Past Events

Federal Water Policy Outlook During the 117th Congress

Thursday, March 18, 2021 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. via Zoom

Matthew Muirragui serves as the majority staff director for the Subcommittee on Water, Oceans, and Wildlife in the US House of Representatives. He manages staff work for Natural Resources Committee democrats on issues relating to water resource management, drought resilience, tribal water rights, river and ecosystem restoration, and hydropower issues. He regularly provides policy and strategic advice for democratic members of congress and helps develop and advance legislation within the jurisdiction of the Water, Oceans, and Wildlife subcommittee.

In additional to his work on the subcommittee, he leads the Natural Resources Committee’s staff work on environmental justice and environmental permitting issues. Prior to his work on Capitol Hill, he was a political campaign manager and fundraiser, which included a one-year stint living in California’s San Joaquin Valley while working on a congressional campaign. He holds a BA from the College of William and Mary.


Rising to Resilience-Can California Do What it Takes?

Monday, March 01, 2021 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. via Zoom

Felicia Marcus is an attorney/consultant who has served in positions in government, the non-profit world, and the private sector. She is currently the Landreth Visiting Fellow at Stanford University’s Woods Institute Water in the West Program and a Fellow of the National Academy of Public Administration. She is also a member of the Water Policy Group, an international network of former and current high level water officials dedicated to assisting developing nations.

Felicia was most recently Chair of the California State Water Resources Control Board during the state’s worst drought in modern history. She previously served as Regional Administrator of the U.S. EPA Region IX and as head of the Los Angeles Department of Public Works in addition to leadership in national non-governmental organizations. She has a JD from NYU School of Law, an AB cum laude in East Asian Studies from Harvard College, and attended Hong Kong University.


Sustainable Groundwater Management: Considering All Beneficial Users

Wednesday, February 24, 2021 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. via Zoom

Sandi Matsumoto is The Nature Conservancy’s Director of the California Water Program. She leads a multi-disciplinary team focused on securing a sustainable and resilient water future for California. The Water Program is working to secure the wintering grounds of the Pacific Flyway, to revive healthy rivers to sustain salmon, and to advance sustainable groundwater management that ensures drinking water for people and supports nature.

During her 16 years with TNC, she has worked at the nexus of water and agriculture across the state, including by launching BirdReturns and TNC’s efforts to implement the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act. A Central Valley native, she earned her B.A. from Yale University and M.B.A. from the Anderson School at UCLA. In 2017, she was appointed by Governor Brown to serve as a board member on the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Conservancy. She was a member of the first cohort of the Water Solutions Network and a member of the Water Leaders class of 2005.


California Water in 2021: Embracing the 21st Century and Reconciling the 20th

Wednesday, January 27, 2021 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. via Zoom

E. Joaquin Esquivel was appointed to the State Water Resources Control Board by Governor Jerry Brown in March 2017 and designated by Governor Gavin Newsom as Chair in February 2019. Previously, he served as Assistant Secretary for federal water policy at the California Natural Resources Agency in the Governor’s Washington, D.C. office, where he facilitated the development of policy priorities between the agency, the Governor’s Office, the California Congressional delegation, and federal stakeholder agencies.

For more than eight years prior to that he worked for U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer of California, most recently as her legislative assistant covering the agriculture, Native American, water, oceans, and nutrition portfolios, in addition to being the director of information and technology.

He was born and raised in California’s Coachella Valley. He holds a BA from the University of California, Santa Barbara in English.

View a recording of the event.


Protecting Lake Tahoe: The View from the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency

Wednesday, November 4, 2020 – Zoom Event

Bill Yeates, Chair of the TRPA Governing Board

The Lake Tahoe watershed crosses two state and numerous local political boundaries. Thus, the TRPA Governing Board is comprised of 15-members—seven from California, seven from Nevada and one non-voting Presidential Appointee.

I arrived in California from Michigan in 1975 to attend law school at the University of the Pacific’s McGeorge School of Law in Sacramento, CA.  As soon as I got settled one of the first places I wanted to see was Lake Tahoe.  I had spent my childhood summers visiting with my grandparents in Jackson, Wyoming.  My late mother’s summer home was on the JY Ranch; and, Phelps Lake on the JY at the base of Death Canyon in the Grand Tetons was one of her favorite memories.  During this period of time in my mother’s childhood my grandfather was working to expand the boundaries of Grand Teton National Park.  Because of this personal heritage, I have an affinity for crystal clear alpine lakes.  The Sierra’s Lake Tahoe was a natural draw.

In March 2013 I applied to the California Senate Rules Committee to be a Governing Board Member of TRPA, because I felt my personal environmental perspective; experience working for the California Coastal Commission; and, more recently, working with diverse interests groups during the passage of Senate Bill 375 (CA Sustainable Communities Program) was a nice fit.  I worked for the Coastal Commission during a particularly challenging time as the Commission was mandated to work with local coastal communities to prepare local coastal programs that when approved by the Commission returned land use authority within the coastal zone to the local agencies with Commission oversight.  This shared approach to protecting the public’s interest in California’s coast is similar to the area plan approval process within the recently adopted 2012 Regional Plan for Lake Tahoe.

I hope that I can contribute to the environmental sustainability of Lake Tahoe by approving area plans that when implemented achieve the environmental thresholds for protecting Lake Tahoe.  I also believe that TRPA can implement the 2012 Regional Plan in a way that provides for sustainable communities that meet the economic and social needs of the people that live and work in the Tahoe Basin.  It will be a challenge, but a challenge worth taking on.


Making Environmental Law Great Again: Defending the Trump Administration’s Energy and Environmental Agenda in the Federal Appellate Courts

Wednesday, October 7, 2020 –Zoom Event

Eric Grant,  Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Environment & Natural Resources Division of the USDOJ

Eric Grant currently serves as a non-career Deputy Assistant Attorney General in the Environment and Natural Resources Division of the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, D.C.  In that capacity, he supervises the Division’s appellate and Indian-related litigation, including personally arguing in federal courts of appeals and district courts around the country and contributing to the Solicitor General’s filings in the Supreme Court.

 Mr. Grant obtained his undergraduate degree in economics in 1986 and his law degree in 1990, both from the University of California, Berkeley.  Following law school, Mr. Grant served as a law clerk to Judge Edith H. Jones of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit in Houston, Texas.  During the Supreme Court’s October 1994 Term, he served as a law clerk to both Retired Chief Justice Warren E. Burger and Associate Justice Clarence Thomas.

During the remainder of his 30-year legal career, Mr. Grant has worked as a line attorney in DOJ’s Office of Legal Counsel and at the Pacific Legal Foundation, as an associate in an international law firm, as a solo practitioner, and as head of the Sacramento office of a Houston law firm.  He has briefed and argued cases in the U.S. Supreme Court, the California Supreme Court, and numerous other federal and state appellate courts.


Impact Litigation to Protect the Environment, Public Health & Civil Rights: The View From the San Francisco City Attorney’s Office

Thursday September 17, 2020 – Zoom Event

Dennis Herrera, San Francisco City Attorney

The first Latino ever elected as San Francisco City Attorney, Dennis Herrera leads an office that has spearheaded cases of national importance on civil rights, affordable healthcare and environmental protection while remaining a tough and effective advocate for San Francisco’s neighborhoods, working families and underprivileged.

In his role as San Francisco’s advocate, Herrera filed the first ever government lawsuit to challenge the constitutionality of state marriage laws that discriminate against gay and lesbian couples, and his office was centrally involved in the nearly decade-long battle that successfully won marriage equality in California.

Herrera also brought the first legal challenge to President Donald Trump’s executive order that tried to strip federal funding from sanctuary cities. Herrera won a nationwide halt to enforcement of the order, protecting funding for programs that provide food, health care and housing assistance to low-income families, seniors and people with disabilities.

On major consumer protection cases, Herrera and his team have brought marketplace scofflaws to justice, winning millions in restitution for victims and taxpayers, protecting honest competitors who play by the rules, and securing injunctions to end unlawful practices.  Herrera has consistently taken an activist approach to his City Attorney’s role: not only serving city government clients but using the power of law to make a difference in the lives of the people his office serves.


Centering Racial Equity in Environmental Law Enforcement

Tuesday September 10, 2020 - Zoom Event

Suma Peesapati, Assistant General Counsel for Enforcement, CalEPA , & Guest Professor for Environmental Justice at King Hall

Suma Peesapati was appointed by Governor Gavin Newsom in 2019 to serve as Assistant General Counsel for Enforcement at the California Environmental Protection Agency. She has more than twenty years of experience practicing law in the private, nonprofit and public sectors, specializing in environmental law.

Prior to her appointment, Suma was a Deputy Attorney General with the California Attorney General’s Bureau of Environmental Justice where she focused on environmental enforcement in low-income communities and communities of color. In 2017, she founded Peesapati Law, a plaintiff’s environmental law firm in San Diego. From 2015 to 2017, she was a visiting assistant professor and an attorney at the University of California, Irvine’s Environmental Law Clinic, where she introduced a state law focus to the curriculum and clinic’s docket. Earlier in her career she practiced law in the San Francisco Bay Area as a staff attorney with Earthjustice, as an associate attorney with Adams Broadwell Joseph and Cardozo, and as a staff attorney and an Equal Justice Works Fellow with Communities for a Better Environment.

Suma holds a Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Arts from the University of California, Berkeley and a law degree from the University of California, Hastings School of Law. Peesapati is an advisor to the Executive Committee of the California Lawyers Association’s Environmental Law Section.

No recording available


"Chefs in the Courtroom: How Laws Shape the Meaning of Food"

Tuesday April 7, 2020 - Zoom Event -

Professor Steph Tai, Visiting Professor, University of Wisconsin Law School

Steph Tai is a professor at the University of Wisconsin Law School.  Her scholarly research examines the interactions between environmental and health sciences and administrative, environmental, and food law.  These include the consideration of scientific expertise and environmental justice concerns by administrative and judicial systems, and as well as the role of scientific dialogues in food systems regulation and private food systems governance.

Visiting Professor this semester at UC Davis School of Law


Civil Rights, CEQA and Climate Change

Wednesday February 26, 2020 - Noon to One Room 1002

Jennifer L. Hernandez, Partner, Holland & Knight, San Francisco

Jennifer Hernandez has practiced land use and environmental law for more than 30 years, and leads Holland & Knight's West Coast Land Use and Environmental Group. Ms. Hernandez divides her time between the firm's San Francisco and Los Angeles offices.

Ms. Hernandez is the only California lawyer ranked by her clients and peers in Chambers USA in the top tier of both land use/zoning and environmental lawyers. In addition, she was recognized as the top environmental litigator of the year in the San Francisco Bay Area by Best Lawyers, and received a California Lawyer of the Year award from the State Bar of California for her work on California's largest and most innovative land use and conservation agreement between her private landowner client and five major environmental organizations, including the Sierra Club and Natural Resources Defense Council. She also has received numerous civil rights awards for her work on overcoming environmentalist opposition to housing and other projects needed and supported by minority communities.

View a recording of the event. 


Leading U.S. DOJ’s Legal Initiatives in the Eastern District of California--Including Protection of Federal Lands and Environment Resources

Thursday February 13, 2020 - Noon to One Room 1301

McGregor “Greg” Scott, U.S. Attorney, Eastern District of California

A discussion about the roles and responsibilities of the U.S. Attorney and their priorities, including our environmental protection efforts, focusing on the damage being done to the national forests by the illegal marijuana grows.

On March 7, 2018, McGregor W. Scott was confirmed by the U.S. Senate to be the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of California. He was nominated for the position by President Donald J. Trump.

Mr. Scott was sworn in as the Court-appointed U.S. Attorney on December 29, 2017. He returned to the position he held from 2003 to 2009 when he was appointed U.S. Attorney by President George W. Bush.

Mr. Scott received his B.A. from Santa Clara University in 1985 and his J.D. from Hastings College of the Law, University of California, in 1989. He served as a deputy district attorney from 1989 to 1997 in Contra Costa County, California, and served as the elected District Attorney of Shasta County, California, from 1997 to 2003. After completing his first term as U.S. Attorney, Mr. Scott practiced as a partner with the law firm of Orrick, Herrington, & Sutcliffe LLP, focusing on white collar criminal defense and corporate investigations. In addition, Mr. Scott retired in 2008 from the U.S. Army Reserve as a lieutenant colonel after 23 years of service.

The U.S. Attorney serves as the chief federal law enforcement officer for the Eastern District of California and is responsible for prosecuting federal criminal cases and representing the United States in civil litigation. The Eastern District covers 34 counties throughout the Central Valley and the Sierras, from the Oregon border in the north to the Los Angeles County line in the south. The office has 92 attorneys and 81 non-attorney staff with offices in Sacramento, Fresno, and Bakersfield.

