Georgetown Finals Aff

Plan

The United States federal government should create is a substantive obligation in NEPA to evaluate downstream emissions from polluting activities and that climate change is a sufficient basis to reevaluate pollution standards in response to local and transnational soft legal mechanisms.

1AC

 

US environmental law in general and NEPA in particular are based on a notion that the environment is static and doctrine remains final and unresponsive to unplanned changes in the environment – this demands reconsideration and strengthening of restrictions in response to climatic changes – only court action overcomes agency dynamism

Flatt, Tom & Elizabeth Taft Distinguished Professor of Environmental Law and Director of the Center for Climate, Energy, Environment, and Economics at the University of North Carolina School of Law, ‘17

(Victor B., “Unsettled: How Climate Change Challenges a Foundation of Our Legal System, and Adapting the Legal State,” BYU Law Review, Volume 16, Issue 5)

Thus, our entire legislative and regulatory infrastructure concerning the physical world is based on

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complex problems are not necessarily solved by more complicated regulatory management schemes.149

 

Creating a substantive obligation in NEPA and CAA review to address evolving pollution claims is essential to dynamic responses to adaptive problems – disrupts notions of static legal response by framing environmental law as fundamentally unsettled

Flatt, Tom & Elizabeth Taft Distinguished Professor of Environmental Law and Director of the Center for Climate, Energy, Environment, and Economics at the University of North Carolina School of Law, ‘17

(Victor B., “Unsettled: How Climate Change Challenges a Foundation of Our Legal System, and Adapting the Legal State,” BYU Law Review, Volume 16, Issue 5)

The resource adaptation literature thus explores and explains many potential legal fixes to address the

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having options to alter “final” decisions based on changing physical parameters.

 

That’s the best centering point for a new governance model – addresses regulatory fragmentation by engaging local, indigenous, and transnational legal rationales

Osofsky et al., Professor, Director, Energy Transition Lab – University of Minnesota Law School, ‘16

(Jessia Shadian, PhD, Nansen Professor, University of Akureyri; Senior Fellow, Bill Graham Centre

for Contemporary History, Trinity College, University of Toronto, and, Sara L

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and these regulations and soft law tools themselves directly borrow from one another.

 

Specifically key to innovative legal claims to regulate short lived pollutants in the Arctic – has immediate climate benefits and addresses the fastest exigencies of warming – our mechanism breaks up state-centered spheres of legal negotiation

Khan, Doctorate in Law with specialization in International Environmental Law, Postdoctoral Researcher at the Centre for Climate Change, Energy and Environmental Law based at the University of Eastern Finland, March, ‘17

(Sabaa, “The Global Commons through a Regional Lens: The Arctic Council on Short-Lived Climate Pollutants,” Transnational Environmental Law, Volume 6, Issue 1, pp. 131-152)

As short-lived climate pollutants (SLCPs) gain greater attention as prominent contributors

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and diffuse way in which SLCP regulation unfolds in current international law.43

 

Reductions in short lived climate pollutants are the only way to achieve immediate positive responses to climate change because of their GHG intensity – provides a bridge for CO2 regulation that solves feedback loops

Howarth, PhD, Director, Agriculture, Energy & Environment Program, Chair, International SCOPE Biofuels Program, David R. Atkinson Professor of Ecology and Environmental Biology – Cornell, ‘14

(Robert, “A bridge to nowhere: methane emissions and the greenhouse gas footprint of natural gas,” Energy Science & Engineering, Volume 2, Issue 2, June, *language modified)

The most recent synthesis report from the IPCC in 2013 on the physical science basis

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per unit of heat generated when considered at this 20-year timescale.

 

That has immediate ecological and social consequences – recognizing the multifaceted nature of climate risk in litigation is key

Abate, Professor of Law, Florida A & M University College of Law, ‘10

(Randall, “Public Nuisance Suits for the Climate Justice Movement: The Right Thing and the Right Time,” Washington Law Review, Vol. 85)

  1. The Nature and Scope of Climate Change Impacts on Vulnerable Populations Devastating climate

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Kivalina-like scenarios are an important step, but only the beginning.

