Environmental Law Institute Offers Special Programming in Celebration of its 50th Year

February 2019

(Washington, DC): December 22, 2019, will mark the 50th Anniversary of the Environmental Law Institute. While ELI’s official birthday is still 11 months away, ELI will celebrate its 50th during the entirety of 2019, holding special events, programs, and publications that look back at the last 50 years and look forward to the next. Throughout the year, ELI will highlight monthly themes central to the field of environmental law and policy.

Since our beginning, working to ensure environmental protection and compliance has been at the core of ELI’s work. Just last month, ELI, in partnership with UN Environment, released the first ever global assessment of environmental rule of law, which found that despite prolific growth in environmental laws and agencies worldwide over the last four decades, weak enforcement is a global trend that is exacerbating environmental threats. Our focus for February will therefore be “Environmental Compliance: A Foundational Objective.”

On February 13, ELI will travel to the law offices of Greenberg Traurig in Houston, Texas, for an in-person and webinar event, CERCLA and the U.S. Department of Defense.  There, leading experts will discuss the core objectives of CERCLA, how these have evolved over time, the issues surrounding the remediation and cleanup of Department of Defense sites, approaches to working with regulatory agencies, cutting-edge and emerging technologies for damage assessments and remediation activities, and more. And on February 28, ELI will offer a webinar, Rethinking the Federal-State Relationship. The future of the federal-state relationship in the environmental regulatory context remains uncertain as state and federal priorities sometimes conflict. Yet if cooperative federalism is to function as intended, state and federal regulators must work together  to align their programs and priorities to current realities.

Congressional oversight also plays a large role in environmental compliance. Our featured article from the January/February issue of The Environmental Forum takes a look at the 116th Congress and the role it might play under the current administration.

Voluntary mechanisms aimed at achieving environmental protection are also on the rise. In Rise of the Shadow ESG Regulators: Investment Advisers, Sustainability Accounting, and Their Effects on Corporate Social Responsibility, the featured article from this month’s issue of ELR’s News & Analysis, authors examine whether new social and environmental reporting standards will help improve accountability for corporate environmental disclosure.

ELI traces its origins to a national conference on the emerging field of environmental law held at the Airlie House in Virginia in September 1969. Attended by 50 lawyers, practitioners, and academics from across the country, the conference had a significant impact on the legal profession by initiating fertile exchange among many lawyers who were breaking new ground. ELI has since grown to become a major research, education, and publication center for the full range of environmental professionals. Often described as a one-of-a kind environmental law think-and-do tank, ELI today offers a non-partisan, objective forum; convening capacity and in-house technical strength; and first-rate research, educational programs, and publications.

Visit https://www.eli.org/eli-50th-anniversary for details and updates.