View a recording of the event.


Too Many Climate Solutions

Wednesday, November 20, 2019 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. King Hall Rm. 1002

Ken Alex has been called California’s most influential environmental lawyer, a visionary, and former governor Jerry Brown’s climate whisperer. He is now joining Berkeley Law’s Center for Law, Energy & the Environment (CLEE) to spearhead Project Climate—a new initiative driven to transform top research into policy more quickly.

Under Brown, Alex chaired the state’s Strategic Growth Council, which links economic growth with climate sustainability, and directed the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research. He has traveled worldwide to forge alliances and environmental agreements for California, advancing reform on issues from pollution and flame-retardant home products to solar energy and greenhouse gas emissions.

Alex goes way back with CLEE, serving on its first advisory board and working for its first executive director (Richard Frank) at the Attorney General’s Office.


Litigating Climate Change: California Local Governments Turn Up the Heat on the Energy Industry

Wednesday, October 30, 2019 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. King Hall Rm. 1002

Vic Sher represents public agencies as plaintiffs in high impact environmental lawsuits. He is currently the lead outside lawyer for ten public agencies in climate change damages cases brought by cities, counties, and a state, as well as an association of commercial fishermen, against the fossil fuel industry; his clients include San Francisco, Baltimore, and the State of Rhode Island. For much of the last two decades, Vic’s practice focused solely on representing public water suppliers and other public agencies in lawsuits against the manufacturers of toxic chemicals polluting drinking water sources; his non-climate docket continues these kinds of cases. In 2009, Vic served as New York City’s lead trial counsel in City of New York v. ExxonMobil, a federal jury trial over MTBE contamination that resulted in a verdict for the City of $104.7 million. Before entering private practice in 1998 Vic practiced with the public interest law firm Earthjustice from 1986 until 1997, including as its President from 1994 to 1997. Vic was named one of the top lawyers in America in 2011 by LawDragon, and a Northern California Super Lawyer since 2005. He is a 1980 graduate of Stanford Law School, where he was a member of the Law Review.


Does the Law Protect Climate Change Researchers?

Tuesday, October 15, 2019 12:10 - 1:45 p.m. King Hall Rm. 1301

The Polar Forum is a John Muir Institute of the Environment Initiative at UC Davis. PI is John Muir Fellow and professor in Department of Wildlife, Fish & Conservation Biology, Eric Post.

By highlighting the Polar Regions as an exemplar of the urgency of climate change, the Polar Forum strengthens the role of UC Davis as a world leader in environmental education.

We strive to engage the public in polar research and education to foster awareness of climate change impacts on the unique natural, cultural, and societal features of the Polar Regions.

Please receive the registration link

For more information, please contact Pernille Sporon Boving at


One Gen Solutions to the Climate Catastrophe

Wednesday, October 2, 2019 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. King Hall Rm. 1002

Solutions necessary to survive a rapidly changing climate must quickly be put into policy and action to prevent ecological and social catastrophe. Terry will talk about the challenges, policy-driven high value solutions within reach and hopeful examples of leadership, land use practices and emerging technology.

Terry Watt leads results-driven initiatives focused on climate-resilient solutions for the biggest challenges of our time, many made more acute by a changing climate. She brings extensive planning, facilitation and public outreach experience to her clients, collaborations and volunteer Projects including adoption of state policies supporting local action necessary to achieve climate goals, clean and renewable energy in appropriate locations, safe and accessible communities for all, and a wide range of conservation planning efforts that have resulted in agreements to permanently protect important landscapes in over half of California’s counties.


California Emerging Energy Issues

Tuesday, September 24, 2019 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. King Hall Rm. 1002

Martha Guzman Aceves was appointed Commissioner at the CPUC by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. on Dec. 28, 2016. She has focused on issues related to fuel switching, broadband access, water affordability, access to distributed solar and various other energy and telecommunications issues. She previously served as deputy legislative affairs secretary in the Office of the Governor since 2011, focusing on natural resources, environmental protection, energy and food and agriculture. She was sustainable communities program director for the California Rural Legal Assistance Foundation from 2005 to 2011. From 2006 to 2008, she worked with Swanton Berry Farm on human resources issues including a new employee-stock ownership program. She was legislative coordinator for United Farm Workers from 1999 to 2005, working on labor and environmental issues. In 2010, she co-founded Communities for a New California, a charitable organization promoting increased civic engagement of underrepresented communities. Guzman Aceves earned a Master of Science degree in agricultural and resource economics from the University of California, Davis, and a Bachelor of Science in International Economics from Georgetown University.


The Ocean's Role in Sustainable Food Production

Monday, September 16, 2019 8:00 a.m. - 6:30 p.m. and Tuesday, September 17, 2019 8:00 a.m. - 2:45 p.m. Robert Mondavi Institute, Silverado Vineyard Sensory Theater

Our symposium will present the current scientific, economic, social, and governance issues surrounding the ocean’s role in global food production and explore potential impacts of climate change on these functions and processes.


  • Commercial fisheries management
  • Aquaculture development
  • Marine inputs in aquaculture and agriculture
  • Forage fisheries management and conservation

Watch the livestream of UC Davis's Ocean's Role in Sustainable Food Production

This symposium is co-sponsored by the following:

The UC Davis Sustainable Oceans National Research Training Program NSF NRT Grant # 1734999. 


The California Legislature's Environmental Priorities for 2019 and Beyond

Wednesday, April 3, 2019 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. King Hall Rm. 1002

Senator Henry Stern is a sixth-generation Californian. He credits his passion for public service as a family trait, whose diverse history includes farming and ranching, music and film, and a steadfast commitment to helping young people fulfill their potential. Senator Stern was elected to represent the 27th Senate District, which includes parts of Los Angeles and Ventura counties, on November 8, 2016. Senator Stern has also lectured at UCLA and UC Berkeley, is a member of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy Advisory Committee. He is an alumnus of Harvard University and UC Berkeley Law.


The Future of California Housing: Equitable TOD

Wednesday, March 20, 2019 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. King Hall Rm. 1002

Meea Kang is a leader in affordable housing and transit-oriented development. She has successfully developed multiple award-winning, projects that exemplify social responsibility and sustainable design. Ms. Kang is an expert in navigating California's complex land use entitlement processes, forging innovative public-private partnerships, and structuring multi-layered financing bringing difficult projects to fruition. Prior to joining Related California, Ms. Kang was President and Co-Founder of Domus Development, LLC where she led the company's development activities for fifteen years. In 2016, Governor Brown appointed Ms. Kang to serve on the California Commission on Aging. She is founding board member for the Council of Infill Builders and a Trustee for the California Museum.

She earned a Master of Architecture from the University of California, Berkeley and a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Cornell University.


Environmental Litigation Post-Trump

Wednesday, February 6, 2019 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. King Hall Rm. 1002

Ian Fein is a staff attorney on the litigation team at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). Before joining NRDC, Ian clerked on the Ninth Circuit, D.C. Circuit, and U.S. Supreme Court. He holds a bachelor's degree in English and a J.D. from the University of California, Berkeley, where he served as editor-in-chief of the California Law Review.

Mr. Fein will discuss litigation during the Trump era, but he will also discuss the changed landscape of the federal judiciary and what that might mean for the future of environmental law.


Effective Public Participation and Engagement on Environmental Issues

Wednesday, January 23, 2019 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. King Hall Rm. 1002

Alana Mathews was appointed by Governor Jerry Brown as the Public Advisor for the California Energy Commission in 2013 and reappointed in 2016. She provides procedural guidance to ensure the fair and adequate participation of interested parties and members of the public in all Commission proceedings. She served as the project manager for the Senate Bill 350 Clean Energy and Pollution Reduction Act Barriers Study, and is the coordinator for the Senate Bill 350 Disadvantaged Communities Advisory Group. Additionally, she leads the efforts to implement the Energy Commission's Diversity Initiative and Assembly Bill 865 Empower California Initiative which seeks to increase participation of minority-, women-, disabled veteran- and LGBTQ-owned businesses and businesses in disadvantaged, rural, and tribal communities in Commission funding opportunities. She is a former Deputy District Attorney for Sacramento County and served as the 2004 Graduate Legal Scholar Executive Fellow for the California Attorney's General Office.

She earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Philosophy from Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia. She also earned a J.D. and a LL.M in Governmental Affairs and Public Policy from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law.


Effective Public Participation and Engagement on Environmental Issues

Tuesday, November 20, 2018 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. King Hall Rm. 1002

Alana Mathews was appointed by Governor Jerry Brown as the Public Adviser for the California Energy Commission in 2013 and reappointed in 2016.  She provides procedural guidance to ensure the fair and adequate participation of interested parties and members of the public in all Commission proceedings.  She served as the project manager for the Senate Bill 350 Clean Energy and Pollution Reduction Act Barriers Study, and is the coordinator for the Senate Bill 350 Disadvantaged Communities Advisory Group.  Additionally, she leads the efforts to implement the Energy Commission’s Diversity Initiative and Assembly Bill 865 Empower California Initiative which seeks to increase participation of minority-, women-, disabled veteran- and LGBTQ-owned businesses and businesses in disadvantaged, rural, and tribal communities in Commission funding opportunities.  She is a former Deputy District Attorney for Sacramento County and served as the 2004 Graduate Legal Scholar Executive Fellow for the California Attorney's General Office.

She earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Philosophy from Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia. She also earned a Juris Doctor (J.D.) and a Master of Laws (LL.M) in Governmental Affairs and Public from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law.


Confronting the Looming Water Challenges in California & the American West

Wednesday, October 17, 2018 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. King Hall Rm. 1002

Jeffrey Mount is a senior fellow at the PPIC Water Policy Center. He is an emeritus professor at UC Davis in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences and founding director of the Center for Watershed Sciences. A geomorphologist who specializes in the study of rivers, streams, and wetlands, his research focuses on integrated water resource management, flood management, and improving aquatic ecosystem health. He has served on many state and federal boards and commissions that address water resource management issues in the West. He has published more than a hundred articles, books, and other publications, including the seminal book California Rivers and Streams (UC Press). He holds a PhD and MS in earth sciences from the University of California, Santa Cruz.


Reining in the Administrative State and Opening the Courthouse Doors: The Promise of the Supreme Court's 2018 Term

Wednesday, September 26, 2018 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. King Hall Rm. 1002

Damien is currently a Senior Attorney at Pacific Legal Foundation and he joined PLF in 2005.  His practice has focused on federal and state environmental and land-use issues. Damien was counsel of record in Sackett v. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, a groundbreaking decision in which the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the right of landowners to challenge Clean Water Act compliance orders issued by the Environmental Protection Agency. Damien’s work also has focused on direct litigation and friend-of-the-court briefs in cases arising under the federal and California Endangered Species Acts, as well as the California Coastal Act. He has appeared on a variety of television and radio programs, and has been quoted in The EconomistThe New York Times, and The Wall Street Journal, among other publications.

A recording of this event may be accessed HERE


The California Attorney General's Office – Working to Protect Californians and Our Environment

Monday, September 10, 2018 12:00 - 1:00 p.m. King Hall Rm. 1002

Angela Sierra is the Chief Assistant Attorney General of the Public Rights Division within the California Department of Justice. As the Chief Assistant, Ms. Sierra oversees the Division’s ten practice areas: Environmental Law, including Environmental Justice, Natural Resources, Land Law, Antitrust, Consumer Protection, Corporate Fraud, Charitable Trusts, Civil Rights Enforcement, Indian & Gaming Law and Tobacco Litigation and Enforcement. Ms. Sierra has been a lawyer in theDepartment of Justice for over 31 years, previously served as the Senior Assistant Attorney General who oversaw the Department’s Civil Rights Enforcement Section, and has extensive investigatory and litigation experience, and is a seasoned appellate advocate.

Ms. Sierra obtained her J.D. from the University of California at Los Angeles and her B.A. from the University of California at Santa Barbara.

*Recording unavailable for public viewing


Celebrating the Publication of Professor Lesley McAllister’s Festschrift

Tuesday, May 15, 2018 5:00 - 7:00 p.m. UC Davis School of Law

Please join us for a reception celebrating the life and academic legacy of Professor Lesley McAllister hosted by University of California, Davis School of Law.

In January 2017, Lesley’s peers from UC Davis, as well as other universities, gathered in San Francisco for a Festschrift. Academic colleagues from the United States and around the globe attended the event and spoke lovingly and thoughtfully about Lesley’s stellar academic career, brilliant research, and incisive scholarship.  As we continue to mourn Lesley’s passing, the editors and staff of Environs, UC Davis School of Law's Journal of Environmental Law and Policy, are honored to publish the Festschrift remarks in the Spring 2018 issue.

