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Pollution as Public Nuisance: VT Law School Panel to Discuss Supreme Court's New Ruling in Global Warming Case

June 23, 2011

SOUTH ROYALTON, VT -- Vermont Law School scholars and a federal judge will discuss the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling earlier this week in the global warming case American Electric Power v. Connecticut at 4:30 p.m., Thursday, June 30 in the Chase Community Center.

Image of Supreme CourtThe Supreme Court on June 20 unanimously overturned a 2009 federal appeals court decision that allowed several states and environmental groups to sue coal-fired electric utilities on the grounds that their emissions create a public nuisance by contributing to global warming. The case tried to use common law -- or a judge-made remedy -- to force industries to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but the Supreme Court said the matter must be addressed by the Environmental Protection Agency under the Clean Air Act rather than the courts. The EPA plans to make a final decision about whether it will issue final greenhouse gas regulations by May 2012.

VLS professors Pat Parenteau and John Echeverria will joined by Judge Peter Hall of U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, who wrote the opinion that the Supreme Court reviewed in the AEP case.

The panel discussion is part of the VLS Environmental Law Center's Hot Topics in Environmental Law Summer Brown Bag Lecture Series. Each lecture is worth one VBA CLE credit. Lectures are free and open to the public.

CONTACT: John Cramer, Associate Director of Media Relations
Office: 802.831.1106, cell: 540.798.7099, home: 802.649.2235,

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