ranging implica-
Adapting to Climate tions. It is important we begin to recognize risks, evaluate trends, and adjust our
actions accordingly. While we still maintain the fight to prevent the worst potential
Change on the Gulf climate change catatstrophes, we must plan for those changes we cannot prevent,
the changes we must adapt to.
and Beyond
New Orleans is no stranger to the consequences of inaction. The devestat-
ing aftermath of Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans dramatically illustrated the
failure of government to recognize risks and craft effective and proactive environ-
mental policy. However, as the fifth anniversary of Katrina approaches, we report
buoyant news from New Orleans. For the first time in the City’s history, New Or-
leans has adopted a comprehensive master plan that specifically recommends that
the City account for climate change and anticipated global sea level rise to meet
new community standards for resilience and sustainability.

Climate adaptation policies are taking shape across the nation as commu-
nities begin to recognize their own vulnerabilities and the risks posed by climate
hazards. Just last October, in Comer v. Murphy Oil, a three judge panel of the
U.S Fifth Circuit reversed a District Court dismissal of nuisance claims related to
NALES 2010 Planning Committee damage from Hurricane Katrina, and allowed plaintiffs to “rely on allegations of a
causal link between greenhouse gas emissions, global warming, and the destruction
Brian Bromberger- Dean, Loyola College of Law  
Robert Verchick- Faculty Advisor (on leave)   
of the plaintiffs’ property by rising sea levels and the added ferocity of Hurricane
Samuel Steinmetz- Assistant Director, Loyola Center for Envt’l Law Katrina.”
and Land Use  
Dan Worth- Executive Director, National Association of Environ- With all of the exciting legal developments surrounding climate change,
mental Law Societies NAELS felt it was particularly important to highlight the often disproportionate
Sarah Johnson- President, Loyola Environmental Law Society  
adverse effects on environmental justice communities. We hope this focus will stim-
Whitford Remer- Chair, 2010 NAELS   
Bailey DeRouen - Co-Chair, 2010 NAELS   ulate continued interest in the social justice movement. Helping marginalized com-
Tara Myers- Co-Chair, 2010 NAELS   munities adapt to climate change by increasing awareness can create safer, more
Caitlin Byars- Lodging and Transportation   equitable, and sustainable places for all of us.
Lindsey Crow- Student Outreach  
Lydia Fakes- Couch Surfing Coordinator    We would like to thank the faculty and administration of Loyola University
Megan Hudson-Volunteer Coordinator   
Rene Merino- Conference Historian  
New Orleans and the College of Law for their generosity and support. We would
Tara Mikhail- Communications   also like to thank our keynote speakers and distinguished panelists for joining us in
Joseph Moore- Site Operations   this important discussion. Finally, we extend a special welcome to member groups
Ron Ramirez- Treasurer    of the National Association of Environmental Law Societies (NAELS). As we say
Abraham Sandel- Program Designer   in New Orleans, Laissez Les Bon Temps Rouler!
Michael Schachtmanm- Food and Entertainment  
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2 Trotter- Marketing and Outreach  Page 3
Key Note Speakers Richard Louv is an author and journalist focused on nature, fam-
ily and community. His most recent book, Last Child in the Woods: Saving
Our Children From Nature-Deficit Disorder, has  stimulated an internation-
John M. Barry is a prize-winning and New York Times bestselling au-
al conversation about the future  relationship between children and nature,
thor whose books have won more than twenty awards. In 2006 the National
and has helped spawn a movement that is now moving into the international
Academies invited him to give its annual Abel Wolman Distinguished Lecture
sphere. Richard has written for The New York Times, The Washington Post, and
on Water Resources . He is the only nonscientist ever to give that lecture. In
many other newspapers and magazines. In 2008, he was awarded the Audubon
1998 Rising Tide: The Great Mississippi Flood of 1927 and How It Changed
Medal by the National Audubon Society. Mr. Louv is also the Chairman and
America, won the Francis Parkman Prize of the Society of American Historians
Co-Founder of the Children and Nature Network. Important to 2010 NAELS
for the year’s best book of American history. Mr. Barry currently serves on the
is the role children and diet will play in how communities and land use practices
Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority East & Coastal  Protection
respond and adapt to climate change. 
and Restoration Authority for Louisiana. Mr. Barry will present on the unique
topic of floodplain management, and how low lying and deltaic communities
must respond and adapt to climate change. 
F. Gerald Maples is the founder and senior attorney in the New
Orleans based law firm, F. Gerald Maples, P.A. He has over thirty years experi-
ence in toxic disease and environmental contamination cases and has represent-
ed over twenty thousand industrial disease victims as well as property owners
Michael Gerrard is the Professor of Professional Practice
who have suffered the effects of environmental pollution. In the aftermath of
and Director of the Center for Climate Change Law at Columbia Law School.
Hurricane Katrina the firm filed two uniquely important cases. One case, St.
Until late 2008, he headed the New York office of Arnold & Porter LLP and its
Bernard Parish Government vs. USA, involves the taking of property rights by
environmental practice, and he is currently Senior Counsel to the firm. He has
the United States Government due to the man-made destruction of Louisiana
practiced environmental law in New York since 1979. He was the 2004-2005
wetlands by the United States Army Corp of Engineers. The other case, Comer
chair of the American Bar Association’s 10,000-member Section of Environ-
vs. Murphy Oil, et al. is a decision by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals that
ment, Energy, and Resources, and authored Global Climate Change and U.S.
establishes the fundamental jurisdictional, standing, and redressability require-
Law. Legal Media Group’s Guide to the World’s Leading Environment Lawyers,
ments that form the basis of climate change litigation. In recognition of the
based on 4,000 questionnaires, reported that Mr. Gerrard “received more per-
victims of Hurricane Katrina, and the countless future victims of man-made
sonal nominations for this guide than any other lawyer in the world.” We are
global warming, Mr. Maples has established a non-profit organization designed
excited to feature one of the foremost climate change lawyers to join us for the
to bring help to climate change victims called Footnote18.
conference.

