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News Release

Animal Law Lecture Series to Explore the Parallels and Synergies of Animal Law and Environmental Law

Monday, March 8, 2021


The Environmental Law Center at Vermont Law School (VLS) will host “Animal Law and Environmental Law: Parallels and Synergies” on March 12.

The event is free and open to the public, and will be livestreamed from 1 to 2 p.m. at

The lecture will feature guest speaker Randall S. Abate JD/MSEL'89, the Rechnitz Family Endowed Chair in Marine and Environmental Law and Policy at Monmouth University.

With its intricate layers of international, federal, and state protections, environmental law is more established than animal law.

During his presentation, Professor Abate will draw from his recent book, "What Can Animal Law Learn from Environmental Law?" to compare the environmental and animal law fields and examine how the former’s successes in several key areas can help propel the objectives of the latter—and how the two fields can work together on topics such as climate change and food law and policy.

The event is the second of three in VLS’s Current Issues in Animal Law Lecture Series, which aims to explore legal solutions to the integrated challenges of animal and environmental protection."

"Animal law and environmental law are complementary," said Jenny Rushlow, director of VLS’s Environmental Law Center. "The humane and compassionate treatment of animals is deserving of legal protection for its own sake, and legal tools for addressing cruelty to animals are coincident with legal protections for natural resources and the environmental and public health of human communities.’

The first event in the series, "Environmental, Public Health, and Other Societal Harms of Extreme Farmed Animal Confinement," took place Feb. 5 and featured The Humane Society of America's Laura Fox JD/MELP'13. On April 9 from 1 to 2 p.m., Steven Wise of the Nonhuman Rights Project will present “The Struggle to Gain Legal Rights for Nonhuman Animals.”    

For additional information or to view the lecture series, visit