Vanderbilt Law School Background Image

Environmental Law & Policy Annual Review

The Environmental Law and Policy Annual Review (ELPAR) is a law class that produces a joint publication between Vanderbilt Law School and the Environmental Law Institute (ELI)—an internationally recognized, non-partisan research and education center based in Washington, D.C. working to strengthen environmental protection by improving law and governance worldwide.


2022 ELPAR Nashville Symposium

The annual ELPAR symposium was held on February 28, 2022, and featured the article “Turning Participation Into Power: A Water Justice Case Study” by University of Baltimore Law School’s Professor Jamie Lee. Learn more here.


Each year, Vanderbilt Law School students work with their course instructors, an expert advisory board and senior staff from ELI to identify some of the best environmental law and policy proposals in the legal academic literature. The result is a one issue, student-edited volume that includes condensed versions of the selected articles, along with commentaries from leading practitioners and policymakers. The selected articles and commentaries are published in the August Issue of the Environmental Law Reporter (ELR) and presented at annual conferences in Washington, D.C. and in Nashville, TN. ELPAR students participate in the conferences which are typically attended by representatives from businesses, state and federal government agencies, think tanks, trade associations and non-profit organizations.

ELPAR is designed to bring ideas from the academy to policymakers and practitioners, as well as recognize and incentivize scholars to write articles that include creative and feasible law and policy proposals. At the same time, ELPAR seeks to provide a first-rate educational experience to law students interested in environmental law and policy.


Learn More about ELPAR through Environmental Law Institute
Vibrant Environment Blog and
student-hosted ELPAR Podcast Series on ELI's People, Places, Planet Podcast

2021-2022 ELPAR top articles selected

  • David Adelman and Jori Reilly-Diakun, Environmental Citizen Suits and the Inequities of Races to the Top, 92 U. COLO. L. REV. 377; 
  • Jamie Lee, Turning Participation Into Power: A Water Justice Case Study, 28 GEO. MASON L. REV. 1003; 
  • Leo Strine, Kirby Smith, and Reilly Steel, Caremark and ESG, Perfect Together: A Practical Approach to Implementing an Integrated, Efficient, and Effective Caremark and EESG, 106 IOWA L. REV. 1885; and 
  • Shelley Welton, Rethinking Grid Governance for the Climate Change Era, 109 CALIF. L. REV. 209. 

In addition, two articles were selected for Honorable Mention: 

  • Victor Flatt, Holding Polluters Accountable in Times of Climate and COVID Risk: The Problems with "Emergency" Enforcement Waivers, 12 SAN DIEGO J. CLIMATE & ENERGY L. 1; and
  • Monte Mills and Martin Nie, Bridges to a New Era: A Report on the Past, Present, and Potential Future of Tribal Co-Management on Federal Public Lands, 44 PUB. LAND & RESOURCES L. REV. 49.

2022 ELPAR Conference

March 25, 2022

(More information, including a recording, are available here )

Condensed versions of these articles will be published in the August 2022 issue of the Environmental Law Reporter and will also be made available in August.