Vol. XLIV No. 1

The Public Trust As an Antimonopoly Doctrine

Abstract: The public trust doctrine originated—and has persisted in American law—as antimonopoly protection. From the time of its recognition by American courts in the early nineteenth century, the doctrine has protected the public against private monopolization of natural resources, beginning with tidal waters and wild animals. Ensuing public trust case law has extended the scope […]

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Inverse Condemnation and Fracking Disasters: Government Liability for the Environmental Consequences of Hydraulic Fracturing Under a Constitutional Takings Theory

Abstract: The practice of hydraulic fracturing, more commonly known as fracking, risks a number of dangerous environmental consequences. Notably, fracking operations can contaminate the underlying water table. Contamination of groundwater can disrupt the access of a nearby property to both potable drinking water and viable commercial irrigation. Usually, when a fracking operation results in this […]

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Mercury’s Toxic Process: How Bad Science and Bad Decisions Caused a Public Health Crisis

Abstract: Since 1998, ethylmercury, a vaccine preservative, has often been confused with methylmercury, a dangerous neurotoxin, by the government and public. This confusion has led to a decrease in vaccination rates and an increase in the spread of preventable disease. Despite significant efforts to educate the public on the inaccuracy of studies linking ethylmercury to […]

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An Examination of New York’s Martin Act as a Tool to Combat Climate Change

Abstract: Environmental statutes and regulations in the United States have largely failed to comprehensively control the human activities that cause climate change. This Note examines a novel approach to the matter in the form of an investigation led by New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman to discover how ExxonMobil incorporates its climate change research into […]

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Microbeads and the Toxics Use Reduction Act: Preventing Pollution at Its Source

Abstract: Microbead pollution presents a significant threat to human health and the environment. As a result, Congress enacted a national ban on microbeads in 2015. This ban is a drastic, reactionary measure that fails to address the continued threat posed by already existing pollution. In addition, the ban represents a continued preference for the command-and-control […]

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Sturgeon v. Frost: A Limited Holding Reveals an Environmentally Hesitant Post-Scalia Court

Abstract: The first environmental case before the United States Supreme Court after the death of Justice Antonin Scalia, Sturgeon v. Frost, involved the National Park Service’s authority to regulate hovercraft use over a segment of river running through lands under its authority pursuant to the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act. The plaintiff sought to […]

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A Consent Decree Abroad: Extraterritorial Enforcement of an EPA Consent Decree in United States v. Volvo Powertrain Corp.

Abstract: Although not as prominent in the public eye as automobile engines, emissions from non-road engines contribute significantly to global air pollution.  In 2005, the United States Government fined Volvo Powertrain Corp. seventy-two million dollars for manufacturing non-road engines at its foreign subsidiary because these engines were not in compliance with emissions standards and therefore […]

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A Narrowing of Section 1983 Claims: How Gonzaga Has Limited Recovery for Victims of Lead Poisoning in Federal Court

Abstract: Dellita Johnson brought a claim against the City of Detroit on behalf of her minor son, asserting that her son sustained lead poisoning from the public housing unit in which they lived. She brought claims under 42 U.S.C. § 1983 for the deprivation of federal rights created under provisions of the United States Housing Act, […]

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