Fall semester events will feature discussions on land use in the Midwest, biodiversity, wildfire management, and water in a changing climate.
Tuesday, September 19, 2023

Events and programing made possible by the Hubbell Environmental Law Initiative (HELI) engage the College of Law with some of today’s most pressing environmental law issues. These events further the core of HELI’s mission by fostering education and generating interest in the areas of natural resources, environmental, and energy law. Almost all of HELI’s events are free and open to the public. We invite you to save the dates below, as well as encourage everyone from the University and the broader community to participate.  

Convening leaders with regional and national expertise  

This fall semester, HELI is hosting two larger events for the public, as well as various events that are cosponsored by other partners. These events will feature discussions on topics such as land use in the Midwest, biodiversity, wildfire management, and water in a changing climate. 

HELI will host the panel "Land Use and Biodiversity in an Ag State" on October 4, 2023.

October 4 | 12:45 – 1:45 pm | Room 225, Boyd Law Building

On Wednesday, October 4, 2023, HELI will host a panel event entitled Land Use and Biodiversity in an Ag State: Policies and Programs for Habitat and Species Conservation in Iowa.” This event will take place from 12:45 – 1:45pm in room 225 of Boyd Law Building and will be streamed live on Zoom. For this event, HELI will welcome panelists to discuss habitat and species conservation on Midwest agricultural lands. Panelists will discuss the 30 by 30 Initiative, existing laws, current conservation programs, as well as legal and policy tools available for increasing habitat and protecting biodiversity on privately owned agricultural land across the state.

The Panelists for this event are: 

  • Ingrid Gronstal, Research Fellow at HELI, Iowa Law
  • Kate Hansen, Senior Policy Associate, Center for Rural Affairs 
  • Anna Gray, Public Policy Director & Counsel, Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation  
  • Matt Russell, State Executive Director, Iowa Farm Service Agency, USDA
HELI will host a fireside chat on "Water in the 21st Century" on October 10, 2023.

October 10 | 5:30 – 6:30 pm | Room 225, Boyd Law Building

On Tuesday, October 10, HELI will host a fireside chat style discussion, "Water in the 21st Century," between Dean Kevin Washburn and Tanya Trujillo, Iowa Law graduate (92JD) and former Assistant Secretary for Water and Science at the US Department of the Interior. Assistant Secretary Trujillo is currently the Water Policy Advisor to the New Mexico Governor and Deputy State Engineer. Assistant Secretary Trujillo will discuss her perspectives as an Iowa law graduate whose winding career path took her from private practice to the nonprofit sector and then roles in federal and state governmentAssistant Secretary Trujillo, who recently worked on the challenging project of adjusting historical water allocations for the Colorado River, will speak about her experience in the natural resources fieldincluding nonprofit work on water stakeholder negotiations in the West and state and federal efforts to implement science-based climate policy.    

Registration for the event is open through the date of the event by clicking here. 

Expanding reach with partners 

When the opportunities arise, HELI co-sponsors events with campus and community partners. This fall, HELI is cosponsoring events with the Environmental Law Society (ELS) and the Iowa State Bar Association (ISBA). 

The ELS Board has organized the following events, open to interested parties in the Boyd Law BuildingOn October 17, 2023, the ELS Board is organizing a lunch and learn talk with Visiting Professor Stephen Miller. Professor Miller will lead the talk, titled "Good Fire Federalism: Rethinking Prescribed Fire Liability and Regulation", which will be a discussion about his research on wildfire management, prescribed burns and forest management. To register for the event, email the ELS President, Kegan Peters, at kegan-peters@uiowa.edu.  

The ELS Board is also organizing an Environmental Law Internships Student Panel over the lunch hour on October 26, 2023. At this event, ELS will host a student panel on various environmental summer internships, where students will discuss their experiences applying for, and interning in, the legal field. A list of environmental legal internships will be provided in advance for those interested in attending. To register for the event, email the ELS President, Kegan Peters, at kegan-peters@uiowa.edu. 

The Hubbell Initiative is also cosponsoring a continuing education credit seminar for practicing members of the Iowa State Bar Association. On November 16, 2023, at both the Boyd Law Building and the ISBA CLE office in Des Moines, HELI will co-host the day long Environmental Law Seminar ISBA CLE Event. For those interested, visit the ISBA page for registration information. HELI will organize and cosponsor various networking opportunities for students and CLE attendees on the day of the CLE Seminar.  

The CLE event will conclude the Fall semester events and program for the HELI team. 

Looking forward to spring semester

The Hubbell Initiative is planning several events for the spring semester, as well, including two larger events for the public, which HELI invites you to make note of on your calendars. Details and specifics will be announced closer to the end of the fall semester.  

The first event will be centered around the status of dispersing Inflation Reduction Act funding. The panel event, with the tentative name ofImplementing the Climate and Clean Energy Provisions in the Inflation Reduction Actwill likely occur on a Friday in February, in connection with the 18th month-anniversary of the signing of the historic Inflation Reduction Act in 2022. HELI will cohost and cosponsor this event with campus and community partners.

In April, HELI will bring together federal, regional, and state experts for a series of panels discussions on Wetlands Conservation after Sackett v. EPA. This event structure will feature a series of panels, one of which will discuss Sackett implications at the national level, as well as what Sackett could mean for habitat and species preservation in Iowa and the larger Midwest region. 

To stay up to date about HELI events, programming, and information, please contact Program Director, Blake Rupe.