Dr. Beverly Wright is a professor of Sociology and the found-


ing director of the Deep South Center for Environmental Justice (DSCEJ). For
Amory Lovins co-author of Natural Capitalism: Creating the
more than a decade, Dr. Wright has been a leading scholar, advocate, and activ-
Next Industrial Revolution, is the cofounder, Chairman, and Chief Scien- ist in the environmental justice arena. In October of 2009, Dr. Wright received
tist at the Rocky Mountain Institute in Snowmass, Colorado. Published in 29
a Heinz Family Foundation award for her work in environmental justice. She
books and hundreds of papers, he advises governments and major firms world-
has created a unique center formerly at Xavier University currently at Dillard
wide on advanced energy and resource efficiency, and has led the technical re-
University in New Orleans, Louisiana. The DSCEJ is one of the few communi-
design of more than $30 billion worth of facilities in 29 sectors to achieve very
ty/university partnerships that addresses environmental and health inequities
large energy savings at typically lower capital cost. Mr. Lovins presentation at
in the Lower Mississippi River Industrial Corridor, the area commonly referred
2010 NAELS will focus on how major industries can use new and innovative
to as Cancer Alley. Dr. Wright will present on how environmental justice com-
technology to increase efficiency and curb overall green house gas emissions. 
munities are affected by climate change.

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Panels

Tim Duggan- Landscape Architect, Make It Right Foundation
Denise J. Reed- Professor and Interim Director, Pontchartrain Institute for
Environmental Justice Plenary: Environmental Sciences
No Place Like Home: Environmental Justice on the Stephen D. Villavaso- Planner, Villavaso and Associates
Front Lines of Climate Change
International Environmental Law:
The IPCC reports that low-income and minority populations are the most susceptible to Copenhagen and BeyoND
climate change. Explore how reduced winter icepack threatens native Alaskan Inuit tribes,
how hurricanes and sea level rise are forcing the coastal Louisiana Houma Indian tribe to With the recent close of the Copenhagen Climate Summit, developed and developing na-
consider relocating to higher ground, and the human health impacts of heavy industry in tions failed to formalize a treaty that would address global climate change. This panel will
southern Louisiana. look at international climate change law and analyze the framework that spawned this rapidly
growing legal field, what exactly we can take away from Copenhagen, and what the future
Victor B. Flatt- University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Law holds in terms of a global climate treaty.
Monique Harden- Co-Director & Attorney, Advocates for Envt’l Human Rights
Brenda Dardar Robichaux- Principal Chief, United Houma Nation Markus G. Puder- Associate Professor, Loyola University New Orleans, College of Law
Joel Waltzer - Attorney, Waltzer and Associates Durwood J. Zaelke- President, Institute for Governance and Sustainable Development

