Florida State / College of Law / Academic & International Programs / Environmental, Energy and Land Use Law / Environmental & Land Use Faculty

Shi-Ling Hsu
Larson Professor

Cost-Benefit Analysis in Environmental Law, Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Climate Change: Science, Policy & Law, Natural Resources, Property


“Environmental law has gotten a little too obsessed with legal outcomes, and not environmental outcomes. I got into environmental law because I care about the future that we bequeath to future generations, and am dissatisfied with what we seem to be leaving them. Climate change is a perfect example of what is wrong with environmental law. A fixation on what can be accomplished by lawyers with existing legal frameworks has left us with nothing – no progress to speak of in the twenty years since the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change was signed.

“Environmental lawyers need to come to terms with the fact that they do not have all the answers. Environmental problems, and especially the problem of climate change, will require people working across disciplinary boundaries. I have made it part of my research and teaching agenda to embrace, and not just tolerate, different forms of training and different viewpoints. Now more than ever, interdisciplinarity is needed.”

More information about Professor Shi-Ling Hsu.

David L. Markell
Steven M. Goldstein Professor and Associate Dean for Environmental Programs

Administrative Law, Climate Change Policy & Strategies, Environmental Law, Legislation & Regulation


“In many ways our world of environmental law is at a crossroads. We are reexamining underlying goals, reassessing how best to use tools available to
accomplish our goals, and reconsidering the roles that various government and non-governmental actors should play in environmental governance. Much of my recent and ongoing scholarship has focused on one or more of these three critical dimensions. For example, my research has focused on the role sustainable development should play in environmental policy; how we should use various tools, such as enforcement, to accomplish environmental objectives; and opportunities citizens should have to influence environmental policy.

“I have also worked with government officials and others to try to improve our
environmental policies. My service with EPA’s Advisory Committee for the
NAFTA Environmental Commission in particular has given me the chance to
work with officials at all levels of government and with NGOs to address
pressing challenges domestically and throughout North America.”

More information about Professor Dave Markell.

Hannah Wiseman
Assistant Professor

Emerging Issues in Energy Law, Energy Law, Environmental Law, Land Use Regulation


“My scholarship focuses on the intersection of land
use, energy and environmental law. It explores
unique regulatory regimes for the siting of renewable energy infrastructure, effective methods of regulating shale gas development and creative governance systems to preserve local community character, including public and private systems.

“In a world of increasingly scarce resources and close living quarters, we need to find better ways to plan for energy alternatives, to adapt regulations to rapidly changing technologies and to control the externalities of our daily land use decisions. I hope to provide new perspectives on effective governance in order to encourage regulatory innovation in these areas.”

More information about Professor Hannah Wiseman.

Donna R. Christie
Elizabeth C. and Clyde W. Atkinson Professor

Coastal and Ocean Law, International Environmental Law, Land Use Regulation, Law of the Sea, Natural Resources Law


“The oceans and coasts are in the forefront of
environmental law today. From climate change and
sea level rise, to energy development and oil spills,
to development of a national ocean policy implemented through regional coastal and marine
spacial planning, the area is the focus of developing
law and policy.

“Florida’s beaches continue to provide a battleground for the courts. Beach restoration and public access are key to Florida’s economy, but issues concerning coastal boundaries, riparian rights of upland owners and customary right of the public to use the state’s beaches continue to create controversy.”

More information about Professor Donna Christie.

Mark B. Seidenfeld
Patricia A. Dore Professor

of Administrative Law and Associate Dean for Research

Administrative Law, Energy Law, Legislation & Regulation


“Probably the most interesting recent development in administrative law is the extent to which the U.S.
president can assert authority to take action that
has not been left to him by Congress and the extent to which Congress can restrict the president from doing so. Pragmatically, the question is: To what extent can the president tell the head of an agency, who Congress has authorized to act, ‘I want you to take this particular regulatory action’? I am currently considering this question from the perspective of a theory of the administrative state that is consistent with our notions of democracy and the expectation that agencies act deliberatively.”

More information about Professor Mark Seidenfeld.

Garrick Pursley
Assistamt Professor

Constitutional Law II, Federal Jurisdiction, Legislation & Regulation


“As our problems grow more complex, they demand increasingly complex responses. For environmental issues, we have embraced collaborative arrangements in which the federal, state and sometimes local governments share policymaking responsibilities to divide up the workload, leverage their varying areas of expertise, and better address local preferences. Our energy crisis, of course, also demands innovative action, though the nature of the optimal program is still being worked out. More and more, our constitutional system is being challenged to adapt; structural flexibility is essential for dealing with unforeseeable issues as they arise. But the rigid constitutional views that are currently ascendant cast doubt on the legitimacy of these kinds of innovations and may derail needed reform.

“The question of the Constitution’s relative rigidity or flexibility is an old one, but recent advances in constitutional theory and other fields help to move the debate forward. If we view the Constitution as providing a few simple, commonsense structural requirements rather than a long list of detailed and unalterable structural mandates, then it may be legitimate to consider
pragmatic factors—like effectiveness and efficiency—as we assess what the Constitution permits. This makes for both greater structural adaptability and more coherent and predictable constitutional limitations on regulatory experiments. One goal of my current work is to establish that this simpler view of the Constitution is the better one, and on that basis to defend innovative
environmental and energy policy initiatives, among other things, against constitutional challenge.”

More information about Professor Garrick Pursley.