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Loyola University New Orleans Hosts Environmental Roundtable Discussion on Impacts of Recent U.S. Supreme Court Decision on the Environmental Species Act

Loyola press release - October 22, 2018

Loyola University New Orleans hosts on Thursday a panel discussion on the recent U.S. Supreme Court case related to the Dusky Gopher Frog. An endangered species, the dusky gopher frog is native to the forested wetlands of the southern coastal United States, with a historical range from the Mississippi River in Louisiana to the Mobile River delta in Alabama.

“This case, while similar in many ways to typical court cases related to the ESA, has aspects of a ‘takings’ case,” said Dr. Craig S. Hood, Director of the Environment Program at Loyola. “This was the very first case the current U.S. Supreme Court has argued this session and the decision could have broader implications on the future of the ESA. Loyola scholars will both discuss the issues and bring forward knowledge on this species and potential impacts for our region.”

“Dusky Gopher Frogs and the ESA in Balance: A Panel Discussion of Loyola Scholars on the Fate of the Environmental Species Act,” will be held from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 25, 2018, in Monroe Hall, Room 610 on Loyola’s main campus, 6363 St. Charles Ave., New Orleans, La. 70118.

Decisions and discussion in the recent case, Weyerhaeuser Company v. United States Fish and Wildlife Service, have impacts on the Endangered Species Act and several other areas of Environmental Regulation and Law, for example, the Clean Water Act, Loyola professors said. Court cases related to the Endangered Species Act court cases often involve multiple state and federal laws and regulations.

The case was argued Oct. 1, the first day of the current SCOTUS session. Loyola University New Orleans scholars from the College of Law, Environment Program, and Department of Biological Sciences will address issues related to the case, as well as potential far-reaching impacts.

Loyola panelists include:

Dr. Craig S. Hood, E. Letitia Beard Distinguished Professor of Biological Sciences and Director of the Environment Program at Loyola, who will moderate the discussion.

Dr. Robert A. “Bob” Thomas, Loyola Professor and Distinguished Chair of Environmental Communications (School of Mass Communication), a professional Herpetologist who has worked on reptiles and amphibians of Louisiana, including the Louisiana Amphibian Monitoring Program and the Dusky Gopher Frog.

Dr. David A. White, Loyola Professor of Biological Sciences and Environment Program, a wetlands ecologist who has taught Ecological Science courses at Loyola over a period of three decades. He has worked on wetland delineations and ecological impacts of conserving/restoring species and ecosystems.

Associate Professor Law Karen Sokol, an environmental law expert who joined the Loyola University New Orleans College of Law faculty in 2009. Her teaching and research interests include environmental law, torts, products liability, administrative law, and philosophy of law. Her scholarship focuses on climate change law and policy and on the potential for forging more robust environmental protections by incorporating Eastern philosophy into Western legal theory and policy.

Click here for the SCOTUS Blog Summary.

Click here for the SCOTUS Case Summary.

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