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Environmental Law Center

2013 Fall Faculty Speakers Series

12:45pm - 2:00pm
Cornell Library Seminar Room, Vermont Law School

The Julien and Virginia Cornell Library and Environmental Law Center are pleased to co-host the Fall Faculty Speaker Series, featuring a variety of presentation topics about recent scholarship and impact.

All lectures are free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served.

PDF LogoView the Fall Faculty Speakers Series Poster

September 10th
"The Method(s) Behind Our Madness"
Laurie Ristino, Associate Professor of Law and Director, Center for Agriculture and Food Systems

Professor Ristino discusses the strategy behind the Center for Agriculture and Food Systems's (CAFS) approach to achieving its dual mission, including curriculum development, projects, outreach and related strategic planning and media.

October 8th
"Lies, Damn Lies, and Tellico Dam: The True Story Behind the Landmark Case of TVA v Hill"
Zygmunt Jan Broël Plater, Professor of Law, Boston College Law School

Professor Plater tells the intriguing story of how he and his students in Tennessee carried the case for six years up from Tennessee through the corridors of federal government and the Supreme Court, the subject of his new book from Yale University Press.

October 22nd
"Generally Recognized As Safe?: Analyzing Flaws in the FDA's Approach to GRAS Additives"
Laurie Beyranevand, Associate Professor of Law and Assistant Director, Center for Agriculture and Food Systems

As consumer demand for natural food products with fewer ingredients grows, so does curiosity and concern about the many food additives approved for use in the United States. While additives have long held an important place in the food supply, due largely to their preservative and other beneficial functions, the legitimate concerns of advocates and consumers regarding the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) safety assessment and treatment of additives appear to be falling on deaf ears. This talk will address the ability of the FDA to reconsider its interpretation of safety under the Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act to more adequately protect consumers from substances the agency has long considered "safe", but which are proving to be dangerous to human health.

November 5
"The Story of American Environmentalism: 45 Years in 45 Minutes"
James Gustave Speth, Professor of Law

With roots in the 1960's and earlier, American Environmentalism burst onto the scene with Earth Day in 1970, the year NRDC, EDF, CEQ, and others got cranking. One shudders to think how bad things would be without the environmental organizations and laws and their many accomplishments in the ensuing decades. Fast forward to today, and it is a fair conclusion that while we have won many victories, we are still losing the planet. How did this happen, and what is to be done?

PDF LogoRead the lecture (PDF format).

November 19th
"Other People's Houses: How Government Helped Rogue Bankers Grow the Mortgage Crisis"
Jennifer Taub, Associate Professor of Law

Other People's Houses reveals how decades of regulatory failure caused the mortgage crisis that began in 2007 and spread to a broader financial crisis in 2008, countering false claims that it was inevitable, "no one saw it coming," and subprime borrowers were to blame. In this book, Taub chronicles how government officials helped bankers inflate the toxic-mortgage-backed housing bubble, and after it burst left homeowners largely to fend for themselves.