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Health Law and Policy Commons

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Columbia Law School

2003

Environmental Law

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Full-Text Articles in Health Law and Policy

Disasters First: Rethinking Environmental Law After September 11, Michael B. Gerrard Jan 2003

Disasters First: Rethinking Environmental Law After September 11, Michael B. Gerrard

Faculty Scholarship

Many environmental statutes were enacted, or at least spurred along, in direct response to disasters. The Federal Water Pollution Control Act of 1972 followed from the Santa Barbara Oil Spill; the Emergency Planning and Community Right-to-Know Act (EPCRA) resulted from the chemical gas disaster in Bhopal, India; the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA) was sparked by the Love Canal incident; and the Oil Pollution Acte was a reaction to the Exxon Valdez oil spill.

The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 have led to the Homeland Security Act and to several other enactments. The collapse of the ...