Moderator: Joel Devalcourt, President, University of New Orleans Action Coalition for Racial, So- Moderator: James Patrick Schuster, Loyola International Law Society
cial, and Environmental Justice
Know What It Means to Be New Orleans:
Staying Afloat: A Geographical, Historical, and CONTEMPORarY Exam-
Adapting to Climate Change oN the Gulf and ination of the Big Easy
Beyond
New Orleans has been described as an “unnatural metropolis.” Discover the unique, suscep-
Our featured panel, Staying Afloat, is an opportunity to explore critical topics related to tible, but un-accidental location of the city. Panelists will explore the settlement, rebuilding,
climate change adaptation. This panel features some of the foremost thinkers of adaptation and future foot-print of one of America’s most beloved treasures. What risks does climate
policy and planning. Panelists will survey current federal policy, agency rules, and provide change pose to New Orleans, and what decisions can be made to adapt and protect the city?
commentary on specific public infrastructure projects.
Craig E. Colten- Professor, Louisiana State University Department of Anthropology
Dr. Elizabeth English- Director, Buoyant Foundation Project and Associate Professor Oliver A. Houck –Professor of Law, Tulane University Law School
of Architecture, University of Waterloo Sandy Rosenthal - Founder, Levees.org (invited)
James E. Neumann- Principal, Industrial Economics, Incorporated
J.B. Ruhl- Professor of Law, Florida State University College of Law Moderator: Alexandra Giancarlo, Louisiana State University

Moderator: Sarah Johnson, President, Loyola Environmental Law Society Energy and Economics:
The Intersection of Wealth, Watts, and Weather
Toward a Sustainable Future: Finding the Most Sus-
tainable Approaches to Land Use Decision Making Energy efficiency and production will provide opportunities for innovative engineering dur-
ing the next century. With innovation comes cost savings, the shifting value of natural re-
Understanding the interaction between people and land is critical to implementing effec- sources, market reaction, and the chance to tap into clean, new sources of energy.
tive environmental policy. With half of the world’s population now living in coastal cit-
ies, and more than half of citizens of the United States living in areas protected by levees, Robert B. McKinstry, Jr.- Attorney, Ballard Spahr, LLP
managing natural hazards is a key component to building safer communities. With more Mary Ellen Ternes- Attorney, McAfee & Taft
intense and frequent storms, recurring flooding, and sea level rise, a new look must be given Jeff Williams- Director of Climate Consulting, Entergy Corporation
to National Flood Insurance Program and practices undertaken by the Army Corps of En-
gineers, and other land use policies. Moderator: Brad Driscoll, Loyola Tax Law Society
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Ecosystem services: the unexpected lagniappe
We must rely on science to keep us safe. Science is translated into policy in the form of
In Louisiana, lagniappe means “a little something extra.” Historically, the people of Louisiana regulation. Current climate science tells us that greenhouse emissions are creating an unsafe
have lived off the wetlands and the valuable services they provide. Discover the immense value environment for us to continue the status quo. How will the Environmental Protection
that wetlands play in storm surge reduction, aquatic industries, and the protection of valuable Agency’s endangerment finding help mitigate greenhouse gases? What type of policies can
infrastructure. help encourage us to build safer and more resilient communities?

J.B. Ruhl- Professor of Law, Florida State University College of Law Sidney A. Shapiro- Associate Dean for Research and Development, Wake Forest
Dr. Robert A. Thomas- Director, Loyola Center for Environmental Communication University School of Law
Dr. Wilma Subra- Chief Chemist, Louisiana Environmental Action Network
Environmental Justice Policy Michael J. Walker- Senior Enforcement Counsel for Administrative Litigation, U.S.
EPA, Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance
What can government agencies do to better protect environmental jusice communities? Exam-
ine the role of how land-use policy disproportionately affects these communities, and the long Moderator: Samuel Steinmetz, Assistant Director, Loyola Center for Environmental Law and
term consequences. Land Use

Dr. Earthea Nance- Assistant Professor, The University of New Orleans Department of Hard Choices in Southern Louisiana:
Planning and Urban Studies Coastal subsidence and rising ocean waters
Michael J. Walker- Senior Enforcement Counsel for Administrative Litigation,
U.S. EPA, Office of Enforcement and Compliance Assurance Hurricanes Katrina and Rita turned 100 square miles of marsh into open water. Global
Dr. Beth Willinger- Research Professor and Executive Director Emeriti, Newcomb warming exacerbates this trend - current projections are the loss of most of Southern Loui-
Center for Research on Women, Tulane University siana and New Orleans. Is coastal restoration the magic bullet? Do attempts to save New
Orleans and other towns only hasten the destruction of the wetlands, while postponing the
Moderator: Anna Levin - President, Loyola Public Intrerst Law Group eventual deluge? Are environmentalists being blinded by social justice claims?

