(Audio): Read the Dirt’s Coverage of the 2013 Public Interest Environmental Law Conference
by: Simon Davis-Cohen Posted on: June 08, 2013
Editor’s Note: Read the Dirt was in attendance at this spring’s Public Interest Environmental Law Conference in Eugene, Oregon. We recorded three speeches, and spoke with select presenters.
-Thomas Linzey, Executive Director of the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund, gives a keynote address. In front of a crowd of lawyers, Linzey points out that, “When you don’t directly challenge the law you are validating it.”
-After Linzey’s speech he and Kai Huschke, the Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund’s Oregon, Washington and Hawaii Organizer gave a follow up presentation. They speak to how local rights-based ordinances can function as “organizing vehicles.”
-First Nations leader and lawyer, Caleb Behn, speaks on indigenous law, how hydrofracking fits within his people’s mythology, the unprecedented acceleration of oil and gas extraction on his people’s land, and the potential water wars facing his region. [Behn refers to some images during his speech.]
-Noni Austin of the University of Oregon speaks briefly (3:16) on the emerging global trend of incorporating rights-based language into environmental law.
-Richard York, Professor of Sociology at the University of Oregon quickly (in 1:25) provides his arguments debunking the myth that the production of renewables and increased energy efficiency reduce fossil fuel consumption.
-Thuli Brilliance Makam, Swaziland’s first environmental and public interest lawyer, Executive Director of Friends of the Earth Swaziland, Founder of Legal Assistance Center, speaks to the mining onslaught threatening her country, how conventional law keeps us busy and how communities in her country are being turned into spectators. “Local communities who coexist with the resources are treated as a nuisance at best, and worst they are treated as waste that has to be disposed of in a decent way.”
-The Corvallis Raging Grannies are members of the emerging Raging Granny network. They put new lyrics to old time folk songs.
All recordings are original Read the Dirt content.
Photo: Simon Davis-Cohen
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