Publications

Plastic Production in SIDS: Case Studies of Five Small Island Developing States

Recognizing the need to address the growing global plastics crisis, the international community has begun the process of developing an international legally binding instrument on plastic pollution, which has the potential to impact domestic activities surrounding plastic production. Up until now, however, there has been a notable lack of information on the role that Small …

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Plastic Production in SIDS: Preliminary Data on the Role of Small Island Developing States in Global Plastic Production

Recognizing the need to address the growing global plastics crisis, the international community has begun the process of developing an international legally binding instrument on plastic pollution, which has the potential to impact domestic activities surrounding plastic production. Up until now, however, there has been a notable lack of information on the role that Small …

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Breaking Down Urban Organics: Lessons from San Francisco’s Organics Program and Implications for New York City

The current efforts of the New York City Department of Sanitation (DSNY) to reduce the volume of organics sent to landfills focus on encouraging people to voluntarily separate their organics from recyclables and other waste. Most notably, in August 2022, DSNY announced that it will offer curbside organics collection throughout Queens between October and December …

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Policy Brief – Equitable Electrification: Could City and State Policies Aggravate Energy Insecurity?

Progressive cities and states have begun enacting policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from buildings, one of the leading sources of such emissions in the United States. The same jurisdictions have also generally committed to pursuing decarbonization equitably, without exacerbating the disadvantages faced by historically marginalized communities. Electrification is currently a favored policy for decarbonizing …

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Beyond Gas Bans: Alternative Pathways to Reduce Building Emissions in Light of State Preemption Laws

At the federal level, opportunities to advance emissions reductions from buildings have expanded due to the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act, which aims to speed the nation’s transition to carbon-free energy sources. However, many municipalities have seen their powers to steer building decarbonization curtailed in recent years. Notably, between 2020 and 2021, 20 states …

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Equitable Electrification: Could City and State Policies Aggravate Energy Insecurity?

Progressive cities and states have begun enacting policies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from buildings, one of the leading sources of such emissions in the United States. The same jurisdictions have also generally committed to pursuing decarbonization equitably, without exacerbating the disadvantages faced by historically marginalized communities. Electrification is currently a favored policy for decarbonizing …

Equitable Electrification: Could City and State Policies Aggravate Energy Insecurity? Read More »

Impact Fees in NYC? A Summary of Potential Sources of Legal Authority, Constraints, and Options

New development offers a variety of potential social and economic benefits for New York City. At the same time, new development puts additional pressure on the local environment, including on critical physical and social infrastructure, much of which is already overburdened and in need of upgrades. In this context, some have called upon the City …

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Following the Money: The Role of Penalties in Encouraging Compliance with Building Performance Standards

In response to growing public concerns about climate change, many American cities have begun to set goals for reducing energy usage, decreasing reliance on non-renewable energy sources, and helping building owners upgrade inefficient properties. To aid in this transition, several jurisdictions have created Building Performance Standards (BPSs). BPSs regulate either greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions or …

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Ownership of Environmental Attributes in the Energy World

Since commercial drilling for oil and gas began in the United States in the nineteenth century, the idea that the first party to capture oil and gas owns them has played a role in determining who initially owns these resources. This article, which appears in the American Bar Association’s July/August 2022 issue of Trends, describes …

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