ABA Journal

Environmental Law

723 ABA Journal Environmental Law articles.

Tree ordinance was an unconstitutional taking, 6th Circuit rules

A Michigan township’s ordinance requiring property owners to replace trees that they remove from their property or pay into a tree fund was an unconstitutional condition on their rights under the takings clause, a federal appeals court has ruled.

Disbarred lawyer who fought Chevron gets prison time for disobeying court orders

Disbarred environmental lawyer Steven Donziger was sentenced to six months in prison Friday for refusing to surrender his electronic devices and disobeying other court orders in a suit against him by the Chevron Corp.

As more courts use facility dogs, some defense lawyers object

In a justice system that can sometimes appear hostile, facility dogs can comfort child witnesses as they talk about the most traumatic experiences of their lives. Because the dogs lie at children’s feet in the witness box, jurors may never see them. But according to some defense lawyers, when judges say witnesses will be assisted by canines, that makes them appear more sympathetic or believable, violating the due process rights of their clients.

Comfort dogs can be used to assist witnesses testifying in criminal trials, top state court rules

Trial courts may allow comfort dogs for witnesses at criminal trials in appropriate circumstances, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has ruled. The court on Wednesday affirmed the 2018 third-degree murder conviction of Sheron Jalen Purnell, ruling that the trial court did not abuse its discretion by allowing a comfort dog during the testimony of a minor with autism.

Was your turkey raised by ‘independent family farmers’? Activists increasingly target food claims

An increasing number of class action lawsuits are being filed against the food and beverage industry as activists challenge corporate claims about their humane and sustainable practices.

SCOTUS justices pause reinstatement of remain-in Mexico policy, won’t stop Obama center construction

Supreme Court justices on Friday acted on two requests to block court rulings on immigration and construction of a presidential center that is opposed by environmentalists.

88 of 100 top law firms ‘undertook work that worsened climate change,’ new report says; which ones got A’s?

Only three Vault Law 100 law firms received an A grade in a new report by Law Students for Climate Accountability, while three dozen received a failing grade of F.

ABA Hybrid Annual Meeting convenes members online and in Chicago

The American Bar Association is hosting its first-ever hybrid annual meeting, which will bring together members for both virtual and in-person events in Chicago this week.

‘It’s time to pay the piper’: Ex-lawyer found guilty of criminal contempt in long-running Chevron battle

Disbarred human rights lawyer Steven Donziger was found guilty of criminal contempt Monday for refusing to comply with court orders in a long-running battle with the Chevron Corp. over pollution in Ecuador.

Top Texas court rejects case, then agrees to hear it after appellant donates $250K to reelection PAC

In October, the Apache Corp., a Houston oil company, was unable to persuade the Texas Supreme Court to hear its appeal of a paralegal’s retaliation award of about $900,000 in damages and attorney fees.

Chicago’s lakefront is an accident of history, but can it teach us how to preserve land for public use?

Chicago's lakefront, with its parks, museums, beaches and public spaces, is an accident of history. But can we take lessons from that history to create sustainable and environmentally responsible public spaces?

Afternoon Briefs: Webinar considers legal profession’s caregiving bias; animal rights lawyer pleads guilty

Webinar will consider caregiving bias in legal profession

The ABA Commission on Women in the Profession will examine how the legal profession can ensure the success of mothers and caregivers…

Judge tosses 238 oil-spill cases, citing law firm’s failure to respond to discovery requests

A federal judge in Pensacola, Florida, has dismissed 238 cases filed for cleanup workers who blame their medical problems on the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

Afternoon Briefs: Derek Chauvin sentenced; judge won’t toss climate change suit

Chauvin sentenced for George Floyd’s death

A Minnesota judge on Friday sentenced fired Minneapolis police officer Derek Chauvin to 22.5 years years in prison for killing George Floyd

In closing brief, disbarred environmental lawyer claims his prosecution is ‘run by an oil company’

A closing brief filed on behalf of disbarred environmental lawyer Steven Donziger contends that the criminal contempt case against him “has all the trappings of a deeply troubled and conflicted prosecution run by an oil company.”

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