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Land Use

Planning for the Effects of Climate Change on Natural Resources

Climate change has important implications for the management and conservation of natural resources and public lands. The federal agencies responsible for managing these resources have generally recognized that considerations pertaining...

Mineral Estate Conservation Easements: A New Policy Instrument to Address Hydraulic Fracturing and Resource Extraction

The rise of high-volume hydraulic fracturing has been accompanied by a suite of environmental and social concerns, including potential water and air contamination, greenhouse gas emissions, health effects, and community disruptions....

The Bear Essentials: How Landscape-Level Conservation May Help Save Florida’s Biodiversity and Realize the Vision of the National Wildlife Refuge System Improvement Act

The express mission of the National Wildlife Refuge System “is to administer a national network of lands and waters for conservation, management, and where appropriate, restoration of the fish, wildlife and plant resources and their...

Whose Coast Is It Anyway? Climate Change, Shoreline Armoring, and the Public’s Right to Access the California Coast

The public trust doctrine provides that a state holds its tidelands, submerged lands, and navigable waters in trust for the benefit of the general public. California has codified the principles of this doctrine through various statutes...

Infrastructure Permit Streamlining Under the FAST Act

In December 2015, the U.S. Congress passed and President Barack Obama signed the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act, the first multi-year federal transportation bill enacted in a decade. Almost unnoticed among nearly 500...

National Forest Management: The Contested Use of Collaboration and Litigation

Litigation over national forest management has received substantial attention from members of Congress who claim that “environmental obstructionists” are abusing the legal system; conversely, litigants criticize the U.S. Forest Service’...

Resilience and Raisins: Partial Takings and Coastal Climate Change Adaptation

The increased need for government-driven coastal resilience projects will lead to a growing number of claims for “partial takings” of coastal property. Much attention has been paid to what actions constitute a partial taking, but there...

Shoreline Armoring and the Public Trust Doctrine: Balancing Public and Private Interests as Seas Rise

Coastal landowners have an acute interest in armoring the shoreline by erecting barriers to protect their property from inundation and erosion. One problem with armoring is that the barrier potentially destroys coastal wetlands and...

Enhancing the Urban Environment Through Green Infrastructure

This Article is adapted from Chapter Seven of John R. Nolon, Protecting the Environment Through Land Use Law: Standing Ground, published by ELI Press. The book describes how localities are responding to new challenges,...

BLM’s Federal Lands Fracking Rule: Merits and Ramifications

On March 20, 2015, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) issued a final rule regulating hydraulic fracturing on federal and Indian lands. The new regulations will require public disclosure of chemicals used in fracking fluids, higher...