ABA ROLI Hosts Environmental Law Expert in Jordan

December 2009  

In December, the ABA Rule of Law Initiative (ABA ROLI) office in Jordan hosted professor Robert Percival, director of the University of Maryland School of Law’s environmental law program, for a week-long visit to launch environmental law course development for Jordanian law faculties. 

During his visit, Percival met with various environmental law practitioners, judges and officials, including the ministers of environment and justice. He gave global environmental law presentations to students at two Jordanian universities and held a roundtable for lawyers and judges. Law professors embraced the idea of building student and faculty awareness on environmental law issues and agreed to hold Jordan’s 2010 moot court competition on an environmental law case. These activities are part of ABA ROLI’s legal education reform initiatives, which include curriculum development, faculty training and promoting skills-building activities for students.

Environmental law is new to Jordan, with the first environmental code promulgated in 1995; however, the Ministry of Environment has increasingly become more active in enforcing environmental laws and the method of enforcement has become more sophisticated. In November alone, the ministry andrelated authorities issued some 4,000 regulations and shut down more than 40 businesses for violating environmental regulations.

Given the increasing interest in environmental issues in the country, ABAROLI is developing a survey course on environmental law tailored specifically to Jordan. Several Jordanian law schools have expressed an interest in adding ABA ROLI’s course to their curriculum. In addition to integrating Percival’s expertise, ABA ROLI has engaged the help of local enforcement officials, attorneys and judges.

To learn more about our work in Jordan, please contact the ABA Rule of Law Initiative at <rol@staff.abanet.org>.

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