 

Arctic tipping points are an existential risk – there is no one exact threshold, but recognition of worst-case scenario risks in policymaking is key

Dietz et al., PhD degrees from LSE, specialising in environmental policy and economics, Co-Director of the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment – LSE, ‘17

(Simon, Oliver Bettis Institute and Faculty of Actuaries’ Resource and Environment Board, and Nick Silver, Visiting Fellow, Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change and the Environment at LSE, “The risk of climate ruin,” Climatic Change, January, Volume 140, Issue 2, pp 109–118)

Climate thresholds and tipping elements

In climate research, concern about the prospect of

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focus on peak warming, rather than transient or equilibrium warming per se).

 

Arctic ice melt destabilizes the entire climate and risks the next ice age

Wadhams 9/26

PETER WADHAMS, Peter Wadhams, professor emeritus of ocean physics at Cambridge University, is a sea ice specialist with 46 years of research on sea ice and ocean processes in the Arctic and Antarctic. In more than 50 expeditions to both polar regions, he has worked from ice camps, icebreakers, and aircraft. He also has traveled six times on Royal Navy submarines under frozen north polar seas to conduct research. His new book is A Farewell to Ice: A Report from the Arctic., SEPTEMBER 26, 2016, The Global Impacts of Rapidly Disappearing Arctic Sea Ice, http://e360.yale.edu/features/as_arctic_ocean_ice_disappears_global_climate_impacts_intensify_wadhams

The top of the world is turning from white to blue in summer as the

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no effect in the face of, say, runaway emissions of methane.

 

Requiring an updated assessment of downstream emissions is key to responsiveness and dynamic governance

Michael Burger, Executive Director of the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law, and a Research Scholar and Lecturer-in-Law at Columbia Law School, and Jessica Wentz is an Associate Director and Fellow at the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law, 2016, Downstream and Upstream Greenhouse Gas Emissions: The Proper Scope of NEPA Review, March, Working Paper, Sabin Center for Climate Change Law

The United States has been slow to respond to this imperative.4 In the

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within the scope of indirect impacts that must be evaluated under NEPA.14

 

This methodological reorientation is uniquely relevant for the arctic – challenges dominant modes of legal thought

Khan, Doctorate in Law with specialization in International Environmental Law, Postdoctoral Researcher at the Centre for Climate Change, Energy and Environmental Law based at the University of Eastern Finland, March, ‘17

(Sabaa, “The Global Commons through a Regional Lens: The Arctic Council on Short-Lived Climate Pollutants,” Transnational Environmental Law, Volume 6, Issue 1, pp. 131-152)

The institutional composition of the Arctic Council and its soft law approach allow it to

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negotiate their modus vivendi in the hope of a more inclusive Arctic future.

 

The aff’s focus on transnational legal challenges is essential on the cusp of Trump environmental policy – flexible legal mechanisms within a polycentric system are able to prevent federal backsliding

Etty et al., Researcher and Lecturer in transnational environmental law and biotechnology regulation at the VU University Amsterdam, Institute for Environmental Studies, department of Environmental Policy Analysis, ‘2/16/17

(Thijs, Veerle Heyvaert, PhD, Associate Professor at LSE in environmental and European law, Cinnamon Carlarne Associate Dean for Faculty; Professor of Law, Ohio State University, Daniel Farber Sho Sato Professor of Law, Co-Faculty Director, Center for Law, Energy & the Environment, UC Berkeley, Bruce Huber Associate Professor of Law, Robert & Marion Short Scholar, University of Notre Dame, and Jolene Lin, Associate Professor of law at the University of Hong Kong, LL.B., London School of Economics, LL.M., New York University School of Law, Advocate and Solicitor in the Supreme Court of Singapore, “Transnational Environmental Law on the Threshold of the Trump Era,” Transnational Environmental Law, Volume 6, Issue 1, pg. 1-10)

2017 marks the first year in which TEL will increase its publication from two to

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term. However, we need to be prepared for less optimistic scenarios.

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