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Where Federalism and Globalization Intersect: The Western Climate Initiative as a Model for Cross-Border Collaboration Among States and Provinces

November 2008

Citation: ELR 10796

Author: Jeremy Lawrence

Editors' Summary: This Article explores the legal and practical issues that arise where globalization and federalism intersect. A number of states and provinces in the western part of North America have joined together to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through a cap-and-trade program. The agreement passes scrutiny under the U.S. Constitution because it is essentially a voluntary measure intended to strengthen traditional forms of domestic environmental regulation. Though such strong cross-border measures have never been implemented before, they are a novel tool for dealing with regulatory issues that will increasingly arise as federalism and globalization intersect more often in the future.

Jeremy Lawrence is a third-year law student at the University of Southern California Law School. This Article was the winner of the Environmental Law Institute's 2008 Endangered Environmental Laws writing competition. For information on the competition, see http://www.eli.org.

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