Environmental Law Resources

What is ECOLEX?
ECOLEX is an internet database providing the most comprehensive, global source of information on environmental law. Operated jointly by the FAO, IUCN, and UNEP, it combines the environmental law information holdings of those three organizations. ECOLEX contains comprehensive bibliographic and analytical information as well as full text links to more than 1,100 multilateral and bilateral agreements, 62,000 on national legislation, 420 court decisions, and 28,000 records on literature on law and policy.

Searching ECOLEX is easy. The portal offers a user-friendly Google-type feature by which the user can find information in all or selected datasets. For the more advanced user, ECOLEX includes specially tailored search forms for each of the datasets.

ECOLEX covers all aspects of environmental and natural resources conservation, including subjects such as fresh and marine water, air and atmosphere, soil and land use, species and ecosystems, fisheries and forestry, hazardous substances and waste, as well as food and agriculture.

All information has been analyzed and indexed in a standardized way, with descriptors such as country, name, territory, region, keywords, etc. harmonized.

ECOLEX is free of charge and has a trilingual user interface that allows users to search in English, French, and Spanish.

Visit ECOLEX at www.ecolex.org.


In conjunction with the textbook International Environmental Law & Policy, written by David Hunter, Durwood Zaelke, and James Salzman, this website compiles numerous treaties related to and that shape international environmental law.

Introduction to International Environmental Law

During the Fall 2011 semester, Professor David Hunter gave a lecture at the School of International Service. This lecture gave an "Introduction to International Environmental Law." If you want to watch an overview, you can do so here.

Hydraulic Fracturing ("Fracking") Law & Policy

During the 2012 Environmental Law Summer Session, Professors Amanda Leiter and Sambhav Sankar taught a new course on Hydraulic Fracturing ("Fracking") Law and Policy, in which students learned about the complex science and unsettled law of hydraulic fracturing. The course included sessions on environmental and health risks of natural gas drilling, two States' different approaches to the issue, and national fracking issues. The course gave a broad overview of the fracking issue and a range of perspectives to consider when thinking abou the costs and benefits of the ongoing natural gas boom.

Local, state, and national governments in the U.S. and abroad are currently wrestling with fracking law and policy. To learn more about this topic, explore the list of readings from this class. If you are interested in viewing the course syllabus, please contact Professor Leiter.