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Kubasek and Silverman's Environmental Law, Fifth Edition, explains the legal system and process in general, discusses specific environmental laws, and presents the scientific background necessary to understand each law. As always, Kubasek and Silverman's emphasis remains on making ethical decisions regarding our environment. Highlights of the new edition include:
When I began teaching environmental law to undergraduates in 1982, there were very few such courses offered outside of law schools. There were even fewer resources available for teaching courses to anyone other than law students. My first semester, I taught the course using one of the two available law school texts.
The next year I began putting together my own materials, materials that over the next few years evolved into an environmental law "text" designed especially for nonlaw students that I made available to my students through a copy service. To improve the quality of the materials before attempting to publish them, I asked my colleague Dr. Gary Silverman, the director of our university's Environmental Health Program, to write the chapters on water quality control and management of waste and hazardous releases, areas in which he has special expertise.
The result was the first edition of Environmental Law, a book designed to introduce those without any legal or special scientific training to the system through which our nation attempts to preserve the environment. Although this book was written for college students at either the undergraduate or master's level, I had hoped that it would also be useful to anyone interested in learning about our system of environmental law, and that it would be a helpful reference for anyone in business who is attempting to negotiate the morass of environmental regulations that affect businesses today. From the comments that I have received from users of the book, it is clear that in some sense, the book is meeting these goals. Readers of the book range from graduate and undergraduate students to businesspersons and ordinarycitizens interested in environmental law.
Reflecting the fact that background knowledge is often important for understanding specific areas, this book provides two key types of background necessary for understanding environmental law. First, the initial chapters explain how our legal system functions in general. Second, the initial portions of the latter chapters provide the basic scientific knowledge necessary for understanding environmental law. Thus, the reader may gain a fundamental understanding of not only what the laws are but also why they are needed.
Several people helped to make the first edition of this book, and consequently this fifth edition, a reality, and I would like to thank them for their contributions. Thorough and insightful reviews were provided by the following professors:
Their reviews led to vast improvements of the final version of the first edition of this book. In fact, it is only because of a suggestion of one of these reviewers that a very important chapter of this book was written, the chapter on energy policy and natural resource protection.
When changes in environmental law necessitated the first revision of Environmental Law, helpful reviews were provided by Paula C. Murray, of the University of Texas, and Eric Oates, of the Wharton School. Numerous changes were made in response to their comments.
Reviewers were once again helpful when it came to the third edition of this text. I would like to once again thank the following professors for their helpful insights:
Perhaps the most significant contributor to the third edition was Carrie Williamson, a former environmental law student and my research assistant at the time of the third revision. Having used the book in class, she was able to point out places where it was unclear and make suggestions for its improvement. She also spent numerous hours doing research to ensure that the edition contained the most up-to-date figures possible at the time of publication. Finally, she contributed to the improvement of the book by drafting essays featured in the new "Thinking Critically About Issues in Environmental Law" section. Her assistance on this revision was invaluable.
With the fourth edition of this text, the former Chapter 9, Natural Resources and Energy Policy, was divided into two separate chapters to allow expansion of both of these areas. Many users were saying that they would like to devote more time to natural resource issues, and the energy crisis of 2001 certainly stimulated growing interest in energy issues. Many questions, such as whether we should build more nuclear power plants, were considered non-issues in the 1990s, but were being hotly debated as the fourth edition went into press, and continued to be on the front burner as the fifth edition was being written.
Special credit for the improvements in the fourth edition go to my former assistant, Anne Hardenbergh. A former student in my environmental law class, she used her experience with the book as a student to suggest areas of improvement. She also helped to upgrade the quality and number of web sites at the end of each chapter. Many users of the book sent in suggestions that helped improve the fourth edition, but three stand out for their unusually valuable contributions: Thomas Ostrom, Mike Eckhoff, and Lester Lindley.
As with previous editions, many of the improvements in this fifth edition came from suggestions of users and readers of the text, and while I may not remember to give credit to each individual in the text, their contributions are .valuable. A number of reviewers made helpful suggestions for this edition, and I would like to thank each of them:
I also want to thank my research assistant, and future lawyer, Alex Frondorf, for the extensive research he did for the fifth edition, as well as all of the individuals at Pearson Prentice Hall who helped to pull this edition together: Alana Bradley, my editor; Jane Avery, her assistant; Denise Culhane, production editor; and Colleen Franciscus, project manager. And finally, the students and professors who used the first four editions of this book and offered helpful criticisms, cannot be omitted. Although they are too numerous to list by name, their contributions were invaluable.
The fourth revision of this book was finished at a time when it was starting to look as if may of the strides that we had made in environmental law were going to be reduced. Headlines such as "Bush Declares War on the Environment" were appearing a month before this edition was turned in. However, just before the manuscript was finished, the administration seemed to be recognizing that it was not going to be able to modify every environmental protection without protest, and so it had backed off a little in terms of retracting some of the orders that had been issued near the end of President Clinton's term that had been designed to protect the environment. At that time, I wrote in the preface that "I can only hope that some of the dire predictions of some commentators turn out to be incorrect, and that the first decade of the new millennium does not turn out to be a decade of devolution of environmental protection."
Unfortunately, those hopes were not realized, as the second President Bush has turned out to be a much greater foe of the environment than most had predicted. His administration was given an "F" on the League of Conservation Voter's 2003 Report Card for performance on environmental issues. In conflicts between protecting the environment or protecting the timber, mining, and oil industries, the Bush Administration clearly favors the latter over the former. Just before this edition went to press, a group of 60 influential scientists, including 20 Nobel laureates, issued a statement that the Bush administration has deliberately and systematically distorted scientific fact in the service of policy goals on the environment, health, biomedical research and nuclear weaponry at home and abroad. Bush opened only three new national parks during his first term in office, fewer than any other president since 1901; created no new national monuments; set aside for preservation under the Wilderness Act only 500,000 acres, fewer than any other president since the act's passage; and named only 29 new species to the Endangered Species list, with all but four of those added under court order. Under these circumstances, as you might imagine, much of the revision of this edition consisted of explaining how our environmental protections have been reduced by the Bush administration.
In finishing the fifth edition of this book, I realize that in spite of the conscientious review of all stages of the book's production by many people, it is almost inevitable that mistakes have crept in, for which I accept responsibility. I would therefore appreciate readers' corrections and comments as to how future editions may better achieve the goals this book is designed to attain. Please send your comments, criticisms, corrections, or suggestions to me at the Department of Legal Studies, Bowling Green State University, Bowling Green, Ohio 43403. Or e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Nancy K. Kubasek
|Pt. I||An introduction to the law||1|
|Ch. 1||The American legal system : the source of environmental law||3|
|Ch. 2||The litigation process and other tools for resolving environmental disputes||50|
|Ch. 3||Administrative law and its impact on the environment||88|
|Pt. II||The environmental laws||125|
|Ch. 4||An introduction to environmental law and policy||127|
|Ch. 5||Air-quality control||165|
|Ch. 6||Water-quality control||211|
|Ch. 7||Controlling toxic substances||252|
|Ch. 8||Waste management and hazardous releases||285|
|Ch. 10||Natural resources||369|
|Ch. 11||International environmental law||402|