First look at Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan’s green cred
Update: Supreme Court nominee Elena Kagan hasn’t said much about her environmental views, but she has a solid record of supporting climate law. Here’s the full story on her green cred.
Courtesy Doc Searls via Wikimedia Commons
As Obama’s solicitor general, Kagan represents the U.S. government before the Supreme Court. But because it’s her job to represent the government’s view, the work doesn’t reveal much about her judicial philosophy or environmental priorities. And she’s never served as a federal appeals judge (unlike the other nominees and all current justices), or any kind of judge, so she has no judicial record to assess.
One indicator of her philosophy is her six years as dean of Harvard Law School, from 2003 to 2009, where she helped found the Environmental Law Program. Kagan lured the highly regarded environmental policy and regulation scholar Jody Freeman from UCLA to lead the program, one of the most prominent hires of her Harvard tenure. Kagan also launched an Environmental Law and Policy Clinic that puts students to work on current cases.
“For many years, Harvard was not known for a primary expertise in the environmental jurisprudence, and that changed under Dean Kagan’s watch,” environmental law professor Jim Rossi told Greenwire last year.