Katrina Fischer Kuh

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Katrina Fischer Kuh
Professor of Environmental Law

Katrina Fischer Kuh is the Haub Distinguished Professor of Environmental Law at the Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University.

Latest by this author

Marquette Law Review | June 2022

Communication of environmental information to the public is considered central to policies employing informational regulation, but the information produced pursuant to these measures largely fails to reach or be understood by lay individuals. For example, empirical data shows that corporations required to publicly report releases under the Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) do change their conduct to reduce those releases despite being under no legal obligation to do so. Most people, however, are wholly unaware of the information disclosed under the TRI and, even if made aware of it, unable to comprehend its significance. This insight calls into question oft-cited normative bases for environmental information regulation, including that it supports individual autonomy (by informing choice about exposure to risk) and enriches civic perspective (by enhancing participation in administrative process and other civic behaviors). Critical examination of how informational regulation works and the effects it produces is timely and important. Environmental law increasingly embraces policies that employ informational regulation—it is, for example, central to current proposals to require greater disclosure of climate change risk under securities laws and constitutes a core element of many Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) protocols. Yet, close analysis suggests that the success of public disclosure at prompting upstream effects (changing the behavior of regulated entities) masks its general failure to speak to the lay public. Improving informational regulation requires a clear-eyed assessment of its limitations and a recognition that information cannot simply be pumped into the public domain and expected to enlighten individuals.

Democracy in a Hotter Time: Climate Change and Democratic Transformation
Co-authors: James R. May | SSRN | March 2023

The Constitution as presently worded, interpreted, and applied is obstructing the development of a robust societal response to climate change, in part by failing adequately to protect healthy democratic processes and advance real social justice. We could, of course, amend the Constitution to explicitly support protection of the environment and/or better protect democratic processes and advance social justice. We could also encourage new understandings of existing constitutional text that recognizes the fundamental value of and right to a healthful environment, more effectively support healthy democratic processes, and go further to advance social justice. Any approach will require an open-eyed reckoning with how and why the constitutional status quo is failing to meet the climate moment.

Publications by this author
U.S. and International Aspects
Co-author: Michael B. Gerrard | American Bar Association, Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources | January 2012

This book takes a sweeping look at the current and proposed legal aspects of coping with climate change—from drought, extreme precipitation, heat waves, and wild fires to global shifts in temperature, sea level, water and food supply, coastal conditions, infrastructure, ecosystems, and human health and economies.

Applicable laws exist at all levels (international, national, state, local) and in different forms (constitutions, statutes, agency regulations, judicial decisions, private agreements, voluntary guidelines); they are not only uncoordinated but collectively embody numerous contradictions and inevitable gaps. This state-of-the-art compendium examines how laws are being modified, finessed, or imagined to deal with the impacts of climate change, both in the United States and around the globe.

An Introduction
Co-authors: Karl R. Rábago, Karl S. Coplan, Radina Valova, Shelby D. Green, Smita Narula | Edward Elgar Publishing Limited | April 2023

This timely and incisive book combines an introduction to the core legal and policy issues presented by climate change with a deeper analysis of decisions that will define the path forward. Offering a guide to key terms, concepts, and legal principles in the field, this book will help readers develop a sophisticated perspective on issues central to climate change law and policy.

Interview | 2023

Professor of law Katrina F. Kuh from the Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University discusses CERCLA, its origin & history, purpose, and impact.

Feature | November 2017

Kuh argues that in order to try to make progress toward sustainability it's important for us to reorient environmental law and policy to restore the cognitive connection between lifestyle and environmental effects, addressing environmentally significant individual behaviors including patterns and levels of consumption.

Research areas


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