Happy December!

Happy December dear readers!

After an incredibly busy fall that has been filled with blogging silence because other work was the priority, I’m back — just in time to draw attention to the 2015 UN Climate Change Conference in Paris. There’s a twitter feed for the conference which you can see at the hashtag #COP21 or follow @COP21. The link above also takes you to their digital news hub for the conference — there’s several interesting articles there, as well as updates on the conference as it progresses.

I’ve been keeping an eye on the press around COP21 while traveling and working the last few weeks. One of the stories that caught my eye today was in today’s on-line The New York Times. In Marshall Islands and Sea Level Rise, Coral Davenport and photographer Josh Haner present an interesting discussion and analysis of the effects of sea level rise on the Marshall Islands. This is an issue in emergency management and disaster response that has been on my mind for years, particularly after living in Rhode Island and studying Palazzolo v. Rhode Island and other takings case that involved coastal zone management. The photography and videos that Josh Haner made for this particular story are compelling visual arguments for why sea level rise needs to be a focus in policy discussions concerning future emergency preparedness. However, this isn’t simply an issue for disasters that occur during a particular event — the article demonstrates that sea level rise is having a devastating impact on the daily lives of those living near coasts and on islands. It’s worth taking a look and reading the article because it provides an account of how this global process is creating daily difficulties for many people.

With the end of the academic semester and the completion of a couple of projects comes time to do some other writing. Watch for upcoming blog entries on property rights, earthquakes and international disaster recovery issues over the next few weeks!

Release of the Waters of the US Rule

Welcome back from Memorial Day weekend!

I have been swamped with other work, and so I have not been blogging a lot. But I wanted to take a break from all that other work to alert my readers: it appears that the EPA is likely to release the Waters of the US rule this week. As many of you know, this rule will have a significant impact on land use issues anywhere water is deemed navigable. In fact, the issue of what constitutes “navigable” water and its tributaries lies at the heart of the political tensions around this rule.

From the Los Angeles TimesWith EPA’s proposed clean water rule, Obama again takes an executive action to build his environmental legacy

Here’s the EPA site on the issue: Clean Water Rule

I am headed to Seattle to attend the Annual Meeting of the Law and Society Association this week. I am looking forward to hearing the most recent sociolegal research on property, disasters, land use planning in both rural and urban spaces, and legal mobilization. While I do that I will try to keep track of what’s happening with the EPA rule — most likely via Twitter. You can follow me there (@LJH1969).