Lectures and Forums

The Environmental Law and Policy Program brings renowned scholars in the field of environmental law and policy to the Law School each year, giving students the opportunity to explore current issues and learn from leaders in the environmental law movement in the United States. Notable speakers who visited Michigan Law in recent years include Joseph L. Sax, one of the original leaders of the environmental law movement and a former Michigan Law professor; Larry Schweiger, president and CEO of the National Wildlife Federation; Carol Browner, former administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency; and former Michigan Governor Jennifer Granholm.

Videos from events that have occurred during the current academic year are provided below. Additional information about the various ELPP lecture series, forums, and conferences—as well as videos for events that occurred during previous academic years—can be found using the navigational links on the left.

Carol M. Browner
Carol M. Browner, Administrator, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (1993–2001), 2007–08 ELPP Lecture Series
Steven E. Chester
Steven E. Chester, Director, Michigan Department of Environmental Quality, 2007–08 ELPP Lecture Series
Lisa Heinzerling
Lisa Heinzerling, Professor of Law, Georgetown University Law Center, ELPP inaugural Conference (Fall 2008)
Miriam Horn
Miriam Horn, Environmental Defense Fund, author, former senior editor at U.S. News and World Report, panelist, ELPP inaugural Conference (Fall 2008)
Jerome Ringo
Jerome Ringo, President, The Apollo Alliance; Chair of the Board, National Wildlife Federation (2005–2007), 2008–09 ELPP Lecture Series
Larry J. Schweiger
Larry J. Schweiger, President and Chief Executive Officer, National Wildlife Federation, 2009–10 ELPP Lecture Series
Todd D. Stern
Todd D. Stern, Special Envoy for Climate Change, U.S. Department of State, 2010–11 ELPP Lecture Series
Ronald J. Tenpas
Ronald J. Tenpas, Assistant Attorney General, United States Department of Justice (ENRD), 2008–09 ELPP Lecture Series
B. Lynn Winmill
The Honorable B. Lynn Winmill, Chief Judge, United States Court, District of Idaho, 2007–08 ELPP Lecture Series
Jennifer M. Granholm
The Honorable Jennifer M. Granholm, Governor, State of Michigan (2002–2010), ELPP inaugural Conference (Fall 2008)
Gary S. Guzy
Gary S. Guzy, Deputy Director and General Counsel for the White House Council on Environmental Quality, ELPP Conference 2010
John C. Cruden
John C. Cruden, President, Environmental Law Institute, featured speaker, ELPP Conference 2012
Richard J. Lazarus
Richard J. Lazarus, Howard and Katherine Aibel Professor of Law, Harvard Law School, featured speaker, ELPP Conference 2012
Bob Perciasepe
Bob Perciasepe, Deputy Administrator, U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, keynote speaker, ELPP Conference 2012
collapse : September
U.S. EPA Update: Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation, a discussion with Susan Hedman
Program: ELPP Lecture Series
Date: 9/29/2014
Time: 5:00 p.m.
Location: South Hall room 1225

A recording of Ms. Hedman's talk can be viewed here​.

Please join the Environmental Law & Policy Program in welcoming Susan Hedman, Administrator for EPA's Region 5 Office in Chicago. Her discussion will focus on the EPA's Clean Power Plan proposal.

This event, which is free and open to the public, will immediately be followed by a reception. The event is co-sponsored by the University of Michigan Energy Institute, the Graham Sustainability Institute, and the Erb Institute.

Susan Hedman was appointed by President Barack Obama to be EPA Region 5 Administrator on Earth Day 2010. She directs EPA’s operations in the six-state Great Lakes region, which includes Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota, as well as 35 federally-recognized tribal governments. One of her most important roles is that of Great Lakes National Program Manager, in which she oversees restoration and protection of the largest freshwater system in the world. She leads a team of over one thousand scientists, engineers, lawyers, environmental specialists and administrative staff in the Region 5 Office.

Before accepting the President’s appointment, Hedman was environmental counsel and senior assistant attorney general in the Illinois Attorney General’s office, where she focused on litigation and legislation relating to environmental protection, energy efficiency, renewable energy, carbon capture technology and associated consumer issues. Previously, Hedman was chief legal officer for the Geneva-based United Nations Compensation Commission tribunal that handled claims for environmental damage from the oil fires in Kuwait and releases of oil in the Persian Gulf, as well as the costs of de-mining and disposal of unexploded ordnance from the 1990 Gulf War.

Hedman has a Ph.D. from the Gaylord Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, a M.A. from the La Follette School of Public Affairs and a J.D. from the School of Law at the University of Wisconsin. She has over 35 years of experience working on environmental and energy issues.

collapse : October
ELPP Career Series: Howard Learner
Program: ELPP Careers in Environmental Law Series
Date: 10/9/2014
Time: 11:55 a.m. - 12:50 p.m.
Location: South Hall room 1020
A video-recording of Professor Learner's talk is available here.
Please join us for the first talk as part of the 2014-2015 ELPP Careers Series. Howard Learner, MLaw adjunct professor and President & Executive Director of the Environmental Law & Policy Center, will speak about his career trajectory. A free, non-pizza lunch will be served.

