Natural Resources and Energy Law

Elective Course
Course Number: LAW 595
Credits: 3

This course explores legal doctrines and conflicts associated with the ownership, allocation, use and protection of extractive and energy-producing natural resources with emphasis on four specific resources: timber, hardrock minerals, coal, and hydroelectric power. Using these resources as the focal points, the course evaluates how rights to resources arise and how rights are severed and transferred separate from land in various transactions. The course also considers the application of various statutes to resource and energy development, including the National Environmental Policy Act, the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, the 1872 Mining Law, the National Forest Management Act, the Federal Land Policy and Management Act, the Endangered Species Act, the Federal Power Act, the Northwest Power Act, and several administrative law doctrines. The second part of the course looks at some of the energy regulatory and transmission issues applicable to coal and hydropower, with special emphasis on regional issues in the northern Rocky Mountain and Pacific Northwest states. Grade is based on a paper and class participation. Course materials are various handouts and online readings.