Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 52.81
Liaison Chad King
Submission Date Feb. 26, 2016
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.0

University of Denver
EN-14: Participation in Public Policy

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Chad King
Sustainability Coordinator
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution advocate for national, state/provincial, or local public policies that support campus sustainability or that otherwise advance sustainability?:

A brief description of how the institution engages in public policy advocacy for sustainability, including the issues, legislation, and ordinances for or against which the institution has advocated:

The University of Denver has been engaged in public policy related to social, economic, and environmental sustainability advocacy through several of its programs and institutes.

The Rocky Mountain Land Use Institute seeks to elevate the law, policy and practice of sustainable development in the West to promote nature-friendly, prosperous and equitable communities. Through innovative research, education and professional development programs and its renowned annual conference, the Institute trains and connects students and professionals across disciplines, sectors and regions to build the sustainable development field while creating new possibilities for the future of the West’s landscapes and livelihoods.

Since 1984, the Environmental Law Clinic at the University of Denver Sturm College of Law has provided real world experience for students interested in both developing practical legal skills and exploring the practice of environmental law. Students represent environmental advocacy organizations before courts and administrative agencies in a broad range of environmental matters, including endangered species, public lands, air quality and public health.

The Center on Rights Development promotes universal recognition of human rights in all societies by cultivating a deeper understanding of the issues implemented by the United Nations International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) through events and education, as well as global and local partnership.

The Conflict Resolution Institute is dedicated to exploring central issues and mechanism of conflict de-escalation,peaceful solutions, and reconciliation between parties, whether in international or domestic politics, the professional workplace, or personal relations.

A brief description of other political positions the institution has taken during the previous three years:

Center on Rights Development has published on a number of topics, including:
Mining, Water and Human Rights: Making the Connection,
Is Water the Hidden Agenda of Agricultural Land Acquisition in sub-Saharan Africa?

Sustainable Community Development Code Framework
The Code Framework embeds the best sustainability ideas in actual land use laws by way of an information and evaluation framework, aligning means with ends. It allows municipalities, regions and states to seamlessly audit and upgrade their development laws to remove barriers, create incentives and fill regulatory gaps based on a core set of sustainability objectives.

The Environmental Law Clinic has represented several cases, including:
Victory for Clean Air, Clean Energy in Lamar, Colorado
A Federal court late last Friday agreed with WildEarth Guardians and ruled that a coal-fired power plant on Colorado’s eastern plains violated the Clean Air Act, handing down a victory for clean air in the community of Lamar and a setback for the Arkansas River Power Authority’s efforts to keep burning coal.
Represented by the University of Denver Sturm College of Law Environmental Law Clinic, Guardians targeted the Arkansas River Power Authority’s refusal to limit mercury and other contaminants using the most up to date technology to safeguard public health.

Fracking Ban
The Environmental Law Clinic at University of Denver Sturm College of Law is representing Colorado Springs Citizens for Community Rights in its suit to move forward a citizen-initiated Charter Amendment banning fracking in the city. The City's Title Board has refused to move the amendment forward so the citizens can petition it onto the ballot. Kelly Davis spoke at a May 9 news conference where CSCCR announced the appeal. For more information, to get involved, to help gather signatures once we prevail, visit http://www.frackfreesprings.org

Wolf Introductions
Wendy Keefover, of WildEarth Guardians, said her organization sued after the national park, in creating its 2007 elk management plan, didn’t fully consider releasing wolves as a management tool. The park service approved the 20-year plan to reduce the elk herd because overgrazing damaged habitat and threatened other species.
In the Rocky Mountain National Park case, WildEarth Guardians is represented by the University of Denver Sturm College of Law Environmental Law Clinic. DU law student Jenni Barnes plans to argue the case Thursday before the panel of judges.

A brief description of political donations the institution made during the previous three years (if applicable):

The website URL where information about the institution’s advocacy efforts is available:


The work of our Environmental Law Clinic program: http://www.law.du.edu/index.php/law-school-clinical-program/clinical-programs/environmental-law-clinic

The work of our Center for Sustainable Development and International Peace: http://www.du.edu/korbel/sdip/research.html

The Center on Rights Development

The Conflict Resolution Institute

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