BOSTON COLLEGE
Environmental Affairs

Student
Publications

Volume 30 2003 Number 2

[Pages 275-314]
ECO-INDUSTRIAL DEVELOPMENT AND THE RESOURCE CONSERVATION AND RECOVERY ACT: EXAMINING THE BARRIER PRESUMPTION
Jo Jeanne Lown*

Abstract:  Environmental regulation certainly has its supporters and its critics, but even the most ardent environmentalists recognize that regulation alone has not solved all environmental problems. Creative alternatives in land-use, pollution reduction, and sustainable development are continuously proposed and debated. One possible solution that bodes well for pollution reduction, or even prevention, has been the concept of eco-industrial development (EID). EID describes a closed-loop industrial cycle where generated materials or by-products are returned to the manufacturing process, either used by another facility, or as feedstock for the production of other products. It has been argued, usually by the regulated community, that environmental regulations create unnecessary impediments to creative solutions like EID. The Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) regulations are often cited as the most obstructing. This Note examines whether RCRA creates barriers, and if so, to what extent RCRA regulations complicate EID in the United States.

[Pages 315-352]
NATIONAL LEAGUE OF CITIES RISING: HOW THE TELECOMMUNICATIONS ACT OF 1996 COULD EXPAND TENTH AMENDMENT JURISPRUDENCE
Jared O'Connor*

Abstract:  Whether and how the Tenth Amendment affects Congress’s Commerce Clause power has been the subject of heated debate in the Supreme Court for over thirty years. In 1976, the Court held in National League of Cities v. Usery that the Tenth Amendment acts to immunize certain essential aspects of state sovereignty from federal regulation. This case was later overruled as stating an unworkable rule, but the 1992 case of New York v. United States revived the Tenth Amendment as instead standing for an anti-commandeering principle. In 2000, a lone Fourth Circuit judge argued that a provision of the Telecommunications Act of 1996 (TCA) violated this principle. This Note tracks the evolution of the Supreme Court’s Tenth Amendment jurisprudence, analyzes how the challenge posed by the TCA falls within that evolution, and concludes that such challenge may provide the next step in the Court’s surreptitious revival of National League of Cities.

[Pages 353-398]
THE FEDERAL ENERGY REGULATORY COMMISSION AND ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE: DO THE NATIONAL ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY ACT AND THE CLEAN AIR ACT OFFER A BETTER WAY?
Jason Pinney*

[Pages 399-431]
STATUTORY REDUNDANCY: WHY CONGRESS SHOULD OVERHAUL THE ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT TO EXCLUDE CRITICAL HABITAT DESIGNATION
Robert J. Scarpello*

Abstract:  There is much debate concerning the enforcement of the critical habitat designation provisions of the Endangered Species Act. Most scholars argue that the Secretary of the Interior abuses the “not prudent” and “not determinable” exceptions to avoid making such designations when endangered or threatened species are listed. The Endangered Species Act of 1973 was enacted to achieve the dual goals of species conservation and species recovery, achieved primarily through ecosystem conservation. Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act requires all federal agencies to consult with the Secretary of the Interior to evaluate the consequences of proposed federal actions to ensure they neither jeopardize the existence of the endangered species nor destroy or modify a designated critical habitat. Because these standards overlap, the critical habitat designation provision should be excluded from the Endangered Species Act, since it serves as nothing more than a weapon for environmentalists to block land development. It forces the Department of the Interior to spend its time defending lawsuits, rather than listing more species and thoroughly analyzing federal actions that may jeopardize vital ecosystems.