Agriculture Law & the Environment

Agriculture Law & the Environment

Course Number: 920, CRN 73838
Farming has dramatic environmental impacts including air and water pollution, soil erosion, and loss of biodiversity. Unlike other industries with similar impacts, it is subject to very little federal or state regulation. This seminar will examine the legal framework governing agriculture, focusing on both the features that have incentivized or allowed poor environmental practices and the limited mechanisms to reign in those practices. Topics to be covered include the Farm Bill (including commodity payments, conservation programs, and research funding), agricultural exemptions in major environmental laws (including the Clean Air Act and the Clean Water Act), information regulation (pesticide labeling, organics, GMOs, other private labeling), water quality trading schemes, and regulation of discharges from concentrated animal feeding operations. The seminar will also explore currently developing potential solutions to the environmental problem, the advantages, disadvantages, and challenges of each solution, focusing in particular on equity issues (access and affordability).
Agriculture Law, Environmental Law