Environmental & Energy Law

Pitt Law offers students who wish to explore the Environmental and Energy law field a flexible concentration with courses designed to equip them with the skills necessary for success. Students can study the key laws and regulations they will apply in their future legal practice. They can choose to take courses in any – or all – of the following substantive areas of law: pollution control, energy, oil and gas (including the law of shale plays), electrical utilities, land and natural resource use and conservation, renewable energy, and climate change. 

By completing this program, it is expected that students enrolled in the concentration will gain a comprehensive understanding of the substantive and procedural law of environmental and energy law. They will also acquire the ability to apply subject-matter expertise in environmental and energy law in experiential settings (e.g., clinics and externships or through classroom simulations) that will benefit them as they enter a career in the environmental or energy field or in another field in which knowledge of environmental or energy law is important.

Please note that this program may require that you complete an internship, externship, or other field work at a facility or facilities external to the University and that such facility or facilities may require a criminal background check, an Act 33/34 clearance (if applicable), and perhaps a drug screen to determine whether you are qualified to participate.


Foundational Courses (3 credits)

Fall Term

  • ​Environmental Law, Professor Marily Nixon (3 credits)
  • ​​​Energy Law, Professor John Hammond, Esq. (3 credits)

Elective Courses (5-6 credits required)

Fall Term

  • Administrative Law, Professor Elena Baylis (3 credits)
  • Animal Law (2 credits)
  • Expert Witness, Professor Michael George, Esq. and Professor Eugene Giotto (2 credits) 
  • Land Use, Professor Bruce I. Kogan (2 credits)

Spring Term

  • Climate Change and the Law, Professor Jennifer Smokelin (2 credits)
  • International Environmental Law, Professor Paolo Farah (3 credits)
  • Occupational Safety and Health, Professor Julie Vanneman, Esq. and Professor Chad Wissinger, Esq. (2 credits)

Skills Component (4-6 credits required)

  • Environmental Law and Policy Clinic (6 credits)
  • Environmental Moot Court Competition (1 credit)
  • Energy Law Moot Court Competition (1 credit)

​Spring Term

  • D.C. Externship, Professor Drew Roberts, Esq. (8-10 credits)