Syllabus link here: International Environmental Law Syllabus Summer 2019 student

Required Texts for the Course:
Daniel Bodansky, The Art and Craft of International Environmental Law (Harvard University Press, 2011) and Thomas Schoenbaum & Michael Young, International Environmental Law and Policy: Cases, Materials & Problems Document Supplement (Carolina Academic Press, 2018)


June 19-21: Organochlorine Treaty Negotiations

General instructions were distributed via email on June 5. Confidential instructions were distributed by hard copy on June 12. Unless you arranged for an excused absence in advance, this is graded as a pass fail quiz.

June 18 (Noon to 6:30pm): ICCAT Field Trip

Our class is visiting the ICCAT Secretariat in Madrid. Attendance is taken. Bus leaves at 1pm.  Box lunches will be provided.  The Organochlorine negotiation will begin on the bus, with an announcement by the chair, and discussion of the process that will be used.  Be sure that you have read your general and confidential instructions by then.

June 18 (9 am): Class discussion of fisheries law

To prepare for the field trip, you need a basic understanding of the International Commission for the Conservation of Atlantic Tunas.

June 18 (8 am): Final Exam Due 

Your Final Exam is due by 8am on June 18, 2019 — El Escorial time.  Transmit the document, on a timely basis, by email to Mollie Light, in accordance with the email instructions she sent, which read as follows:

Good morning, Please email me directly with your final exam as a pdf attachment. IMPORTANT: FOR THE NAME OF THE PDF PLEASE PUT ENVIRONMENTAL AND YOUR AGN. THIS SHOULD ALSO BETHE SUBJECT LINE OF THE EMAIL. PLEASE DO NOT PUT YOUR NAME ON THE PDF OR ON THE EXAM. JUST THE AGN. if you have any questions,please let me know. Thank you, Mollie

Late exams, or exams with incorrect AGNs, receive a full letter grade drop. No excuses. Do not wait until the last minute and then complain about computer problems. (I had a judge reject a critical “notice of filing” because it was logged in by the clerk one day late despite the fact that there was a clear statutory exception and no prejudice to any party.)

The Final Exam was also attached to an email timestamped Thu 6/13/2019 5:45 AM.


June 17: No class.

June 13: Presentations & Important Postings

MARPO, Supplement at 527

Arctic Council, Supplement at 757

International Environmental Law Summary Slides

June 11-12: West Bank Water Agreement Negotiations

Your assignment has been distributed via email on June 5. Do not share confidential instructions with anyone not in your group, and do not discuss this issue with any of the mediators. Unless you arrange for an excused absence in advance, this is graded as a pass fail quiz.  By the way, if you are a mediator, here’s a crash course on how to perform:

June 10: Transboundary Pollution Exercise

The Trail Smelter Case.

pdf document here:  TrailSmelterCaseExcerpts [FYI, tried to download the case from the webpage, saved it on my drive as a pdf file, and deleted the pages you do not need to read. Using numbers in header corners, here is my attempt to simplify your reading:

  • Section “II” at 1945-1948 (discussing history 1896-1930s)
  • “Part Two” at 1948-1949, 1957 (discussing res judicata)
  • “Part Three” at 1962-1966 (discussing injunctive relief)
  • “Part Four” at 1966, 1968-1971, 1976-1977 (discussing regulation of the facility)
  • “Amendment” at 1978

If you want the whole case, find it here:

Please also read these excerpts from US-Mexico environmental agreements: ExcerptsMexicoUSAagreements

June 6 (Recommended readings for presentations): 

Presentation #3:

Convention for Protection of World Cultural & Natural Heritage, Supplement at 614

Presentation #4:

RAMSAR, Supplement at 609

June 5: Obstacles & Misinformation

Bodansky, Chapter 7 (obstacles) and 11 (Effectiveness)

Agenda 21, supplement pp. 31-34, 61-65

Draft Articles on the Responsibilities of International Organizations, Supplement at 763

EU Water Framework Directive, Water Note 1

June 4: The Role of the UN and the Human Right to Water

Bodansky, Chapter 6 (who’s who)

The Nairobi Declaration, Supplement p. 85

UN Committee    

USA Response

UN General Assembly

USA abstention

June 3: Norms, Norm Creation, and the Role of the UN

Bodanksy, Chapter 5 (norms)

Legal principles for Environmental Protection & Sustainable Development, Supplement at 14

Convention on Biological Diversity, Supplement at 657 (especially Articles 1 & 8)

May 30 (Recommended readings for student presentations):

CITES, Supplement at 635

GATT, Supplement at 301

Agreement Establishing WTO, Supplement at 309

Presentation Evaluation Form

May 29: Big Picture on Causes, Cures and Economics

Bodansky, Chapters 3 & 4

Garrett Hardin, The Tragedy of the Commons

May 28: The International Convention on the Regulation of Whaling

Schoenbaum Supplement, Whaling documents (pp. 474-479)

Cetacean Research Institute v. Sea Shepard, 725 F.3d 940 (2013)

Whaling in the Antarctic (Australia v. Japan) Summary of Opinion (pp. 1-12) and Full Opinion (FYI only)

May 27: What is IEL? History? 

Bodansky Chapters 1 & 2