Print copies of Lesley’s Festschrift will be available at the event. Light hors d'oeuvres and refreshments will be served. Kindly RSVP here.

The Lesley McAllister Scholarship Fund was established in the Fall of 2017. A link to the scholarship website is here, which provides further information and an opportunity to contribute online:

Parking is available immediately adjacent to the building. Other questions may be directed to CELPC Fellow Olivia Filbrandt at or 530.570.0692.


The California Legislature's Environmental Priorities for 2018 and Beyond

Thursday, April 12th Noon-1:00 P.M. King Hall Rm. 1301

Senator Henry Stern is a sixth-generation Californian and native of this district. He credits his passion for public service as a family trait, whose diverse history includes farming and ranching, music and film, and a steadfast commitment to helping young people fulfill their potential. Senator Stern was elected to represent the 27th Senate District, which includes parts of Los Angeles and Ventura counties, on November 8, 2016.

Senator Stern has also lectured at UCLA and UC Berkeley, is a member of the Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy Advisory Committee. He is an alumnus of Harvard University and UC Berkeley Law.


California Department of Fish and Wildlife: State Natural Resources Law, Tradition, and Change

Wednesday, April 4th Noon-1:00 P.M. King Hall Rm. 1002

Wendy Bogdan is the General Counsel for the California Department of Fish and Wildlife. In that capacity, she oversees the Office of General Counsel, which includes approximately twenty-six attorneys, as well as the legal team for the Office of Spill Prevention and Response.  Collectively, these attorneys practice in natural resources law, water law, public contracting law, personnel, real estate law, and public financing law. 

She has a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology from the University of California, Berkeley and a juris doctorate from the University of California, Berkeley, School of Law (Boalt Hall).  Prior to joining the Department, Ms. Bogdan was a partner at Downey Brand LLP and a Staff Attorney at Legal Services of Northern California.

A recording of this event may be accessed here. Questions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


'The Right to Zero' and Battling the Trump Administration

Thursday, March 29th Noon-1:00 P.M. King Hall Rm. 1002

Ms. Geis will discuss Earthjustice’s “Right to Zero” campaign, designed to eliminate greenhouse gas emissions through clean energy and clean transportation reforms, and Earthjustice’s multifaceted efforts to resist the Trump Administration’s anti-environmental initiatives in California.

Stacey Geis is the managing attorney of California Regional Office for Earthjustice, the nationwide and largest public interest environmental law organization in the country. Stacey joined Earthjustice in 2014 after spending over 10 years prosecuting corporate crimes, with a focus on environmental crimes, at the U.S. Attorney’s Office in San Francisco. Her work included criminally prosecuting PG&E for a large explosion that killed 8 people in San Bruno, CA and criminally prosecuting the shipping company and the bar pilot who caused the 2007 Cosco Busan oil spill in the San Francisco Bay.  She was the senior prosecutor for the California Circuit Prosecutor Project. Prior to working for the government, Stacey was an associate of Pillsbury, Madison & Sutro. Daily Journal named her one of California’s Top 100 Lawyers and she received the 2014 California Lawyer Attorney of the Year award. Stacey is a graduate of Brown University and the University of Virginia School of Law. Stacey clerked for the Hon. Samuel Conti of the Northern District of CA. Stacey is an adjunct professor at the University of California, Hastings College of Law. 

A recording of this event may be accessed here. Questions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


California's Water Future: Disaster or Deliverance?

Thursday, February 15th Noon-1:00 P.M. King Hall Rm. 1002

How can our state make its water systems more resilient in the age of climate change?  And are our institutions up to the task?  Wade will explore these questions as he outlines current movements, opportunities and hot topics within California water policy.

Wade Crowfoot is CEO of the Water Foundation, a nonprofit philanthropy working to transform water use in the American West. Prior to this role, Wade served California Governor Jerry Brown as deputy cabinet secretary and senior advisor, where he led the administration’s drought response efforts and spearheaded priority initiatives to build California’s climate resilience.  Before joining the Brown Administration, Wade served as west coast regional director for the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF).  He also served as senior environmental advisor to former San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom, where he led many of Mayor Newsom’s environmental initiatives.  Wade holds a Master’s Degree in Public Policy from the London School of Economics and a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science, University of Wisconsin-Madison. 

A recording of this event may be accessed here. Questions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


Environmental Law Career and Externship Opportunities with the California Attorney General's Office

Wednesday, January 17th Noon-1:00 P.M. King Hall Rm. 1002

The California Attorney General’s Office is California’s largest public or private law firm and the single largest employer of King Hall alums.  Join three deputy attorneys general who practice environmental law in that office for a thoughtful discussion of environmental law career and externship opportunities with the Attorney General’s Office.

Kelly Welchans ’07 is a Deputy Attorney General in the Natural Resources Law Section. She is the lead on complex litigation to recover costs incurred by CAL FIRE in fighting and containing the 2015 Butte Fire and defending the Department of Water Resources’ certification of the environmental impact report for Cal WaterFix.

Heather Leslie is a Deputy Attorney General in the Environment Section. Hired through the Attorney General's Honors Program, she primarily represents DTSC, the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment on Prop 65, and the Attorney General himself in environmental litigation on behalf of the People of the State of California.

Amanda Johnson is a Deputy Attorney General in the Land Law Section.  She advises and represents state agencies that regulate development including the Department of Housing and Community Development, the Department of Parks and Recreation, and the Attorney General in his independent capacity to protect public trust interests.

A recording of this event may be accessed here. Questions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


"Happening: A Clean Energy Revolution" Film Screening and Panel Discussion

Wednesday, November 15th King Hall Rm. 1001

On Wednesday, November 15th, the California Environmental Law & Policy Center will host Energy Law Professor John McKinsey and Dr. Austin Brown, Director of the UC Davis Policy Institute for Energy, Environment, and the Economy for a discussion on the era of clean energy, it's benefits and impediments.

This talk will be immediately followed by a screening of the yet-to-be-released HBO documentary Happening: A Clean Energy Revolution. In this feature, filmmaker James Redford embarks on a colorful personal journey into the dawn of the clean energy era as it creates jobs, turns profits, and makes communities stronger and healthier across the US. Unlikely entrepreneurs in communities from Georgetown, TX to Buffalo, NY reveal pioneering clean energy solutions while James' discovery of how clean energy works, and what it means at a personal level, becomes the audiences' discovery too. Reaching well beyond a story of technology and innovation, "Happening" explores issues of human resilience, social justice, embracing the future, and finding hope for survival.

This event is free and open to the public. Community members of all ages and backgrounds are encouraged to attend. Please help us spread the word by inviting your friends and colleagues.

More information on the film may be found on their website here: 


Opportunities for Public Service in Environmental Protection

Wednesday, November 1 Noon-1:00 P.M. King Hall Rm. 1002

Brian R. Leahy was appointed director of the California Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) on Feb. 2, 2012, by Governor Brown.
Prior to joining DPR, Mr. Leahy served as assistant director for the Division of Land Resource Protection in the California Department of Conservation for five years.

Mr. Leahy served as executive director for the California Association of Resource Conservation Districts from 2004 to 2006 and executive director for the California Certified Organic Farmers from 2000 to 2004.

In 1980, he became one of California’s pioneering organic and biodiversity farmers when he took over operations of Cherokee Ranch Inc., a 900-acre rice farm in Butte County that converted to organic farming practices.

A native Californian, Mr. Leahy grew up in Ontario. He earned a Juris Doctorate degree and has worked as a Legal Aid attorney.

A recording of this event may be accessed here. Questions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


An Inconvenient Sequel: Live Chat with Al Gore & Film Screening

Thursday, October 26, 2017

CELPC, in partnership with the UC Davis Environmental Law Society and the UC Davis School of Law, is hosting a live video Q&A with Al Gore following a showing of his second film "An Inconvenient Sequel." In the film, former Vice President Al Gore continues his tireless fight, traveling around the world to train an army of activists and influence international climate policy. Cameras follow him behind the scenes -- in moments both private and public, funny and poignant -- as he pursues the inspirational idea that while the stakes have never been higher, the perils of climate change can be overcome with human ingenuity and passion. Undergraduate and graduate students, guests, and community members are all welcome.

A recording of the Q&A with the former Vice President may be accessed here: password: #BeInconvenient

UC Davis students, faculty, and staff with a Kerberos password may watch the film here: In the left column, choose "An Inconvenient Sequel" then click the "Stream Now" button. 


50 Shades of Blue

Wednesday, October 18 Noon-1:00 P.M. King Hall Rm. 1002

As executive director, Darcie Goodman Collins is responsible for mobilizing the League to achieve the most effective protection of Lake Tahoe. She oversees all aspects of the organization’s management, leadership, and strategy. Dr. Goodman Collins serves as an ambassador to advocate for the Lake with state and federal leaders, and ensures the League’s advocacy is grounded in the best available science.

Dr. Goodman Collins earned her doctorate at the Donald Bren School of Environmental Science and Management at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Her dissertation addressed the chemical, biological and ecological character of water bodies to determine how environmental science can integrate with community engagement to inform public policy. Prior to joining the League, she had served as Habitat Restoration Director for Save the Bay and had provided research support for the University of California, Davis and the University of California, Santa Barbara, monitoring lake and stream chemistry and ecology.

Born and raised in South Lake Tahoe, Dr. Goodman Collins’s first became involved with the League as a summer intern in 1996. In 1997, she was the Tahoe community’s youth representative at the first Tahoe Presidential Summit. Darcie serves on the Lake Tahoe Federal Advisory Committee, is past board president of the Tahoe-Baikal Institute, and is a former board member of the League.

A recording of this event may be accessed hereQuestions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


Environmental Law Reception

Thursday, October 12, 5:30-7:30pm, Stoel Rives LLP

King Hall alumni and other practitioners interested in the many facets of environmental law are welcome to mix and mingle over refreshments while fielding questions from current students considering practice in environmental law. 

Please RSVP here and feel free to invite your environmental law colleagues. 


California Energy Policy in the Age of Trump

Wednesday, October 4 Noon-1:00 P.M. King Hall Rm. 1002

Clifford Rechtschaffen served as a senior advisor for Governor Jerry Brown from 2011 to 2017, where he worked on climate, energy, and environmental issues. In 2011 he also served as acting director of the California Department of Conservation. Commissioner Rechtschaffen served as a special assistant attorney general in the California Attorney General's Office from 2007 to 2010. From 1993 to 2007, he taught environmental law, directed the environmental law program, and co-founded the Environmental Law and Justice Clinic at Golden Gate University School of Law. In 2005 he was a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Ljubljana in Slovenia. From 1999 to 2010 he was a volunteer mediator with the U.S. District Court, Northern District of California. He is the author of several books and numerous articles on environmental law and policy. He was a deputy attorney general in the Environment Section of the California Attorney General's Office from 1986 to 1993, a Reginald Heber Smith Community Lawyer Fellow at the Marin County Legal Aid Foundation from 1985 to 1986, and a law clerk for the Honorable Thelton Henderson, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, from 1984 to 1985. He is a graduate of Yale Law School and Princeton University.

A recording of this event may be accessed hereQuestions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


Who Speaks for the People?: Democratizing the Sustainable Groundwater

Wednesday, September 13 Noon-1:00 P.M. King Hall Room 1002

For the first time in its history, California has attempted to regulate groundwater by requiring local governments to form management agencies for those underground basins. But in the State's agricultural regions, many of those management agencies lack representation from an important and often marginalized constituency—low-income, rural residential communities. What levers exist, and what tools should State agencies use, to determine whether groundwater sustainability agencies properly account for all stakeholders?

Camille Pannu directs King Hall's Water Justice Clinic, a project of the Aoki Center for Critical Race and Nation Studies. The Water Justice Clinic seeks to ensure that all Californians have access to safe, clean and affordable drinking water by advocating for policies that support rural water systems' viability and include the voices of rural, low income communities in water management decisions.

Prior to joining King Hall, Pannu served as an Equal Justice Works Fellow in the southern San Joaquin Valley, where she partnered with low-income communities to address racial and environmental inequality by improving water and energy infrastructure; cultivating green spaces; and creating community- and worker-owned enterprises in the "green" economy. She clerked for the Honorable Richard A. Paez of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and for the Honorable Stefan R. Underhill of the District of Connecticut. Pannu earned her B.A. and J.D. from UC Berkeley.

A recording of this event may be accessed hereQuestions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


Desalination: A Key Part of California's Water Future?

Thursday, April 13 Noon-1:00 P.M. King Hall Room 1301

Peter MacLaggan is Vice President of Poseidon Water. In this capacity, he is responsible for development of the Carlsbad desalination project. He has over 30 years of public agency and private sector experience in water resources planning & management. Mr. MacLaggan holds a B.S. in Civil Engineering from San Diego State University and a Juris Doctorate from the University of San Diego School of Law. He is a registered civil engineer and a member of the California State Bar.

