Special Topics: 11.S967
Title: Laws of the Land: Land Use and Environmental Law
Instructors: Justin Steil
Start: H1, Tuesdays and Thursdays, 2:00-3:30
This half-semester course examines how the control of the development and use of land relates to environmental protection, climate change, and environmental justice. It begins with a brief introduction to the U.S. legal system. It explores the legal process of land transfer and the legal structure of development rights and the regulation of land use in the United States. It introduces the bases for constitutional challenges to land use regulations and how courts consider claims arising from constitutional protections regarding takings, substantive and procedural dueprocess, equal protection, and freedom of expression, highlighting the intersection of land use law with climate change. The course also introduces students to the broad dimensions of several of the major federal environmental statutes relevant to land use, including the National Environmental Policy Act and the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act. It concludes by discussing state and local efforts to address climate change through land use regulation.