Environmental Law Program

ELP Certificate & Courses

The Environmental Law Program offers a variety of gateway and advanced courses in environmental law, land use, and related subjects. Students interested in a focused course of study can earn a certificate in environmental law.

Certificate Requirements

Click here to download the complete Environmental Law Certificate Checklist and Approval Form

Certificate candidates must complete the following substantive and procedural requirements before being awarded a Certificate upon graduation. Please consult with the ELP Director and faculty about your certificate course planning during your 2L and 3L years, and submit the completed certificate form to the ELP Director no later than 30 days before graduation. For petitions, attach any relevant documentation.

(1) CORE COURSES: Successful completion of both:

-Administrative Law (LAW 561)
-Environmental Law (LWEV 582)

(2) ADVANCED COURSES: Successful completion of a minimum of three of the following:

-Conservation Transactions (LWEV 504)
-Climate Change Law and Policy (LWEV 530)
-Domestic Ocean and Coastal Law (LWEV 592)
-Environmental Compliance & Regulated Industries (LWEV 512)
-Environmental Law Clinic (LAW 590E)
-Environmental Litigation Seminar (LWEV529)
-Hazardous Waste Law (LWEV 540)
-International Ocean Law (LWEV 593)
-International Environmental Law (LWEV 528)
-Land Use Management and Control (LAW 580)
-Legal Aspects of Water Resources and Control (LWEV 588)
-Wildlife & Natural Resources Law (LWEV 503)
-Two 1-credit or one 2-credit Topics in Environmental Law (LWEV 527)

_____ Topics:  _______________________ Instructor:  _____________

_____ Topics:  _______________________ Instructor:  _____________

(3) SUPPLEMENTAL COURSES: Successful completion of two of the following:

-Business Associations (LAW 531)
-Constitutional Law II (LAW 534)
-Federal Courts (LAW 571)
-Historic Preservation Law (LAW503)
-International Law (LWPA 585)
-Legislative and Statutory Interpretation (LAW 525)
-Native Hawaiian Rights (LWPA 581)
-Negotiation & Alternative Dispute Resolution (LAW 508)
-State and Local Government Law (LAW 574)

(4) ACADEMIC EXCELLENCE: Maintenance of a cumulative grade point average of 3.0 or better in the above-listed Certificate Program courses (and in Second-Year Seminar, if selected for Tier 5); courses may not be taken on a credit/no credit basis unless offered only as a C/NC course.

(5) INTENSIVE AND EXTRA-CURRICULAR OPTIONS: Successful completion of one of the following:

-Two credit-hour approved externship (e.g. Earthjustice, Environmental Division of the State Attorney General’s Office).

-Two credit-hour directed study that produces a paper on an approved topic under the supervision of one of the environmental law faculty.

-Second-Year Seminar paper or paper accepted for publication in Hawai‘i Law Review or APLPJ, on an approved environmental law topic.

-A team member of the Law School’s Environmental Law Moot Court Team or the International Environmental Law Moot Court Team.

-Other courses and graduate courses outside the Law School and from other ABA-approved schools, including study abroad, may be approved by the ELP Director to substitute for Certificate requirements. Students seeking approval of non-listed courses must petition the Director in writing no later than 60 days prior to graduation, including a justification for the request, the syllabus for the course, and the student’s grade in the course. ELP may offer occasional courses not listed above that may be pre-approved for Certificate requirements (ask the Director or instructor). Students seeking pre-approval for topics for Directed Study and SYS should consult with the Director before commencement of the course/project; students seeking approval of topics after completion of the course/project take the risk that the topic may not qualify for the Certificate.

Certificate approval must be obtained from the ELP Director no later than 30 days before graduation. The certificate will then forwarded by ELP to the Registrar for final review of the student’s academic record in the courses listed above.

Course Descriptions

LWEV 503 Wildlife and Natural Resources LawSeminar covering federal and Hawai‘i laws that govern the management of wildlife resources, with a particular focus on wildlife conflicts arising in Hawai‘i.

LWEV 512 Environmental Compliance and Regulated Industries. In-depth study of the federal and state environmental laws that impact modern businesses and industries, and exploration of the compliance issues that arise under the statutes, regulations, and case law.

LWEV 527 Topics in Environmental Law. Focuses on specific topic areas that will vary from year to year, depending upon current environmental issues in Hawai‘i, nationwide, and internationally.  Topics have included advanced natural resources, military, comparative takings, and toxic waste issues.

LWEV 528 International Environmental LawStudy of the international regulation of activities and processes used to prevent environmental degradation and to preserve resources of environmental value.

LWEV 529 Environmental Litigation SeminarSeminar on the techniques, law, and strategy involved in federal and state court environmental litigation.

LWEV 540 Hazardous Waste Law. Examination of major federal statutes, regulatory and case law, and Hawai‘i counterparts.  Policies behind hazardous waste laws and their impact on individuals, community, and businesses.

LWEV 582 Environmental Law. Basic policy questions and problems concerning  environmental law. Examination of federal and Hawaiian statutes. Focus on environmental problems of Hawai‘i.

LWEV 588 Legal Aspects of Water Resources and ControlLegal aspects of water and water rights with focus on Hawai‘i.

LAW 590EEnvironmental Law ClinicIn this clinic, students hone their legal skills, including analyzing legal issues, developing and implementing case strategy, collaborating with “clients,” refining factual and legal research, and writing persuasively.  Initial classes review state and/or federal laws relating to natural and cultural resource protection.  Students work in teams to assist clients, including helping attorneys who represent grassroots community groups and Native Hawaiians.  The primary work product is legal memoranda, although students may also prepare pleadings, comment letters, or oral or written testimony.  The clinic often includes client interaction and site visits to affected resources and communities and the students’ presentation of their final product to a client and/or their counsel. Please click here for information on our past Environmental Law Clinics.

LWEV 592 Domestic Ocean and Coastal Law. Examination of the history of U.S. and Hawai‘i sea-use law; comprehensive coverage of modern issues concerning the use of the sea including special Hawaiian problems.

LWEV 593 International Ocean LawExamination of the history of international sea-use law, including comprehensive coverage of modern problems and issues concerning the use of the sea among nations.