Course Information

Course Description: Environmental Clinic


Students in the Environmental Clinic work with non-governmental organizations and underserved communities throughout Texas to advocate for solutions to today’s pressing environmental problems, including environmental injustice and climate change. Students think creatively about how to use the law to protect and improve environmental quality and public health.

Students work in teams, under the supervision of clinic faculty, and should expect to spend approximately 12 hours per week working on clinic cases. Recent clinic projects have included:

  • Clean Air Act and Safe Drinking Water Act enforcement actions in federal court,
  • comments on Environmental Impact Statements,
  • permitting and rulemaking proceedings before courts and administrative agencies,
  • civil rights complaints, and
  • community environmental education and pollution monitoring.

The casework allows students to gain practical experience with factual investigation and analysis, community education, administrative research and advocacy before regulatory agencies, and legal drafting and litigation support. It also challenges students to think about the role of lawyers in working with communities and to recognize the strengths and weaknesses of current laws for addressing environmental problems.

In the weekly two-hour seminar students practice navigating environmental statutes and regulations and discuss environmental laws, environmental justice, the role of lawyers in social movements, climate change, and other environmental topics of interest to the class.

In addition to the seminar and casework, students gain practical, real-world knowledge and experiences by attending public regulatory agency hearings and meetings and visiting clients and industrial sites in person, when possible and appropriate.

The Clinic is open to students who have completed their first two semesters. There is no prerequisite for the clinic.

To apply for the Clinic, please submit the online application.

For additional information regarding the clinic, contact Clinic Director Kelly Haragan (kharagan@law.utexas.edu, 512-232-2654) or the Clinic Program Coordinator (512-232-2454).