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June 11, 2021

American Bar Association hosts two-day virtual climate change conference

CHICAGO, June 11, 2021 – Legal experts and decision makers from government, nonprofit organizations and the private sector will discuss climate change issues in a two-day virtual conference, “Climate Change in the West: Land, People, Markets, and Law,” on June 17-18, sponsored by the ABA Section of Environment, Energy and Resources.

Ann Becker, vice president of sustainability at the Arizona Public Service Company, will deliver the pre-recorded keynote address, available to attendees on-demand. Allison Herren Lee, a member of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, will deliver opening remarks during the Private Climate Governance panel at 12:30 p.m. June 18.

Four panel discussions include:

“Climate Resilience in the West” – In the Western United States, the effects of climate change are already readily apparent, and projected to grow into the future. Resilience to these effects, as experienced by both natural systems and the built environment is critical. This panel will explore three important challenges the West faces and how the law may promote resilience among these systems. Panelists will discuss wildfires and resiliency, as the West braces for another dangerous wildfire season while still recovering from record-breaking fires in Colorado, Oregon, California and other Western states in 2020.
12:30-2 p.m. EDT, June 17

“Environmental and Energy Justice” – Communities are not equally impacted by climate change or by mitigation strategies designed to reduce emissions. Climate justice efforts are aimed at addressing marginalized communities’ heightened vulnerability to the potentially devastating consequences of a changing climate. Panelists will address the intersection between environmental justice and climate change policy, tribal renewable energy and natural resource project development, tribal economic development, and the water-energy nexus; and the Biden administration’s efforts to tackle the climate crisis, to deliver environmental justice, and to address environmental review under the National Environmental Policy Act.
3-4 p.m. EDT, June 17

“Private Climate Governance” – Numerous stakeholders — consumers, shareholders, investors, state attorneys general, supply chain contractors and law students — are increasingly focused on corporate contributions and vulnerabilities to climate change and setting expectations for corporate governance of climate issues. This panel will highlight developments in voluntary and mandatory disclosure relating to climate change, consider the increasing role and responsibilities of lawyers advising clients in this space, and evaluate how transparency and, more broadly, private climate governance can contribute to climate change mitigation and adaptation.
12:30-2 p.m. EDT, June 18

“Carbon Removal in the West: Carbon Capture, Carbon Credits, Incentives for Project Deployment, and On-the-Ground Action” – Numerous studies have pointed to carbon removal as essential to deep decarbonization goals, such as those outlined in the Paris Agreement on climate change and by the administration of President Joe Biden. This panel will explore two key approaches to removing carbon: carbon capture, utilization and storage (CCUS) and nature-based solutions such as enhanced forests and soil carbon sequestration. The panel also will assess lessons learned and implications for decarbonization and future projects.
3-4 p.m. EDT, June 18

Learn more about “Climate Change in the West: Land, People, Markets, and Law,” including a full list of panelists, by clicking here. For media registration, please contact Jennifer Kildee at 202-662-1732 or [email protected].

The ABA is the largest voluntary association of lawyers in the world. As the national voice of the legal profession, the ABA works to improve the administration of justice, promotes programs that assist lawyers and judges in their work, accredits law schools, provides continuing legal education, and works to build public understanding around the world of the importance of the rule of law. View our privacy statement online. Follow the latest ABA news at and on Twitter @ABANews.