A recording of this event may be accessed hereQuestions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


California Water Policy: The Local Water District Perspective

Tuesday, April 4 Noon-1:00 P.M. King Hall Room 1002

Tim Quinn has more than 30 years of experience in California water issues, and has shaped some of the most significant developments in state water policy. His involvement in developing ACWA’s Statewide Water Action Plan and the Brown Administration’s California Water Action Plan has helped advance comprehensive solutions to meet the state’s 21st century water needs. Over the course of his career, Quinn has been a leader in numerous, transformative California water management events, including the passage of the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act in 2014 and enactment of Proposition 1, the $7.5 billion general obligation water bond approved in 2014.

Prior to joining ACWA as executive director in 2007, Quinn served as deputy general manager of the Metropolitan Water District in Southern California. He joined MWD in 1985 as principal economist, and became deputy general manager in 1994. Prior to his 22-year tenure at MWD, Quinn was a project manager at the RAND Corporation, specializing in research on natural resources & environmental policy issues. He earned a Master’s degree (1976) and PhD (1983) from UCLA.

A recording of this event may be accessed here. Questions about viewing may be directed to Mark Hoffman at mhoffman at


The Other 1%: As The Source of 1% of Global Green House Gas Emissions, Should We Care What California Does?

Tuesday, March 28 Noon-1:00 P.M. King Hall Room 1002

While California is a leader in responding to climate change, does it matter? California has ambitious GHG reduction requirements how they impact climate action around the world. California is a leader of the Under2Coalition, a group of over 165 jurisdictions around the world representing over 1/3 of the world economy that seeks faster and further action to reduce emissions and build climate resilience internationally. How will the new presidential administration impact California’s leadership on emissions?

Ken Alex is the Director of the Governor’s Office of Planning & Research, and serves as Senior Policy Advisor to Governor Jerry Brown and the Chair of the Strategic Growth Council. As the longest tenured OPR Director, Ken Has led a broad effort to modernize land use planning throughout the state. Before joining the Governor’s Office, Ken was the Assistant Attorney General heading the environment section of the California Attorney General’s Office, and the co-head of the Office’s global warming unit. From 2000 to 2006, Ken led the energy task forced investigating price and supply issues related to California’s energy crisis. California lawyer named Ken an “Attorney of the Year” in 2004 for his work in energy law, and he received the ABA award for Distinguished Achievement in Environmental Law & Policy in 2007 for global warming work. Ken is a graduate of Harvard Law School and holds a B.A. in political theory from UC Santa Cruz.

A recording of this event may be accessed hereQuestions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


Moving Water in a Highly Altered Landscape

Tuesday, March 7 Noon-1:00 P.M. King Hall Room 1002

California’s water system has evolved from a natural system of unbridled abundance to a highly altered and unnatural system of extensive infrastructure in which the goal is to provide sufficient water of sufficient quality to areas where humans need it the most. Not surprisingly, a consequence is that California’s once thriving fish and wildlife populations have declined precipitously. This presentation will provide a brief overview of our system and the effect of that system on environmental resources, but focus mainly on the use of water transfers with an examination of the impacts of large water transfers affecting the Sacramento Valley and the Salton Sea.

Kim oversees the work of Defenders’ 6-person California program team in protecting and restoring California’s imperiled wildlife and the places in which they live. Since joining Defenders in 2000, Kim co-authored the revision of the California Natural Community Conservation Planning Act and helped create the Salton Sea Coalition and the Defenders’ California Desert program.

She was also one of the key leaders in establishing the California Rangeland Conservation Coalition. Core California program issues include restoration of the Salton Sea; promoting wildlife conservation on agricultural and ranch lands; protecting California’s desert; promoting regional conservation planning; and protecting California’s coastal waters. Kim was a co-author of the 2008 report, ‘Economic Oasis: Revealing the True Value of the Mojave Desert’. Before joining Defenders of Wildlife, Kim worked for the U.S. Public Interest Research Group as a staff attorney and for CALPIRG as Legislative Director. She began her career as an associate attorney in Washington, D.C. with the public interest law firm of Meyer & Glitzenstein. Kim Delfino holds a B.A. in Political Science, Public Service (Environmental Policy Emphasis) from the University of California-Davis and a J.D., cum laude, from McGeorge School of Law at the University of the Pacific.

A recording of this event may be accessed here.  Questions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


The California State Lands Commission: 78 Years of Public Land Management & Protection

Tuesday, Feb. 14 Noon-1:00 P.M. King Hall Room 1002

The State Lands Commission manages state property interests in over 5 million acres of land, including mineral interests, from the California coastline lout to the 3-mile boundary and from the Colorado River to Lake Tahoe to the Eel River. The Commission also has responsibility for preventing oil spills at marine terminals & offshore oil platforms and for preventing the introduction of marine invasive species into California’s waters. This discussion will focus on the role the Commission plays in addressing the states most pressing challenges, including climate change, sea level rise, and increasing the state’s renewable energy portfolio.

Jennifer Lucchesi was appointed by the Commission as its Executive Officer in 2012. Jennifer began her career at the Commission in 1999, working on projects in virtually every county in the state, with an emphasis on the Public Trust Doctrine, land use, public access, waterfront redevelopment, and title & boundary resolutions involving the state’s tidelands, ports, harbors, and waterways. Prior to her appointment, Jennifer served as the Commission’s Chief Counsel. Jennifer holds a Bachelor’s degree in Agribusiness from Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, and a Juris Doctor from McGeorge School of Law.

A recording of this event may be accessed hereQuestions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


The Democratizing Effect of 'Citizen' Environmental Litigation

Tuesday, November 1, Noon-1:00pm, King Hall Room 1002

Michael Wall is Litigation Director of the Natural Resources Defense Council, a non-profit that uses science, public education, and litigation to advance environmental and health goals. Prior to joining NRDC in 2002, Michael practiced as a trial attorney in the U.S. Department of Justice, Environmental Division, and at a private law firm in San Francisco. Michael litigates major cases to protect human health, restore ecosystems, and fight environmental injustices. He graduated from Harvard Law School and Harvard College; clerked for the Honorable Edward E. Carnes, on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit; and serves as a Regent of the American College of Environmental Law.

A recording of this event may be accessed hereQuestions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


State Agency Attorneys Play A Meaningful Role In Advancing California's Groundbreaking Environmental And Energy Policies

Tuesday, October 11, Noon-1:00pm, King Hall Room 1002

State Agency attorneys are often unseen and unsung forces in California's groundbreaking efforts to address environmental and energy challenges.  This presentation highlights some of the multi-faceted work of California Energy Commission attorneys and those from other state agencies in advancing important environmental and energy policies. 

Kourtney Vaccaro is the Chief Counsel of the California Energy Commission, where she oversees the work of about 30 attorneys who advise Commissioners and staff in the myriad programs under the Energy Commission's jurisdiction--from power plant licensing and energy forecasting to contract administration for energy efficiency and alternative and renewable energy programs.

Ms. Vaccaro previously served the Energy Commission as a Hearing Adviser and Assistant Executive Director of Compliance Assistance and Enforcement.  Before joining the Commission, Ms. Vaccaro served as chief of the Enforcement Division of the Fair Political Practices Commission and was an attorney with numerous law firms.  Ms. Vaccaro earned a J.D./M.P.A. (1994) from USC.


Planning Retrospective in SACOG Region and California: In the last decade, have we made significant improvements or just the status quo?

Tuesday, September 13, Noon-1:00pm, King Hall Room 1002

Mike McKeever, has been Chief Executive Officer of the Sacramento Area Council of Governments Board of Directors since 2004. Previously, Mr. McKeever, was project manager of the Blueprint Project at SACOG.

Mike McKeever has focused his career on effective regional planning. Prior to moving to Sacramento he was the owner of an urban planning consulting practice in Portland, Oregon which was active in the development of Portland Metro’s Home Rule Charters and 2040 growth plan. During Mr. McKeever's tenure at SACOG the organization has established itself as a national leader in sustainable, integrated regional planning. He was a key contributor to California Senate Bill 375, the nation's most comprehensive regional planning law linking climate change, transportation, land use and housing planning and was appointed by the California Air Resources Board to chair the Regional Targets Advisory Committee, a 19 person statewide committee to assist in the implementation of SB375.

A recording of this event may be accessed hereQuestions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


A California Legislator's Environmental Legacy: Past Victories and Future Challenges

Tuesday, September 6, Noon-1:00pm, King Hall Room 1002

Senator Lois Wolk represents the Third Senate District and serves as Senate Majority Whip. Wolk is a recognized leader in numerous policy areas, including water management, the crisis in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, flood management and renewable energy. Currently, she chairs the Senate Budget Subcommittee on Resources, Environmental Protection, Energy and Transportation, as well as the Senate Select Committee on the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta. During her over 13 years in the State Legislature, Wolk has authored 115 laws. She was one of two lead authors of Proposition 1 (the 2014 water bond). She also authored two measures in a 2007 package of flood protection legislation, and legislation to increase consumer access to renewable energy. During her 6 years in the State Assembly, she served four years as the first woman chair of the Assembly Water, Parks and Wildlife Committee.

A recording of this event may be accessed hereQuestions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


Centers' Fall Mixer

Tuesday, August 23, 4:00-6:00pm, King Hall Courtyard

Please join School of Law's Academic Centers (Aoki Center for Critical Race & Nation Studies, the California Environmental Law & Policy Center, and the California International Law Center) at their Fall Mixer.

You'll have the opportunity to meet Center directors, learn about programing for the upcoming academic year, interact with the legal community at King Hall - including our two new faculty members Irene O. Joe and Aaron Tang, two new center fellows Nida Siddiqui (CILC) and Dan Quinley (CELPC), J.D. and LL.M. students, visiting scholars, and international exchange students - and enjoy food and refreshments.


Identifying & Addressing California's Daunting 21st Century Water Challenges

Wednesday, April 6, Noon-1:00pm, King Hall Room 1002

Ellen Hanak is director of the PPIC Water Policy Center and a senior fellow at the Public Policy Institute of California. Under her leadership, the center has become a critical source of information and guidance for natural resource management in California. She has authored dozens of reports, articles, and books on water policy, including Managing California’s Water. Her research is frequently profiled in the national media, and she participates in briefings, conferences, and interviews throughout the nation and around the world. Her other areas of expertise include climate change and infrastructure finance. Previously, she served as research director at PPIC. Before joining PPIC, she held positions with the French agricultural research system, the President’s Council of Economic Advisers, and the World Bank. She holds a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Maryland.

A recording of this event may be viewed hereQuestions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


Emergence of Private Environmental Regulation

Thursday, March 17, Noon-1:00pm, King Hall Rm. 1002

LeRoy C. (Lee) Paddock is Associate Dean for Environmental Law Studies at The George Washington University Law School where he directs one of the largest environment and energy law programs in the United States (more than 20 environmental law courses, nine energy law courses, and an LL.M. program with four specialty tracks).  His research focuses on environmental compliance and enforcement, environmental governance with particular emphasis on integrating the regulatory system with economic and values-based drivers of environmental behavior, environmental justice, public participation, energy issues including alternative energy sources and energy efficiency, and on environmental management in the context of emerging technologies.  He has served on the Council of the American Bar Association Section of Environment, Energy and Resources and the ABA Presidential Task Force on Sustainable Development.  He also serves on The George Washington University Sustainability Implementation Team and is Sustainability Faculty Coordinator for the University. 

Prior to coming to George Washington University, Lee was Director of Environmental Law Programs at Pace University School of Law for five years.  Before Pace, he was an Assistant Attorney General for 20 years with the Minnesota Attorney General’s Office, including 13 years as Director of Environmental Policy for Minnesota Attorney General Hubert H. Humphrey III.  Lee holds a B.A. from the University of Michigan and a J.D. with High Honors from the University of Iowa.  He clerked for Judge Donald Lay of the U.S. Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals.

This event is a joint presentation with CELPC and the Environmental Law Society.

A recording of this event may be viewed hereQuestions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


The Stewardship of California's Natural Resources in a Changing Climate

Thursday, March 10, Noon-1:00pm, King Hall Room 1002

John Laird was appointed California Secretary for Natural Resources by Governor Jerry Brown on January 5, 2011. Prior to his appointment, Mr. Laird served as city council member and mayor of Santa Cruz, California State Assembly Member, member of the State Integrated Waste Management Board, and has taught at UC Santa Cruz.

