Our planet’s ecosystem has reached a crucial moment. The world is experiencing unprecedented industrial and urban growth accompanied by increasing threats to the environment and public health. The last few decades of the 20th century were warmer than any comparable period in the previous 400 years with multiple lines of evidence indicating that climatic warming is occurring in response to human activities. Habitat destruction across the globe continues to threaten the world’s biodiversity. Vehicle and industrial emissions are creating severe air pollution problems in many countries.
Despite these alarming trends, there is hope for progress. The 2007 Ward Kershaw Environmental Law Symposium will assemble environmental and public health clinicians and top public interest lawyers from around the world to initiate a dialogue about the opportunities clinical legal education provides to protect public health and the environment, equipping lawyers worldwide with the tools to effect change in nations that fail to enforce existing environmental laws or assess penalties that deter violators.
Clinical legal education is growing rapidly around the world, creating an important vehicle for delivering global responses to environmental and public health problems that cross national borders. The conference will spur that growth, providing a forum for international cooperation and the exchange of ideas that will lead to dramatic legal and policy transformations around the world.
The Ward, Kershaw Environmental Law Symposium
The Ward, Kershaw Environmental Law Symposium was established by a gift to the University of Maryland’s Environmental Law Program from the Baltimore law firm of Ward, Kershaw LLP. The law firm, which was founded in 1984, specializes in complex civil litigation, including class actions and environmental litigation.