Trouble the Water: Dr. Ivor van Heerden-Center for the Study of Public Health Impacts of Hurricanes
How Climate Change Affects the Hydrologic Cycle Edward P. Richards- Professor, Louisiana State University Law School
Cynthia Sarthou- Executive Director, Gulf Restoration Network
Whether by drowning or dehydration, one thing is for certain- climate change will dramatically
Moderator: Beaux Jones, Vice Pesident Louisiana State University Evnt’l Law Society
affect the quality, quantity, and distribution of the world’s water supply. Locally, our wetlands
and water supplies have been degraded by energy exploration and refining, cypress logging,
Branching Out:
wetlands development, and the likely prospect is that a changing climate will have even greater
Federalism, Constitutional Issues, and the Political
impacts. Climate change is predicted to reduce snowpack, increase flooding, intensify drought,
Question Doctrine
and shift seasonal weather patterns. The effect of climate change on the water cycle could be the
most severe and devastating consequence to people, ecosystems, crops, and communities.
Go out on a limb and explore the lofty world of our court system and the difficult environ-
mental cases it considers. From recent Supreme Court decisions- to those that can not be
Mark S. Davis - Director, Institute of Water Resources and Policy, Tulane University
heard- panelists will discuss recent trends and important cases related to climate change and
Randy Hill - Deputy Director, U.S. EPA, Office of Wastewater Management
the environment.
Ray Manning - President, Manning Architects

Vicki Arroyo- Executive Director, Georgetown State and Federal Climate Resource
Moderator: Allison Shipp - Chair, 15th Annual Tulane Summit on Environmental Law and Pol-
icy Center, Georgetown Law
James R. May- Associate Director, Widener Environmental Law Center
Regulation and Science:
Moderator: Quiniton Bell, President, American Constitution Society, Loyola College of Law
The Backbone of Effective Environmental Protection
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Schedule Friday, March 5
Thursday, March 4 8:00 a.m. Registration Opens

9:00 a.m. Registration Opens Location: Joseph A. Danna Student Center, main campus
Loyola University New Orleans
Location: The Joseph A. Danna Student Center 6363 St. Charles Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70118.
Loyola University New Orleans
6363 St. Charles Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70118. 9:00 a.m. Opening Invocation

10:00 a.m. Service trip departs Father Vien Nguyen, Pastor, Mary Queen of Vietnam Catholic Church
Location: St. Charles Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center
Join 2010 NAELS to help restore the coast as we partner with Bayou Rebirth and the
American Bar Association’s One Million Trees Project- Right Tree at the Right Place 9:10 a.m. Breakfast Keynote: Dr. Beverly Wright, Executive Director, Deep South Center
at the Right Time. for Environmental Justice

Shuttle will depart from the horseshoe-parking circle located at the front of the main Introduction by Tiffany Tate- President, Loyola Black Law Student Association
campus of Loyola University New Orleans Location: St. Charles Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center
6363 St. Charles Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70118
Lunch will be provided. 10:15 a.m. Panel

4:30 p.m. Service Trip Returns No Place Like Home: Environmental Justice on the Front Lines of Climate
Change CLE Approved
7:00 p.m. Pre-Screening Wine Reception Location: Audubon Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center

Location: Loyola University New Orleans, College of Law, Room 405 12:10 p.m. Lunch Keynote: John M. Barry, Author, Rising Tide: The Great Mississippi
526 Pine Street, New Orleans, LA 70118 Flood of 1927 and How It Changed America

7:30 p.m. Film Screening of “Tapped” Introduction by Mona Eubanks, President, Loyola Maritime Law Society
Location: St. Charles Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center
“Tapped” examines the role of the bottled water industry and its effects on health,
climate change, pollution and reliance on oil. The screening is jointly sponsored by 1:15 p.m. Panels
the Tulane Environmental Law Society and is free and open to the public.
A: Toward a Sustainable Future: Finding the Most Sustainable Approaches to
Location: Loyola University New Orleans, College of Law, Room 405 Land Use Decision Making
526 Pine Street, New Orleans, LA 70118 Location: Audubon Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center