In his role as California’s Secretary of Natural Resources, Mr. Laird has made climate change adaptation, water conservation and supply reliability, enhanced relationships with tribal governments, State Parks access, farmland conservation, and oceans sustainability, among other issues, top priorities. As Secretary, he provides administrative oversight to thirty departments, commissions, councils, museum, boards and conservancies, and is a sitting member of sixteen conservancies, councils, boards and commissions within the purview of the Agency.

A recording of this event may be viewed hereQuestions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


Dirt, Water & Sunshine: California and Its Farmers and Ranchers in the 21st Century

Tuesday, February 16, Noon-1:00pm, King Hall Room 1002

In the 21st century, California continues its trajectory of urbanization and environmental protection against the backdrop of an agricultural landscape and economy. Can we have it all? This talk discusses key policy questions in relation to water policy, land use, and environmental justice, as well as the implications of climate change. Chris Scheuring is Managing Counsel at the California Farm Bureau Federation in Sacramento, representing California farmers and ranchers in the environmental law and policy arenas of water resources and land use. Prior to the Farm Bureau, Mr. Scheuring was an environmental lawyer in private practice. He is also a family farmer, growing walnuts, almonds and other food products, and serves on the board of the Yolo Land Trust. He is a 2000 graduate of King Hall.

A recording of this event may be viewed hereQuestions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


California's Water Crisis: Will El Niño Save Us?

Thursday, January 21, Noon-1:00pm, King Hall Room 1002

Assembly member Marc Levine was elected in November 2012 to represent the 10th Assembly District, comprised of Marin County and Southern Sonoma County. He currently chairs the Assembly Committee on Water, Parks, and Wildlife. This committee is responsible for overseeing Water Bond expenditures, implementation of a long-term plan to protect our beautiful parks, and protecting endangered species, migratory birds, and other wildlife. Mr. Levine’s priorities include funding higher education & K-12, California’s precious water supply, improving our transportation infrastructure, and continuing to pay down California’s debt and controlling spending. He holds a Master’s Degree in National Security Affairs from the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, CA.

A recording of this event may be viewed hereQuestions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


Using Philanthropy to Advance Conservation

Monday, November 16, Noon-1:00pm, King Hall Room 1002

Mary Scoonover provides executive leadership to Resources Legacy Fund. Since its founding in 2000, Resources Legacy Fund has represented an innovation in conservation philanthropy as a donor-driven enterprise. RLF programs have achieved significant, enduring results, including acquiring 800,000 acres of key habitat in California; achieving protection of more than one  million acres of wilderness; establishing a science-based, statewide network of Marine Protected Areas from Mexico to the Oregon border; and protecting key wildlife linkages in the northern Rockies and signature coastal landscapes in Northwest Mexico. She engages partners and philanthropy to design conservation programs that address complex natural resource management issues, including land and water conservation, parks protection and enhancement, climate adaptation, ecosystem diversity, federal and state law, policy, funding, and strategic coalition development. Before joining RLF, Mary was a deputy attorney general in the California Department of Justice, where she represented the state in litigation concerning Mono Lake, California’s Coast, the San Francisco Bay Delta, and Lake Tahoe. She is a graduate of the UC Davis School of Law.

A recording of this event may be viewed hereQuestions about viewing may be directed to Law IT Help at lawIThelp at


Reducing GHG Emissions or Building Renewables?

Monday, October 26, Noon-1:00pm, King Hall Room 1002

We're reaching the point where succeeding at GHG reduction can result in more renwables power generation; but more renewables don't have the corresponding results in overall GHG reduction.

Michael Picker was named President of the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) on December 23, 2014, by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr., who first appointed President Picker as a Commissioner on January 29, 2014. Prior to his appointment, President Picker was Senior Advisor for Renewable Energy in the Office of the Governor from 2009 to 2014. He was a principal at Lincoln Crow Strategic Communications from 2000 to 2009, Deputy Treasurer in the Office of the California State Treasurer from 1998 to 1999, Chief of Staff to Sacramento Mayor Joe Serna Jr. from 1992 to 1999, and Deputy Assistant for toxic substance control in the Office of the Governor from 1981 to 1982. He was a member of the Sacramento Municipal Utility District Board of Directors from 2012-2014.  President Picker is a former lecturer at UCLA’s Graduate School of Architecture and Urban Planning, and instructor at Occidental College’s Urban and Environmental Policies Institute. He holds an MBA from UC Davis, specializing in marketing, social marketing, and nonprofit management.

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


Sharks, Elephants and Chickens: Moving the Needle for Animal Protection in California

Monday, September 28th, Noon-1:00pm, King Hall Room 1002

Prior to starting Fearless Advocacy, Inc. in November 2014, Jennifer Fearing led policy efforts in California for The Humane Society of the United States, the nation’s largest animal protection organization. She ran the successful Proposition 2 ballot campaign in 2008 and has been in Sacramento since that time lobbying the California legislature, Governor’s Office, and other state agencies. She has helped pursue more than 50 positive legislative and regulatory outcomes in Sacramento since 2008 including high profile legislative battles. She led efforts to develop a new legislative caucus, voter scorecard, myriad lobby days and other successful events and initiatives. Jennifer has authored opinion editorials that have appeared in the Sacramento Bee, San Francisco Chronicle, Los Angeles Times and other newspapers and is frequently interviewed by local, state and national media. Jennifer earned her undergraduate degree in Political Science and Economics from UC Davis and her masters degree from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government in Public Policy. She is a regular guest lecturer at McGeorge, Boalt and Hastings law schools, Cal Lutheran and NYU.

Current Fearless Advocacy clients include The Humane Society of the United States, the Center for Food Safety, the California Association of Nonprofits, Defenders of Wildlife and the San Francisco SPCA.

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


Diversity in Environmental Law Panel

Wednesday, September 16th Room 1002 Noon to 1pm

Minority attorneys have traditionally been underrepresented in the field of environmental law.  What can and should be done to make environmental law and lawyering more diverse?

Our panelists will include Stacey Geis, Managing Attorney, Earthjustice; Arsenio Mataka, Assistant Secretary for Environmental Justice and Tribal Affairs at CalEPA; Leticia Moore, Senior Counsel and Acting Section Chief with the United States Environmental Protection Agency and  Tim Taylor, Partner, Stoel Rives LLP.

Co Sponsored by California State Bar Environmental Law Section

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


Regulatory Approaches For Combating Climate Change: Lessons From California

Monday, April 6th, Noon-1:00pm, King Hall Rm. 1303

Clifford Rechtschaffen is a senior advisor in the governor’s office, working on energy, environmental and agricultural issues. From 2007 to 2010 he was a special assistant attorney general for Attorney General Jerry Brown. He currently is on leave from Golden Gate University School of Law, where he taught environmental law and directed the environmental law program from 1993 to 2007. He is the author of several books and numerous articles about environmental law. Prior to becoming a professor at Golden Gate, he worked in the Environment Section of the California Attorney General’s Office from 1986 to 1993. He is a graduate of Princeton University and Yale Law School. 


California Water 2015: Where We Are and Where We Need To Go

Thursday, April 2nd, Noon-1:00pm, King Hall Rm. 1002

Before her appointment to the Water Board, Felicia Marcus served as the Western Director for the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). Prior to her work at the NRDC, she was the Executive VP/COO of the Trust for Public Land, and Regional Administrator of the U.S. EPA Region IX. While at the EPA, Felicia worked extensively on a range of environmental issues and most heavily in air quality, Bay-Delta water, tribal, and US-Mexico border issues. Ms. Marcus currently serves on the Public Policy Institute of California, Urban Habitat, Kesten Institute for Public Finance and Infrastructure Policy, and the Center for Diversity and the Environment. She is also an Obama Administration appointee to the Commission on Environmental Cooperation-Joint Public Advisory Council (US, Mexico, Canada).

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


The Future of Sustainable Water Management

Tuesday, March 3rd, Noon-1:00pm, King Hall Rm. 1002

Lester Snow is the Executive Director of the California Water Foundation. Mr. Snow has a distinguished record of innovation, collaboration and results while working on complex natural resource management matters. Most recently, he served as Secretary of the California Natural Resources Agency, where he oversaw 25 departments, commissions, boards, and conservancies, and served as chief advisor on issues related to the state’s natural, historic, and cultural resources. His responsibilities included chairmanship of the Ocean Protection Council. Previously, Mr. Snow was Director of the California Department of Water Resources, with responsibility to protect, conserve, and manage California’s water resources, including operation of the California State Water Project, the largest state-run, multi-purpose water and power system in the United States. Mr. Snow has also served as Executive Director of CALFED, regional director for the Bureau of Reclamation, General Manager of the San Diego County Water Authority, and spent six years with the Arizona Department of Water Resources, including four years as Tucson area director implementing Arizona’s first comprehensive groundwater management efforts. Mr. Snow holds a Master’s degree in Water Resources Administration from the University of Arizona and a Bachelor’s degree in Earth Sciences from Pennsylvania State University. 

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


Spreck Rosekrans, Executive Director of Restore Hetch Hetchy: Restoring Hetch Hetchy - and John Muir's Legacy

Tuesday, February 17th, Noon-1:00pm, King Hall Rm. 1002

Spreck Rosekrans has more than 25 years’ experience working on water and power issues in his native California and other Western states. Before joining Restore Hetch Hetchy in 2012, Spreck spent worked for the Environmental Defense Fund and with conservationists, Indian tribes, government agencies and water districts to protect the Colorado River in the Grand Canyon, restore California’s Trinity River and to manage and restore wetlands, streams and the Bay Delta in California’s Central Valley. At EDF, he was lead author of “Paradise Regained: Solutions for Restoring Yosemite’s Hetch Hetchy Valley”. Spreck is recognized as an expert in water system operations and planning by the California legislature, the state water board, and the federal courts. 

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


Access to Safe Drinking Water in the Age of Agribusiness

Wednesday, November 5th 12:00 pm Room 1002

Pearl Kan ’13  is an attorney and Equal Justice Works Fellow at California Rural Legal Assistance Inc., in the Salinas field office.  There, she is helping to spearhead a legal initiative surrounding widespread nitrate contamination of groundwater wells. 

She is a 2013 King Hall graduate.  At King Hall she focused on environmental and environmental justice issues, earning a certificate in public interest service.  During her law school summers she worked at the Sierra Club’s Environmental Law Program’s Beyond Coal campaign as well as for the Environmental Defense Fund.

 Pearl is working with Professor Angela Harris on a water access research project with King Hall students this fall.  She hopes to engage more law students with water justice and sustainable agricultural issues as challenges in both water quality and water quantity become more complex in the age of climate change.

 Pearl graduated with honors from the University of Chicago and served as a Fulbright Fellow before entering law school. 


The Fracking Wars: Environmental Law, The Climate Crisis, and the New Fossil Fuel Boom

Tuesday, October 14th 12:00 pm Room 1002

Kassie Siegel, Senior Counsel, Climate Law Institute Director, Center for Biological Diversity, develops and implements campaigns for the reduction of greenhouse gas pollution and the protection of plants and animals threatened by global warming, including the Center’s petition to protect the polar bear under the Endangered Species Act. Prior to attending Berkeley’s Boalt Hall School of Law and working for the Center, she was a natural-history guide leading wilderness trips in Alaska.


Climate Risk and Opportunity

Monday, September 29th 12:00pm Room 1002

Kate Gordon is a nationally recognized expert on the intersection of clean energy and economic development, most recently as Vice President for Energy and Environment at the Center for American Progress (CAP) in Washington D.C., where she still serves as a senior fellow. She has worked on a variety of economic development and social justice issues for more than 15 years and is regarded as a leader in the national “green jobs” movement. She contributes regularly to the Wall Street Journal as one of the paper's "Energy Experts," blogs for the Huffington Post, and writes a weekly update on California energy and climate news for Next Generation. She was recently named one of the Top 50 “Influencers to watch ahead of the 2014 election cycle” by Campaigns and Elections Magazine.

At CAP, Kate led an energy team focused on developing policies and communications strategies to move the U.S. to a clean energy economy.  She has focused on issues related to clean energy manufacturing, regional economic development in clean energy sectors, and American competitiveness.

Prior to joining CAP, she was the co-director of the national Apollo Alliance (now part of the Blue Green Alliance), where she still serves on the Board of Directors.  Earlier in her career, she was a senior associate at the Center on Wisconsin Strategy and an employment and consumer rights litigator at Trial Lawyers for Public Justice in Oakland. She earned a J.D. and master's degree in city planning from the University of California-Berkeley and an undergraduate degree from Wesleyan University.

Kate leads the Energy & Climate team at the Next Generation, developing policies and communications strategies to combat climate change and move the U.S. to a clean energy economy.


