Interdisciplinary Environmental Clinic
Established in 2000, the Interdisciplinary Environmental Clinic (IEC) is an interdisciplinary venture with a dual emphasis on experiential learning and community service.
The IEC represents non-profit groups, communities, and individuals who are pursuing legal action to protect the environment and community health but who cannot afford the legal representation and scientific expertise this requires. While providing pro bono legal and technical services to environmental and community organizations in Missouri and Illinois, the IEC simultaneously trains law students to handle complex legal cases, enables non-law students to apply their specialized fields to legal and policy issues, and teaches all students to communicate effectively and work productively in an interdisciplinary setting.
The clinic handles a wide range of matters, involving issues such as air and water pollution, solid and hazardous waste, energy, and environmental justice. Some matters involve adversarial proceedings before federal, state, or local administrative bodies or courts; other involve commenting on proposed permits and regulations; others call upon the clinic to evaluate a problem and devise a range of options for the client to use in addressing it; still others require clinic students to prepare and present educational materials to community groups. Click here to read about some of the Clinic's recent work.
Two environmental attorneys, an environmental engineer, and an environmental scientist teach in the IEC. Click here for more information about our Clinic faculty. Students from the Schools of Law, Engineering, Arts & Sciences, and Medicine, as well as the George Warren Brown School of Social Work and Olin Business School, work on IEC cases. The interdisciplinary structure of the clinic - involving students from several schools of the university in advocacy representation of clients - is unique among environmental law clinics. The interdisciplinary student teams enjoy front-line responsibility under faculty supervision for environmental law cases and projects of local, regional, and national importance.
Individuals with environmental and community health expertise, as well as a personal and professional commitment to environmental justice and community health, provide guidance to the IEC by serving on the Community Advisory Board. Board members represent community interests, the medical/public health field, law, and environmental engineering and science.
The IEC is housed throughout rooms 105-127 of the Law School’s Clinic Suite in Anheuser-Busch Hall. The clinic is housed with four of the other clinics – the Children and Family Advocacy Clinic, Entrepreneurship and Intellectual Property Clinic, Juvenile Law and Justice Clinic, and Low-Income Tax Clinic – in a law office environment within the Law School. Clinic facilities include: student work spaces with computers, telephones, and wireless internet access; conference rooms for meetings with clients, other students, and faculty supervisors; and fax, print, and photocopy machines.