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News Release

VLS Presents Norman Williams Lecture on 'Shifting Energy Landscapes' April 13

Thursday, April 6, 2017


​University of Kansas School of Law Professor Uma Outka will discuss "Shifting Energy Landscapes" during the 13th annual Norman Williams Distinguished Lecture in Land Use Planning and the Law at 5:45 p.m. Thursday, April 13, in Chase Community Center at Vermont Law School. The event, free and open to the public and press, will be streamed live at

Outka plans to address the energy sector's transitional and uncertain moment through the lens of energy landscapes—the physical landscapes that narrate a shift in land use for energy in the United States, and the regulatory landscape framing the pace and ambition of the low-carbon trajectory. The lecture will highlight drivers and implications of these changing landscapes as they bear on the goal of decarbonization and electric power.

"We look forward to welcoming Professor Outka to Vermont Law School and encourage anyone interested in renewable energy and a low-carbon future to join us for her lecture," said Associate Dean Melissa Scanlan, director of the Environmental Law Center.

At KU School of Law, Outka teaches Energy Law, Environmental Law, and Property. Her scholarship has appeared in law journals including Vanderbilt Law Review, Ecology Law Quarterly, Colorado Law Review, and Stanford Environmental Law Journal. Her chapter on "Legal Regimes for Land Use, Land Use Change and Forestry" is featured in the Research Handbook on Climate Change Mitigation Law (Edward Elgar Publishing, 2015). She earned a juris doctor (JD) from University of Maine School of Law, a master's degree from University of Southern Maine, and a bachelor's degree from University of Virginia.

The Norman Williams Distinguished Lecture in Land Use Planning and the Law series is named for Norman Williams, who came to Vermont Law School in 1975 after a long and distinguished career in public service and teaching, particularly in the area of land use planning, and who played a key role in founding the Environmental Law Center. The lecture series is a gift of Frances Yates, a longtime VLS supporter and former trustee, in memory of Professor Williams, Charles Yates '93 and Anya Yates '94.

For more information about the Williams Lecture, visit, email, or call 802-831-1287. For more information about Vermont Law School events, visit


Vermont Law School, a private, independent institution, is home to the nation's largest and deepest environmental law program. VLS offers a Juris Doctor curriculum that emphasizes public service; three Master's Degrees—Master of Environmental Law and Policy, Master of Energy Regulation and Law, and Master of Food and Agriculture Law and Policy; and four post-JD degrees —LLM in American Legal Studies (for foreign-trained lawyers), LLM in Energy Law, LLM in Environmental Law, and LLM in Food and Agriculture Law. The school features innovative experiential programs and is home to the Environmental Law Center, South Royalton Legal Clinic, Environmental and Natural Resources Law Clinic, Energy Clinic, Food and Agriculture Clinic, and Center for Applied Human Rights. For more information, visit, find us on Facebook, and follow us on Twitter and Instagram.