Environmental Litigation in the US Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of California - Sylvia Quast: Executive Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of California

Wednesday, April 02, 2014 from Noon-1pm in King Hall Room 1002

Sylvia Quast is the Executive Assistant United States Attorney in the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of California. In that capacity, she shares management responsibility with the U.S. Attorney and the First Assistant U.S. Attorney for a 175-member Office. She also oversees environmental enforcement actions in California’s largest federal judicial district and serves as the District’s Tribal Liaison. Prior to becoming the Executive AUSA, she oversaw virtually all litigation against the federal government in the District, including environmental litigation. She will talk about the institutional role of the US Attorney, with a particular focus on the Eastern District of California and its role in environmental litigation, particularly the challenges and opportunities in overseeing and protecting the abundant natural resources found in the Eastern District.

From 2005-2008, Ms. Quast was an attorney at the Resources Law Group in Sacramento, where she provided strategic conservation advice to philanthropic organizations and individuals, as well as local governments. While at RLG, she served as finance coordinator for the Proposition 84 campaign, which secured $5.4 billion in bond funding for clean water and conservation in California, and helped to develop a long-term restoration plan for the San Francisco Bay Salt Pond project, the largest wetland restoration project in the western United States. Prior to 2005, Ms. Quast was a senior attorney with the United States Department of Justice’s Environment and Natural Resources Division in Washington, D.C., where she litigated numerous environmental cases in the United States Supreme Court and the federal courts of appeal, particularly the Ninth Circuit. She also prepared Department officials for Congressional hearings, press conferences, and other public presentations and appearances. Among her other responsibilities, she served as the Department’s representative on the United States Coral Reef Task Force.

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


Reducing California’s GHG Emissions with Renewable Energy and AB 32 - Carla Peterman: Commissioner, California Public Utilities Commission

Tuesday, March 18, 2014 from Noon-1pm in King Hall Room 1303

Commissioner Peterman will discuss her role as Commissioner of the Public Utilities Commission (PUC), with a particular emphasis on renewable energy and the PUC’s work in helping to implement the GHG reduction goals of AB 32.

Commissioner Peterman is the assigned commissioner at the PUC for alternative transportation, electric storage issues (AB 2514, Skinner, 2010), several proceedings related to the promotion of biogas, including for pipeline injection (AB 1900, Gatto, 2012) and an application from Southern California Gas to provide biogas conditioning services, the California Teleconnect Fund, the California American Water general rate case, a proceeding related to transit worker safety, and the 2007 Malibu Fire investigation, along with numerous other smaller cases. Commissioner Peterman was the lead Commissioner at the California Energy Commission for renewables, transportation, natural gas, and the 2012 Integrated Energy Policy Report. In this role, Commissioner Peterman provided lead policy guidance for the implementation of the 33% RPS (SBX1 2), The New Solar Homes Partnership, the Emerging Renewables Program, the Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program, and selected power plant siting proceedings. Ms. Peterman is the first African-American female to be appointed to both commissions.

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


Fracking in California: Implementing SB 4 - Mark Nechodom: Director, California Department of Conservation

Thursday, February 20, 2014 from Noon-1pm in King Hall Room 1002

Mark Nechodom is the Director of California’s Department of Conservation (DOC). He will discuss the role of the DOC in California environmental law and policy and will focus in particular on how the Department is working to implement SB 4, California’s first legislation regulating hydraulic fracturing and acid well stimulation treatments.

Mark has dedicated his professional life to integrating conservation, regulation and development right where it matters the most: on the land, on the farm, and in the forest. His mission has been to inspire sustainable production and practices while maintaining a sensible balance between economic opportunities, environmental health and human well-being.

Prior to his recent appointment as DOC Director, Mark was a Senior Policy Advisor to the Secretary of the US Department of Agriculture (USDA). He also served as Director of the Office of Environmental Markets at USDA, and as the Senior Climate Science Policy Advisor to the Chief of the US Forest Service. Mark was the USDA representative on the team that negotiated the greenhouse gas reporting protocol for forestry for California’s Climate Action Reserve, and provided scientific and technical support to the California Air Resources Board and the Board of Forestry in the development of the state climate strategy under AB 32 (the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006).

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


California's Green Chemistry Initiative - Debbie Raphael, Director, California Department of Toxic Substances Control

Wednesday, January 22, 2014 from Noon-1pm in King Hall Room 1002

Director Raphael will address the many challenges currently facing DTSC, emphasizing California’s Green Chemistry Initiative. She joined the Department of Toxic Substances Control as Director in May 2011. A scientist and a former program manager for the San Francisco Department of the Environment, she is a public policy innovator who is defining new and innovative approaches to public health and environmental policy-making. Her 20 years of public service demonstrate a dedication to the principles of scientific inquiry, engagement and transparency, and forging partnerships that pave the way for meaningful and practical change.

In her time with DTSC, Raphael has reached out to stakeholders across California seeking their input on how the Department can do its job better. Recognizing that environmental protection and economic growth go hand in hand, she brings this intuitive approach to the development of DTSC’s proposed Safer Consumer Products Regulations and the Green Chemistry Initiative.

She graduated with honors in biology from the University of California, Berkeley, was a Smithsonian and National Science Foundation fellow, and has a Master’s degree in Physiological Plant Ecology from UCLA.

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


Legislating Environmental Law in California: A Behind-the-Scenes View - Kip Lipper, Chief Policy Advisor, Energy, Natural Resources, and Environment, Office of the California Senate Pro Tempore Darrell Steinberg

Nov. 19, 2013 - 12:00 PM - King Hall Room 2304

Kip Lipper is an advisor on energy, environmental, and natural resources matters to the California State Senate President Pro Tempore Darrell Steinberg.  He has worked in the California Legislature for over 34 years, during which time he was chief of staff for Senator Byron Sher (D-Stanford), staff director to the Senate Committee on Environmental Quality, and chief consultant to the Assembly Natural Resources Committee. 

During his career he has worked on legislation covering a broad array of environmental issues including the California Clean Air Act, the California Safe Drinking Water Act, the California Beverage Container Recycling Act, and the Integrated Waste Management Act, and has drafted and analyzed legislation on energy regulation, renewable energy, energy conservation, greenhouse gas emissions, energy agency reform, and other issues.  Lipper has also worked on state budget issues affecting energy, environmental, and resources agencies of state government.  He has published papers on a range of environmental issues, and has been a guest lecturer on environmental and energy legislation at the Stanford Law School, Berkeley Law, UC Davis School of Law, Loyola Law School, and at UC Berkeley, UC Davis, and CSU Sacramento.

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


Water Supply Sustainability for Growth and Climate Change - Jeffrey Kightlinger, General Manager, The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California

Oct. 10, 2013 - 12:00 PM - King Hall Room 1002

Jeffrey Kightlinger is general manager for The Metropolitan Water District of Southern California.  As general manager, he is responsible for implementing the policy directives of the Board, including working with elected officials and member agencies to carry out the Metropolitan's mission.  The General Manager reports directly to the Board of Directors and provides leadership and management of the water district's public policies and strategic initiatives, assets and resources, and all administrative, operational, and financial activities for Metropolitan.

Kightlinger was appointed general manager in February 2006.  Prior to his appointment as general manager, he was general counsel for Metropolitan. He was responsible for directing Metropolitan's legal staff and consulting attorneys; leading the district's legal strategies in pending and potential litigation; and protecting Metropolitan's interests in all legal matters.

Before becoming general counsel, Kightlinger represented Metropolitan in environmental issues and water right matters.  At Metropolitan he worked primarily on Colorado River matters, water rights issues and a number of the district's water transfer and storage programs.  Before joining Metropolitan in 1995, he worked in private practice representing numerous public agencies including municipalities, redevelopment agencies and special districts.

Kightlinger earned a bachelor's degree in history from the University of California, Berkeley in 1981 and a law degree from the Santa Clara University Law School in 1985.

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


The Endangered Species Act at 40: Examining Its Past and Exploring Its Future

Oct. 4, 2013 - 8:00 AM - 5:30 PM - King Hall


The California Environmental Law & Policy Center is pleased to announce a major Endangered Species Act conference that it and the UC Davis School of Law will host on Friday, October 4, 2013: "The ESA at 40: Examining Its Past and Exploring Its Future."

Please visit the conference page for more information and to register for this event.


Introducing Professor Lesley McAllister - Speaking on Private Environmental Regulation

Sept. 24, 2013 - 12:00 PM - King Hall Room 1002

CELPC presents Professor Lesley McAllister, one of King Hall’s newest faculty members.  Professor McAllister will discuss her background, her areas of teaching and writing, and give a talk on Private Environmental Regulation.

Before joining the UC Davis law faculty in 2013, Professor Lesley McAllister held appointments at the University of San Diego School of Law and the UC San Diego School of International Relations and Pacific Studies.  She teaches and writes in the areas of environmental, natural resources, property, and energy law, both domestic and international.  Much of her scholarship deals with innovative regulatory approaches, such as cap-and-trade regulation, public-private governance, and citizen enforcement.  Professor McAllister is a member scholar of the Center for Progressive Reform and has served as a consultant to the Administrative Conference of the United States.  She has a J.D. from Stanford Law School and a Ph.D. from the Energy and Resources Group at UC Berkeley, where she focused on Brazilian environmental law and legal institutions.  As an undergraduate, she majored in civil engineering and public policy at Princeton University.

A recording of this event may be viewed here.

Meeting the Challenges of Environmental Journalism in the 21st Century

Sept. 10, 2013 - 12:00 PM - King Hall Room 1002

The first event in the CELPC Fall 2013 Speakers' Series features a panel on Environmental Journalism with four esteemed journalists. These panelists have reported on environmental events and issues for local, state, and national news organizations. During this panel they offer their perspectives and insights on reporting in this fascinating area within the overall landscape of journalism and public discourse on the environment.

A recording of this event may be viewed here.

Panel Moderator:


Chris Bowman

Chris Bowman is Communications Director at the UC Davis Center for Watershed Sciences, a multidisciplinary research group engaged in solving California's complex water problems. He joined the Center in 2012 after a stint as speechwriter for California Air Resources Board Chairman Mary Nichols and a distinguished 30-year career in newspapers. Bowman is one of the nation's most experienced environmental journalists, having worked all sides of the beat in his 24 years as a senior writer at The Sacramento Bee. Several of his investigative stories led to state and federal environmental reforms. His honors include the McClatchy President's Award for journalism excellence, the national Roy W. Howard Award for Public Service Reporting and the national Edward Willis Scripps Award for Distinguished Service to the First Amendment.

Bowman is the first U.S. journalist to be appointed Environmental Nieman Fellow, which awarded him a year of study at Harvard University in 1994-95. The fellowship inspired him to mentor journalists abroad, including a three-month stint in Zimbabwe as a 1998 Senator John Heinz Fellow in International Environmental Reporting. More recently, Bowman taught environmental journalism at the University of Nevada, Reno, and served on the board of the Society of Environmental Journalists. Bowman began his reporting career at The Press-Enterprise in Riverside, California, and The Hartford Courant. He holds a master's degree in journalism from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Arts in history from UC Davis.



Amy Quinton

Amy Quinton has more than 13 years experience in public radio. Amy came to Sacramento from New Hampshire Public Radio (NHPR) where she was the Environment Reporter. At NHPR, she spent countless hours in the state legislature reporting on energy and environmental policy. She also became Interim News Director, managing NHPR's daily news coverage from reporters and stringers across the state. Amy has also reported for NPR member stations WFAE in Charlotte, NC, WAMU in Washington D.C. and American Public Media's "Marketplace." She started her career in television news but quickly discovered that public radio allowed her the time to do the in-depth journalism that she loved. During her career, Amy has received numerous awards for her reporting, including the Sigma Delta Chi Award for Public Service in Journalism presented by the Society of Professional Journalists.


Fiona Smith

Fiona Smith is a staff writer at the San Francisco and Los Angeles Daily Journal covering the environment and energy. Before joining the Daily Journal in 2006, Fiona spent a year in Bolivia writing for the Associated Press and prior to that did reporting from Mexico and Argentina. Her first newspaper job was at the Whittier Daily News in Southern California. Her work has appeared in outlets including the Oakland Tribune, KQED’s California Report and Fiona holds a dual Master’s degree in Journalism and Latin American Studies from UC Berkeley and a BA in English, with honors, from UC Berkeley.


Matt Weiser

Matt Weiser has worked at The Sacramento Bee since 2005, where he is a senior writer covering environmental issues. He has written about the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta for more than 15 years, and has won numerous journalism awards for articles about the estuary's water supply, endangered species and flood-control issues. He has a degree in journalism from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo, and was a 1995 Ted Scripps Fellow in Environmental Journalism at The University of Michigan.


