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Pace Law Library has served the Environmental Law Program since its inception in the late 1970s. As an early pioneer in building a collection of environmental law materials, Pace's collection was featured in a published bibliography in 1984. Following the approval of the LL.M. program in 1986 and the S.J.D. program in 1995, the Library made a special effort to increase and enrich its environmental law collection and to develop staff specialized in environmental research and legal instruction.
Environmental Law Librarian Taryn Rucinski currently serves as liaison to the Environmental Law Program. PEN-e, the Law Library's environmental law blog, provides links to the latest news and resources in the areas of environmental law and public utilities law, ecology and related areas. We have a number of research guides devoted to environmental law as well.
The Library's core environmental collection is made up of comprehensive treatises written by our own faculty and other practitioners and scholars. These provide students with complete analyses of diverse areas of environmental law on state, federal, and international levels. However, because environmental law is constantly changing, students also have access to our many current loose-leaf services and databases, which facilitate research by bringing together important legal documents on environmental issues, and to our numerous environmental law reviews, journals and newsletters that discuss and analyze current changes in laws and regulations.
Pace has always prided itself on being at the forefront of the advances in technology that have produced so many changes in the methods of delivering legal information. Documents in the area of environmental law are available in a variety of electronic formats. Pace Law Library has a CD-ROM collection that includes both commercial and governmental environmental law databases. In addition, the Library subscribes to a number of commercial databases devoted to environmental law and related topics; many of these are available to students from home. Finally, all students have free access to Lexis, Westlaw, and Bloomberg Law, which provide access to federal, state, and international environmental law documents. Pace provides training for all of its J.D., LL.M., and S.J.D. candidates in print and online legal research techniques.
Because environmental law research requires access to many non-law materials in science, medicine, engineering, and other disciplines, Pace Law students have access not only to Pace University’s main library collections, including interdisciplinary databases, but, through a consortium agreement, to all the academic library collections in Westchester County and virtually all academic law libraries in the New York metropolitan area. Hard-to-get materials are generally available through interlibrary loan.
A staff of more than twenty professional librarians and paraprofessional library assistants maintains the Law Library. A core staff of six full-time and two part-time reference librarians is available to help students deal with thorny research problems, train them on electronic research tools, and assist with research in environmental databases. Many of our librarians have both law degrees and library degrees. These librarians provide hands on training to J.D. candidates, particularly the staff and editors of the Pace Environmental Law Review, give lectures on environmental research as part of the orientation for new LL.M. students, and are also available for individual research instruction.