Policy Practicum: Court-Supervised Remediation of Complex Environmental Problems


Course Code:
LAW 413J
Law Honors/Pass/Restrd Cr/Fail


The Law School's Environmental Law Clinic is representing an environmental group in a lawsuit against the Monterey County Water Resources Agency. The suit asserts that the agency has been polluting both surface and ground waters in the Salinas River Valley and Elkhorn Slough by discharging pesticide-laden farm irrigation run-off in violation of California environmental laws. If the plaintiffs prevail, the appropriate injunctive relief is likely to be complex. Neither the precise dimensions of the problem nor those of the most effective interventions to remedy it are known. So, ideally, relief should combine adaptive flexibility for the agency, meaningful accountability to the plaintiffs and the public, and an opportunity for all parties to learn in the process of the implementation. Policy Lab students will work with Professors Deborah Sivas (lead plaintiffs¿ counsel) and Bill Simon on some aspect of a possible remedial regime. Students may normally receive no more than four units for a Policy Lab practicum and no more than a total of eight units of Policy Lab practicums and Directed Research projects combined may be counted toward graduation unless additional units for graduation are approved in advanced by the Petitions Committee. A student cannot receive a letter grade for more than eight units of independent research (Policy Lab practicum, Directed Research, Senior Thesis, and/or Research Track). Any units taken in excess of eight will be graded on a mandatory pass basis. Consent Application: To apply for this course, students must complete and e-mail the Consent Application Form available on the SLS Registrar's Office website (see Registration and Selection of Classes for Stanford Law Students) to the instructors. See Consent Application Form for submission deadline. Elements used in grading: Class Participation, Final Paper.

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