California in the 21st Century: Creating a Fish and Wildlife Agency Ready for the Challenge - Chuck Bonham, Director, California Department of Fish & Wildlife

April 16, 2013 - 12:00 PM - King Hall Room 1002

Charlton “Chuck” Bonham is the Director of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (previously the Department of Fish and Game).  The Department maintains native fish, wildlife, plant species and natural communities for their intrinsic and ecological value and their benefits to people.  Prior to his appointment as Director in September 2011, Bonham served in a number of roles for Trout Unlimited (TU) for over ten years, including as the organization’s California director and as a senior attorney.  He was responsible for developing, managing, and implementing TU's programs in California, including the California Water Project, Sportsmen’s Conservation Project, and restoration and watershed projects in both northern and Southern California.

Bonham has also served on the Board of Directors of the Delta Conservancy, whose mission is to conserve, sustain and enhance the cultural, agricultural, recreational, wildlife and natural habitat resources of the River Delta region, as well as develop and promote sustainable protection, management and stewardship programs through research and education.  Bonham received his J.D. and Environmental and Natural Resources Law Certificate from the Northwestern School of Law of Lewis and Clark College, in Portland, Oregon.

This event was presented as part of the Environmental Law Society's 2013 ELS Week.

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


Lines In the Sand: Contrasting Strategies for Environmental Advocacy in the 21st Century - Joel Reynolds, Western Director, Natural Resources Defense Council

March 27, 2013 - 12:00 PM - King Hall Room 1002

Joel Reynolds is NRDC’s Western Director and principal institutional representative in the West.  He joined NRDC as a Senior Attorney in 1990, after ten years with the Center for Law in the Public Interest and the Western Center on Law and Poverty, both in Los Angeles.  Since 1980, he has specialized in complex law reform litigation, arguing cases on behalf of environmental and community organizations at all levels of the federal courts, including the U.S. Supreme Court.  He has led several of NRDC’s largest campaigns, including campaigns to protect the gray whale birthing lagoon and World Heritage Site at Laguna San Ignacio in Baja California, to reduce ocean noise pollution, and, most recently, to stop the Pebble Mine in southwest Alaska.

He has twice been selected California Attorney of the Year in the environmental law category and was recently appointed Chairman of the Board of the Tejon Ranch Conservancy, one of the largest land trusts in California. He is a frequent contributor to the Opinion pages of major media like The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, The Christian Science Monitor, The Huffington Post, and other leading newspapers in California.   From 1986 to 1990, he was an adjunct professor at the University of Southern California Law Center.  He graduated from Columbia Law School in 1978.

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


Greening the Grid Through California’s Electricity Markets - Nancy Saracino, Vice President, General Counsel and Chief Administrative Officer, California Independent System Operator

February 28, 2013 - 12:00 PM - King Hall Room 1002

Nancy Saracino is the Vice President, General Counsel and Chief Administrative Officer at the California Independent System Operator (ISO) Corporation.  She oversees all compliance, governance and control functions for the ISO and serves as the chief legal officer and representative for the corporation in legal and regulatory matters, audit and compliance issues.  Saracino also advises the Board of Governors on the application of federal, state and local law and provides guidance and advice on governance and corporate issues.

Saracino came to the California ISO in 2007 from the California Department of Water Resources, where she was DWR Chief Counsel and later DWR Chief Deputy Director.  Prior to joining DWR, she worked in the California Attorney General's office as a Supervising Deputy Attorney General on the Energy Task Force, representing the state of California, DWR and the governor's office in litigation relating to the 2000-2001 energy crisis.  Saracino was previously a partner at Mennemeier, Glassman & Stroud, representing public and private clients in a range of areas from water law to employment litigation.  She started her legal career as an associate at Kronick, Moskovitz, Tiedemann & Girard.  Saracino earned her law degree from UC Davis School of Law, and has a bachelor of arts degree in economics from UC Davis.

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


Restoring Lake Tahoe: The Regional Plan Update and Beyond - Joanne Marchetta, Executive Director, Tahoe Regional Planning Agency

January 30, 2013 - 12:00 PM - King Hall Room 1002

Joanne Marchetta is the Executive Director of the Tahoe Regional Planning Agency (TRPA), and has held that position since 2009.  Prior to that, she served as TRPA’s General Counsel for four years.  She has a long history of managing complex land use issues including environmental waste clean-up negotiations and comprehensive planning updates.  Marchetta has worked for a variety of organizations such as the U.S. Department of Justice, the Environmental Protection Agency, and the Presidio Trust in San Francisco.  At the Presidio Trust she managed the comprehensive planning update to transition the Presidio from a military base to public parkland by leveraging revenue generated through rehabilitation and redevelopment of its buildings. 

Marchetta holds a bachelor’s degree in forestry from the University of Michigan and a law degree from the Columbus School of Law at Catholic University in Washington, D.C.  She has worked in public service for over 25 years and is the first woman to be appointed as Executive Director of TRPA.

A recording of this event may be viewed here.

King Hall Hosts Planning and Conservation League Annual Environmental Symposium

UC Davis School of Law hosted "CEQA: Yesterday, Today, Tomorrow?", the Planning and Conservation League's 2013 Symposium on the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), at King Hall on January 12.  The event drew about 200 people to the Kalmanovitz Appellate Courtroom and featured remarks from Professor of Environmental Practice Richard Frank '74, Susan Brandt-Hawley '77, Kevin K. Johnson '80, and California Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg '84, who delivered the keynote address.

The Sacramento-based Planning and Conservation League, one of California's most prominent environmental organizations, hosts an annual symposium on environmental topics, and this year focused on CEQA, the 1970 law that serves as the foundation for California's environmental regulation. 

Professor Frank, who is Director of the California Environmental and Policy Center (CELPC) and a former member of the Board of Planning and Conservation League Board of Directors, served as moderator for an opening keynote panel discussion that featured California Senators Michael J. Rubio and Noreen Evans as well as Planning and Conservation League President David Mogavero and Caroline Ferrel of the Center on Race, Poverty, and the Environment.  Click below to watch the panel:

Morning Keynote Panel


Subsidizing Solar Energy: Lessons from Europe: Lesley McAllister, Professor of Law at the University of San Diego

November 19, 2012 - Room 1002

Lesley K. McAllister writes and teaches in the areas of environmental and natural resources law, climate change and energy law, comparative and international law, and property law. In addition to her appointment at the University of San Diego, she is an adjunct associate professor at the School of International Relations and Pacific Studies at University of California San Diego.

She completed her bachelor’s degree magna cum laude in civil engineering and the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs at Princeton University in 1991; her law degree with distinction at Stanford Law School in 2000; and her PhD in the Energy and Resources Group at the University of California Berkeley in 2004. During her graduate studies, she was the recipient of the Environmental Protection Agency Graduate Star Fellowship, the National Science Foundation Law and Social Science Dissertation Grant, the Stanford Law School Public Service Fellowship, and the Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation Fellowship.

Professor McAllister clerked for the Honorable Fern M. Smith of the Northern District of California in 2004-05 and worked previously as an attorney for Earthjustice and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Prior to law school she worked as an environmental consultant for ENVIRON in New Jersey and the Hualapai Tribe in Arizona, and as an environmental education volunteer for the Peace Corps in Costa Rica.

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


The California Energy Commission’s Role in Developing State Energy Policy: Michael Levy, Chief Counsel of the California Energy Commission

October 31, 2012 - Room 1002

Michael J. Levy is the Chief Counsel of the California Energy Commission. He supervises the team of 28 attorneys in the agency responsible for licensing all utility-scale thermal power plants in California, for managing the state’s Integrated Energy Policy Report, and for maintaining California’s appliance and building efficiency standards. Prior to his appointment, he served for ten years as an attorney with the State Water Resources Control Board, first as California’s lead attorney for “total maximum daily loads” (TMDLs), wetlands, and other Clean Water Act programs, and then as General Counsel to the Los Angeles Regional Water Quality Control Board.

Before his governmental service, Mr. Levy was an attorney in private practice in San Francisco, where he handled complex litigation and appeals. Mr. Levy earned his Master of Environmental Laws, cum laude, in natural resources and environment from Northwestern School of Law, Lewis & Clark College in 1998. He earned his Juris Doctorate from the University of San Diego in 1991, and his bachelor’s degree in 1988 from UC Davis in Political Science. He has served on a number of commissions for the City of Davis, holds several appointments as a Judge Pro Temp of the Sacramento Superior Court, and is an Appellate Mediator for the Third District Court of Appeal.

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


The Environmental Jurisprudence of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals: Hon. William A. Fletcher, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit

October 1, 2012 - Room 1001

A former Rhodes scholar, William Fletcher worked for the Office of Emergency Preparedness in the Executive Office of the President from 1970 to 1972. He clerked for Judge Stanley Weigel of the U.S. District Court in San Francisco and for Justice William J. Brennan Jr. of the U.S. Supreme Court before joining the UC Berkeley School of Law faculty in 1977.

In 1992, Fletcher was the Northern California director for President Clinton’s campaign. He has been a visiting professor at Stanford, Michigan and the University of Cologne, and he has taught at the Salzburg Seminar on American Legal Institutions. Fletcher received the UC Berkeley Distinguished Teaching Award in 1993. He is the coauthor, with Professors Geoffrey Hazard and Stephen Bundy, of a leading civil procedure casebook.

Nominated by President Bill Clinton, Fletcher was sworn in as a judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit in 1999.

A recording of this event may be viewed here.


The Role of Faith-Based Organizations in Environmental Policy-Making:The Reverend Canon Sally Grover Bingham, Founder of Interfaith Power & Light

September 18, 2012 - Room 1002

The Reverend Canon Sally Grover Bingham, an Episcopal priest and Canon for the Environment in the Diocese of California, has been active in the environmental community for 25 years. She is founder and president of the Regeneration Project, which is focused on its Interfaith Power & Light (IPL) campaign, a religious response to global warming. The IPL campaign includes a national network of more than 14,000 congregations with affiliated programs in 39 states.

The Rev. Bingham has brought widespread recognition to the link between faith and the environment, and as one of the first faith leaders to fully recognize global warming as a moral issue, she has mobilized thousands of religious people to put their faith into action through energy stewardship and advocacy. The Rev. Bingham serves on the national boards of the Environmental Defense Fund, the Environmental Working Group, and the advisory board of the Union of Concerned Scientists.

The Interfaith Power & Light campaign and the Rev. Bingham have received numerous awards including the 2007 U.S. EPA Climate Protection Award, the Purpose Prize, the Energy Globe Award, and commendation as a “sacred gift to the planet” by the World Wildlife Fund. In 2012, she received the Rachel Carson Award from the Audubon Society, the nation’s premiere award for women environmental leaders.

The Rev. Bingham has received honorary Doctorates of Divinity from the University of the South, the Church Divinity School of the Pacific, and the College of the Holy Cross. She is the lead author of Love God Heal Earth, a collection of 21 essays on environmental stewardship by religious leaders, published by St. Lynn’s Press.


Confronting Climate Change: The European Commission's Adaptation Strategy Dr. Barbara Pozzo, Professor of Environmental Law at the University of Milan

King Hall Room 1002

Increasing temperatures, rising sea level, and more intense and frequent extreme weather events constitute some of the contemporary challenges triggered by global climate change. These changes also affect the availability of crucial resources and the viability of important economic sectors that depend heavily on temperature and rainfall. Aware of the varying severity of climate impacts and the differing capacity to cope across regions within Europe, the European Commission established a collaborative framework to strengthen the European Union’s resilience to confront the impacts of climate change. Professor Barbara Pozzo will discuss the framework’s two-prong adaptation strategy: first, the revision of the relevant existing legislations that might be important for adaptation issues; and second, efforts to draft a specific EU Directive on climate change.

Barbara Pozzo is the Director of the Ph.D. Program in Comparative Law at the University of Milan and Professor of Comparative Law at Insubria University in Como, Italy. Her areas of expertise include environment law, energy and climate change law, comparative law, and law and literature. Professor Pozzo is currently a member of the “Forum of Legal Experts on Adaptation to Climate Change,” which is organized by the League of European Research Universities (LERU) and sustained by the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Climate Action (DG CLIMA). Professor Pozzo received her J.D. from the University of Milan and her Ph.D. in Comparative Law from the University of Florence.

This talk can be viewed online at this link.

This event is presented by the California Environmental Law & Policy Center and the California International Law Center and is co-sponsored by the Journal of International Law & Policy.

Spring 2012 Speakers' Series

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Prosecuting Environmental Crimes: Mike Ramsey, Butte County District Attorney and Scott Thorpe, California District Attorneys Association CEO

Butte County District Attorney Mike Ramsey has been a prosecutor for 35 years and the elected district attorney for 24 years. The son of a California state game warden, Ramsey has made protection of the environment one of the priorities of his office. As the current co-chair of the California District Attorneys Association's Environmental Protection Committee for the past decade and past chair of the Rural Counties Committee, Ramsey was one of the architects of the CDAA's Environmental Circuit Prosecutors Program.