B: International Law: Copenhagen and Beyond CLE Approved


Location: Miller Hall, Room 114

2:30 p.m. Break

3:00 p.m. Panels

A: Know What It Means to Be New Orleans: A Geographical, Historical, and


Contemporary Examination of the Big Easy
Location: Audubon Room, Joseph A.Danna Student Center
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9:30 a.m. Panel
B: Energy and Economics: The Intersection of Wealth, Watts, and Weather -
CLE Approved Staying Afloat: Adapting to Climate Change on the Gulf and Beyond -
Location: St. Charles Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center CLE Approved
Location: Audubon Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center
4:30 p.m. Break
10:45 a.m. Break
5:00 p.m. Cocktail/Jazz Reception
11:00 a.m. Panels
Location: Entertainment Patio, Joseph A. Danna Student Center
A: Ecosystem Services: The Unexpected Lagniappe
6:15 p.m. Keynote: Richard Louv - Author, Last Child in the Woods: Saving our Children Location: Audubon Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center
from Nature-Deficit Disorder
B: Environmental Justice Policy - CLE Approved
Introduction by Whitford Remer, Chair, 2010 National Association of Location: St. Charles Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center
Environmental Law Societies Conference
Location: Nunemaker Auditorium, 3rd Floor, Monroe Hall 12:30 p.m. Lunch Keynote: F. Gerald Maples - Founder, F. Gerald Maples, P.A.

7:00 p.m. Closing Remarks Introduction by Samuel Steinmetz, Assistant Director, Loyola Center for
Environmental Law and Land Use
Location: St. Charles Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center
Saturday, March 6 1:45 p.m. Panels
8:00 a.m. Registration Opens
A: Trouble the Water: How Climate Change Affects the Hydrologic Cycle -
Location: Joseph A. Danna Student Center, main campus CLE Approved
Loyola University New Orleans Location:St. Charles Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center
6363 St. Charles Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70118.
B: Regulation and Science: The Backbone of Effective Environmental
8:10 a.m. Opening Invocation Protection - CLE Approved
Location:St. Charles Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center
Alison McCrary, Cabinet Director, Mission and Identity, Loyola College of Law
Location: St. Charles Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center 3:00 p.m. Break

8:15 a.m. Welcoming Remarks 3:15 p.m. Panels

James R. May, Law Student Outreach, American Bar Association, Section of A: Branching Out: Federalism, Constitutional Issues, and the Political
Energy Environment and Resources Question Doctrine - CLE Approved
Location: St. Charles Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center Location: Audubon Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center

8:30 a.m. Breakfast Keynote: Michael B. Gerrard - Director, Center for Climate Change B: Man or the Environment: Hard Choices in Southern Louisiana
Law, Columbia Law School - CLE Approved Location: St. Charles Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center

Introduction by James May, Law Student Outreach, American Bar Association, 5:00 p.m. Dinner Keynote: Amory B. Lovins - Cofounder, Rocky Mountain Institute
Section of Energy Environment and Resources
Location: St. Charles Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center Introduction by Dan Worth, Executive Director, National Association of
Environmental Law Societies
Location: St. Charles Room, Joseph A. Danna Student Center

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Main Campus Map
Sunday, March 7 Loyola University New Orleans
10:00 a.m. Field Trip

Meet at Loyola for a tour of the historic Lower 9th Ward, Make It Right, Global
Green, and Andy Street Warf.

Led by Darryl Malek-Wiley, Sierra Club Environmental Justice Organizer. Co-


sponsored by the Loyola National Lawyers Guild.

Location: Field Trip Shuttle will depart from the horseshoe-parking circle located at
the front of the main campus of Loyola University
6363 St. Charles Avenue, New Orleans, LA 70118. Lunch will be provided.

2:00 p.m. Field Trip Returns



Conference adjourned. See y’all next year!

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2

Arrow 1: Danna Student Center, Main Campus


Arrow 2: Horseshoe-Parking Circle
Arrow 3: Nunemaker Auditorium Monroe Hall
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The Environmental Law Society would like to the following for
supporting the 2010 NAELS Conference:

Dean Brian Bromberger and


The Office of the Dean, Loyola College of Law

With additional support from:


A Friend of Loyola College of Law

Mark and Monica Suprenant