ELPP Lecture Series: Sue Biniaz
Program: ELPP Lecture Series
Date: 10/21/2014
Time: 12:00 PM
Location: South Hall room 1020
Susan Biniaz is a former deputy legal adviser at the U.S. Department of State. She was the State Department's lead climate change lawyer for more than 20 years and was considered to be the Obama Administration's top international lawyer handling climate-change issues. 

collapse : November
Careers in Environmental Law Series: Stacey Mitchell
Program: ELPP Careers in Environmental Law Series
Date: 11/13/2014
Time: 11:45 a.m. - 12:50 p.m.
Location: South Hall room 1020

A video-recording of Ms. Mitchell's talk is available here.

​Please join us for the latest installment of the ELPP Careers Series. A free, non-pizza lunch will be provided.

Stacey Mitchell is the Deputy General Counsel for EPA in Washington, DC. She is a former head of the Environmental Crimes Section of the US Department of Justice. Ms. Mitchell earned her undergraduate degree from Colby College and attended Tulane University Law School. After graduating she joined the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, where she prosecuted sex crimes, narcotics, and even murder, before returning to her original passion for environmental protection.

ELPP Lecture Series: Michael Wara
Program: ELPP Lecture Series
Date: 11/20/2014
Time: 11:45 AM
Location: South Hall room 1020

A video recording of this lecture can be viewed here.

Please join us for the latest installment of the ELPP Lecture Series. Professor Michael Wara, Associate Professor of Law at Stanford Law School, will be the featured speaker. 

A non-pizza lunch will be served. This event is free and open to the public. 

An expert on energy and environmental law, Michael Wara’s research focuses on climate and electricity policy. Professor Wara’s current scholarship lies at the intersection between environmental law, energy law, international relations, atmospheric science, and technology policy. Professor Wara was formerly a geochemist and climate scientist and has published work on the history of the El Niño/La Niña system and its response to changing climates, especially those warmer than today. The results of his scientific research have been published in premier scientific journals, including Science and Nature.​

collapse : January
ELPP Lecture Series: Raymond Ludwiszewski
Program: ELPP Lecture Series
Date: 1/21/2015
Time: 11:50 a.m.
Location: South Hall room 1020
You can view a video recording of this event here.
Please join us for the latest installment of the ELPP Lecture Series. Raymond Ludwiszewski, partner in the Washington, DC, office of Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher, will be the featured speaker. He will be speaking about climate litigation.

This event is free and open to the public.

Mr. Ludwiszewski joined the firm's Environment and Natural Resources Practice Group after spending eight years in senior legal positions in the United States government dealing with environmental regulatory issues and litigation in the Environmental Protection Agency and the Justice Department.

collapse : February
ELPP Career Series: Monica Schwebs
Program: ELPP Careers in Environmental Law Series
Date: 2/4/2015
Time: 11:50 a.m.
Location: South Hall room 1020

A video recording of this lecture can be viewed here.

Please join us for the latest installment of the Environmental Law & Policy Program's Career in Environmental Law speaker series. This event is free and open to the public.

Monica Schwebs, of counsel at Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP, has deep expertise in federal and state energy and environmental regulatory matters. She represents a variety of clients including developers, financial institutions, utilities and government agencies. On behalf of clients, she appears before federal and state agencies, the California Independent System Operator and the courts. Prior to joining the firm in 2006, Monica spent six years working as staff counsel for the California Energy Commission. While at the Commission, she worked on federal and state energy and environmental law issues. She handled a wide variety of matters relating to power plant licensing, renewable energy, transmission, natural gas (including liquefied natural gas), petroleum refining and oil pipelines, hydroelectric licensing, appliance energy efficiency standards, and climate change. She represented the Commission in judicial proceedings in both federal and state courts and in administrative proceedings, including proceedings before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the California Public Utilities Commission and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Environmental Appeals Board. Before entering state service, Monica served as a trial attorney for the U.S. Dept. of Justice, Environment and Natural Resources Division, in Washington, D.C. She served as lead counsel in federal court cases for many federal agencies, including the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The cases she handled were brought under a variety of environmental laws, including air, water, coastal zone management, hazardous waste and pesticide laws. Prior to entering public service, Monica practiced both energy and environmental law at a major national firm in its Washington, D.C., office.

collapse : March
 ELPP Lecture Series: William Brighton
Program: ELPP Lecture Series
Date: 3/25/2015
Time: 11:50 a.m.
Location: South Hall room 1020

​Please join us for the next installment of the 2014-2015 ELPP Lecture Series. William Brighton, '78, will speak about civil enforcement of environmental law.

William D. Brighton is an Assistant Chief in the Environmental Enforcement Section, Environment & Natural Resources Division, U.S. Department of Justice. Before joining the Department of Justice in 1986, he clerked for Judge Myron H. Bright, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit, and worked at a Washington, D.C. law firm, Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering. Mr. Brighton currently supervises civil environmental enforcement cases in the six-state area covered by EPA’s Region 5 office in Chicago. He has also served for many years as the Environment Division’s senior advisor on issues relating to natural resource damages. Mr. Brighton was lead counsel on the first federal lawsuit for natural resource damages under CERCLA (In re: Acushnet River & New Bedford Harbor) and on the natural resource damage claims arising from the EXXON VALDEZ oil spill. More recently, he managed the “Bunker Hill Litigation” (U.S. v. ASARCO), which concerns cleanup costs and natural resource damages resulting from 100 years of mining and metal processing activities in the Coeur d’Alene River Basin of Idaho.

This event is free and open to the public.

Michigan Law Wordmark Print View