Scott Thorpe got both his BA in Political Science and JD from UC Davis. He then spent over 30 years working in the California Attorney General's Office in the Criminal Law Division and the Executive Decision. His work included appeals, writs, trials, grand jury investigations, legislation, policy task forces, handling cases in 30 of 58 California counties and federal habeas corpus litigation. Since 2007, Thorpe has been the Chief Executive Officer of the California District Attorneys Association. CDAA trains over 2,600 member prosecutors, including 58 elected District Attorneys, and advocates on behalf of prosecutors with the Legislature and the Governor.


Spring 2012 Speakers' Series

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Matt Rodriguez, California Secretary for Environmental Protection

Matt Rodriguez was appointed California Secretary for Environmental Protection by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. in July 2011. As Secretary, Matt oversees the activities of the California Air Resources Board, the Department of Toxic Substances Control, the Department of Pesticide Regulation, the Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment and the State Water Resources Control Board. As a member of the Governor’s cabinet, he advises the Governor on environmental policy. He comes to the Agency with more than 24 years of environmental experience with the California Department of Justice where he served as a Deputy Attorney General from 1987 to 1999. In this capacity, he advised or represented the Attorney General and clients of the Land Law Section of the Attorney General’s Office. His clients included the California Coastal Commission, the State Lands Commission, and the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission. In 1999, he was appointed Senior Assistant Attorney General for the Land Law Section by Attorney General Bill Lockyer.

This talk can be viewed online at this link.


Spring 2012 Speakers' Series

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Fran Pavley, California State Senator

Senator Pavley took the helm of the Natural Resource and Water Committee at a challenging time. The Delta, which furnishes nearly 50% of our water supply, is no longer sustainable. Pavley joined other lawmakers in crafting legislation that will help develop a more reliable water supply, restore the Delta ecosystem and encourage investment in water management and conservation programs. Senator Pavley is also serving as the Chair of the Legislature’s Select Committee on the Environment, the Economy, and Climate Change. The committee is providing legislative oversight on a broad range of issues related to climate policy. She sees the requirements of California’s climate change law (AB 32) as an opportunity to foster innovation and green jobs -- the most promising engines to start the new economy. She seeks to create a clean, safe, secure energy future for California and the United States. Prior to her election to the Senate, Pavley served three terms in the California State Assembly. In addition to AB 32, she authored AB 1493 (Clean Car Regulations), now known as the “Pavley” law. President Barack Obama implemented a national standard modeled on the “Pavley” law. During a special ceremony in the White House Rose Garden, the president personally thanked Pavley for her work on reducing greenhouse gas emissions.

This talk can be viewed online.


Spring 2012 Speakers' Series

Monday, January 23, 2012

Ruth Coleman, Director, California Department of Parks and Recreation

Ruth Coleman was appointed Director of the California Department of Parks & Recreation in January 2002, after having joined the department in December 1999, as Deputy Director for Legislation. During her decade at State Parks she has overseen the acquisition of over 115,000 acres of land valued at over $682 million; the expenditure of over $650 million for 1,400 park construction projects including visitor centers, campgrounds, infrastructure improvements, historic preservation and natural resource restoration; and the distribution of $1.6 billion in bond funds for more than 5,000 grants to cities, counties and special districts to construct local park facilities. In the latter part of her tenure, she has steered the organization through several significant budget cutbacks. In 2010 she received the Distinguished Service Award from the National Association of State Park Directors.


Fall 2011 Speakers' Series

Thursday, November 10, 2011

David Victor, Director of the UC San Diego Laboratory on International Law and Regulation

Watch Professor Victor's presentation online.

David Victor is a professor at the School of International Relations and Pacific Studies and director of the School’s new Laboratory on International Law and Regulation. His research focuses on how the design of regulatory law affects issues such as environmental pollution and the operation of major energy markets. He is author of Global Warming Gridlock, which explains why the world hasn't made much diplomatic progress on the problem of climate change while also exploring new strategies that would be more effective. Prior to joining the faculty at UCSD, Victor served as director of the Program on Energy and Sustainable Development at Stanford University where he was also a professor at Stanford Law School. Professor Victor's talk was titled "Gridlock in International Law on Global Warming: New Strategies for Making Progress."

This event was co-sponsored by the California Environmental Law & Policy Center and the California International Law Center at UC Davis School of Law.


CEQA at 40: A Look Back, and Ahead

Friday, November 4, 2011

A full broadcast of the conference is available online.

The California Environmental Law & Policy Center held a major CEQA conference on Friday, November 4, 2011. This timely event brought together policymakers from all three branches of government, environmental lawyers, academics and students for a thoughtful examination of CEQA’s history and future. The conference provided a thoughtful review of the first 40 years of CEQA, focusing on how the law has developed since 1971, as well as comparisons with the concurrent evolution of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), “little NEPA” statutes in other states, and environmental impact laws from foreign nations.

Equally important, the conference focused on CEQA law and practice in the years to come. CEQA remains highly controversial, and a major policy and political debate is currently underway as to whether and how CEQA should be revised to address such challenging issues as renewable energy siting and climate change.


Fall 2011 Speakers' Series

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Frances Spivy-Weber, Board Vice-Chair, State Water Resources Control Board

Frances Spivy-Weber of Redondo Beach was elected Vice-Chair of the State Water Resources Control Board on February 17, 2009. Before being appointed to the Board, she served as the executive director of the Mono Lake Committee since 1997. From 1983 to 1992, Ms. Weber served as the director of international programs for the National Audubon Society. She previously was a legislative assistant for the Animal Welfare Institute from 1978 to 1982.

Ms. Weber was a member of the Bay-Delta Public Advisory Committee and co-chair of its Water Use Efficiency Committee. She also served as co-chair of the Southern California Water Dialogue and convener of the California Urban Water Conservation Council. She has served on many boards, including the Water Education Foundation, California Council of Land Trusts, and Clean Water Action/Clean Water Fund.


Fall 2011 Speakers' Series

Wednesday, September, 28, 2011

Damien Schiff, Senior Staff Attorney, Pacific Legal Foundation

As a senior staff attorney for Pacific Legal Foundation (PLF), Mr. Schiff has worked in a number of cases pertaining to the Endangered Species Act (ESA) and the Clean Water Act (CWA). He has been involved in a number of CWA cases concerning jurisdiction and judicial review.

Mr. Schiff spoke about the Sackett v. United States Environmental Protection Agency case, in which he recently successfully petitioned the Supreme Court for certiorari. In the order granting review, the justices indicated they would resolve two issues: 1) whether the Sacketts may seek pre-enforcement judicial review of the EPA compliance order under the APA; and 2) if not, whether the absence of such recourse to the courts violates their right to constitutional due process. This is a major case, with the potential to affect how environmental agencies are able to enforce environmental laws.


Fall 2011 Speakers' Series

Monday, September 12, 2011

Timothy Duane, Environmental Studies Professor, UC Santa Cruz

Timothy Duane is associate professor of law at Vermont Law School and associate professor of environmental studies at the University of California, Santa Cruz. An associate professor at the University of California at Berkeley from 1991-2009, he has law and policy experience in climate, water, energy, land use, conservation, and marine systems. Leading the nation's effort to produce a new paradigm for examination of the challenges posed by urban development in rural America, Professor Duane is particularly interested in land use and natural resources law, emphasizing the historical evolution of private and social interests, rights, and responsibilities in property.

Tim Duane spoke about "Greening the Grid" in California, focusing on policy options and recommendations to guide policy design and implementation for the transition to the Climate Change Era for electricity regulation, industry structure, and generation technology choice. The talk described the primary institutional forums and tools that will affect the electricity sector’s response to climate change, as well as to the obstacles that impede an economically efficient and environmentally responsible response.


Images of the Arctic and the Future They Suggest

September 1, 2011

Professor David Caron teaches international law and ocean and coastal law and policy at UC Berkeley School of Law. Please click below to view his talk at UC Davis School of Law:

Images of the Arctic and the Future They Suggest, Professor David Caron


25th Annual Environmental Law Super Symposium: The Greening of California— Achieving Green Goals in a Time of Limited Financial Resources

April 28, 2011

As California tightens its belt to deal with its serious fiscal issues, the need for environmental protection and enforcement continues unabated. This program featured not only top practitioners from agencies, state government, and private practice discussing recent trends and developments in environmental law, but also featured thought-provoking discussions regarding achieving balance between growing the economy, fiscal restraint, and environmental protection.


Spring 2011 Speakers' Series

April 12, 2011

Climate Change & the Supreme Court: Previewing AEP v. Connecticut

American Electric Power v. State of Connecticut was the most important environmental law case before the Supreme Court last year. The Court will address the issue of whether federal law allows states and private parties to sue utilities for contributing to global warming. King Hall Professors Vik Amar, Chris Elmendorf, Al Lin and Rick Frank provided a lively panel discussion of the legal issues, prospects and implications of this case.


Environmental Law Society 2011 Symposium

April 1, 2011

The Aftermath of the BP Oil Spill: A Reassessment of Drilling & Energy Policies

The 2011 UC Davis Environmental Law Society Symposium took a closer look at the political and legal implications of the 2010 BP Oil Spill, the largest oil spill in the United States' history. Morning panels covered the litigation following the BP Oil Spill and the statutory and regulatory adjustments catalyzed by the spill. Afternoon panels discussed federal and state preparations for prospective oil spills and California’s shifting energy landscape. The 2011 Symposium featured a keynote from Professor Richard Lazarus, Executive Director of the National Commission on the BP Deepwater Horizon Oil Spill and Offshore Drilling.


UC Davis Law Review 2011 Symposium

March 4, 2011

The Public Trust Doctrine: 30 Years Later

In 1980, the U.C. Davis School of Law sponsored and hosted a pioneering conference on the public trust doctrine. The conference, together with the scholarship it produced (see 14 U.C. Davis L. Rev., Vol 2 (1980)), proved to be enormously influential regarding the development of public trust law in subsequent years.

The focus of the 2011 symposium, co-sponsored by U.C. Davis Law School's newly-created California Environmental Law & Policy Center, was on how the public trust doctrine has evolved over the past three decades, and what the future holds for the public trust as a key component of natural resources law. The symposium brought together many of the nations foremost public trust scholars, litigators and jurists.


Spring 2011 Speakers' Series

February 17, 2011

Jared Huffman, California State Legislature Assemblymember

Assemblymember Jared Huffman, Chair of the California Assembly’s Water, Parks & Wildlife Committee, will speak to the King Hall community about California’s key environmental achievements and future challenges.  One of the state’s most influential environmental leaders, Huffman was a Senior Attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Council before being elected to the 6th Assembly District (Marin County) in 2006.  He is the first practicing environmental lawyer to be elected to the State Legislature in California history.


Local Agencies on the Cutting Edge- Emerging Challenges to Local Land Use Authority: Proposition 26, the Public Trust Doctrine, RLUIPA, and Takings Law

February 11, 2011

The symposium focused on issues of practical importance to lawyers and policymakers who care about local governments’ role in environmental and land-use regulation. The issues are of great relevance to Californians, especially in the wake of the passage of Proposition 26 in the November 2010 election. The symposium explored what the recently adopted Proposition 26 means for local government land use and environmental fees, recent legal developments relating to RLUIPA, the present and future of the public trust doctrine in California, and current and emerging issues in Takings Law. This event was a collaboration between The Municipal Law Institute of the League of California Cities and The UCLA School of Law Evan Frankel Environmental Law & Policy Program and co-sponsored by the UC Davis California Environmental Law & Policy Center and the UC Berkeley Center for Law, Energy and the Environment.


Spring 2011 Speakers' Series

January 24, 2011

California Energy Commission Chair Karen Douglas

Karen Douglas has been the Chair of the Energy Commission since February 2009. Karen was appointed to the Energy Commission by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in February 2008. She fills the Attorney position on the five-member Commission where four of the five members by law are required to have professional training in specific areas - engineering or physical science, environmental protection, economics, and law.

From 2005 to her appointment, Ms. Douglas served as director of the California Climate Initiative at Environmental Defense. Prior to going to Environmental Defense, Ms. Douglas spent four years at the Planning and Conservation League as the Natural Resources Director, General Counsel, and most recently, acting Executive Director. She has worked on a wide range of California natural resource and environmental protection issues, including the Imperial Irrigation District / San Diego water transfer, forest policy, and the California Environmental Quality Act.

Karen's speech addressed the complexities of energy regulation and management in California, and gave an in depth look in the recent push to bring California more renewable energy and a smarter grid.