Sep 08 2010

Environmental Law Center Looks at Sustainability Record of Pennsylvania Candidates for Governor and U.S. Senate

GreenElectionsPromo235“The motto for the Environmental Law Center is Law for Sustainability,” says Distinguished Professor John C. Dernbach, adding, “Governors and Senators make a lot of decisions that create and implement law.” With that in mind, Professor Dernbach has worked closely with some of his students to provide information on the Environmental Law Center’s blog about the positions that the candidates for Governor and U.S. Senator in Pennsylvania hold on sustainability issues.

“We’ve framed the issue in terms of sustainability, which is a broader term than environmental regulation,” says Professor Dernbach. Calling the effort a public service, he noted, “Sustainable development would make Pennsylvania more livable, healthy, secure, and prosperous. Policies that promote sustainability would help grow our economy, create jobs, improve quality of life in our communities, make us healthier, reduce risks to our national security, and improve the lives of the poorest among us.” The Sustainable Pennsylvania – Election 2010 pages will provide a detailed side-by-side comparison of the sustainability positions of gubernatorial candidates Tom Corbett (R) and Dan Onorato (D). The positions of Senate candidates Joe Sestak (D) and Pat Toomey (R) are similarly compared. Categories include Green Jobs & Green Business, Investment in Environmental Infrastructure, Clean Energy, and Sustainable Communities.

Despite the importance of addressing sustainability, the Environmental Law Center’s Sustainable Pennsylvania – Election 2010 page appears to be one of the only efforts of its kind in the nation to focus on sustainability issues.

“Green business and jobs cannot be created by regulation alone. You need regulation to protect the environment and public health, but you also need tax incentives, infrastructure, and supportive laws to create green businesses and jobs,” Professor Dernbach said.

The students working on the project are all in their second year of law school–Daniel Minium (of Camp Hill, Pa.), Bret Wiest (of Fredericksburg, Pa.), and Matthew McDonnell (of Hatboro, Pa.). “They’re learning a lot and doing very good work,” Dernbach said.

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