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the law of energy for sustainable development

EPL’s symposium was held in honor of EPL founder Svitlana Kravchenko

ELAW partners at Environment-People-Law say clean, green, energy independence will protect Ukrainians and fragile resources while boosting national security.  Energy was featured at EPL’s international symposium in Lviv last month: “Human Rights and Environment in a New Ukraine.

Ukraine has been identified as one of the world’s most energy inefficient countries and relies on imports to meet its energy needs.

“We depend on natural gas, coal, and uranium, and import about 40% of our fuel to meet our needs,” says Olena Kravchenko, EPL Executive Director. “Moving beyond fossil fuels should help reduce conflict in eastern Ukraine and will help us build a more sustainable new Ukraine.”

ELAW Staff Attorney Jennifer Gleason gave a presentation at the symposium: “Energy Independence for Ukraine.”  Jen teaches energy law at the University of Oregon School of Law and has worked with ELAW partners around the world to advance green energy.  EPL has called on Jen to help craft a sustainable energy plan for Ukraine.

“I arrived in Ukraine from Germany where our partners at UfU had hosted the 2014 ELAW Annual Meeting,” says Jen.  “Sound policies have helped Germany surpass its goals for obtaining energy from sustainable sources. We are eager to help EPL draw on this experience. The key will be getting citizens to engage in improving energy efficiency. “

We will keep you informed of ELAW’s work answering EPL’s call for help to reduce Ukraine’s dependence on energy imports, while improving energy efficiency and promoting generation of electricity from sustainable sources.

Maggie Keenan
Communications Director

Related news:
Status of Crimea’s Natural Reserves Uncertain

Two weeks ago, I participated in a conference sponsored by the CUB Policy Center and the University of Oregon School of Law to address the future of energy efficiency in Oregon.  Governor Kitzhaber’s draft 10-year energy plan calls for Oregon to meet 100% of its load growth through energy efficiency measures.  Yes, that is right – 100% of growth over the next ten years. The Governor’s plan is smart – not only is it the best way for Oregon to address climate change, but it will also create local jobs.

More states and countries need to prioritize energy efficiency measures because they are often the least expensive way to add more resources to the grid, they address the urgent climate crisis, and they create local jobs – you can’t outsource retrofitting a commercial building.

CUB managed to pull together a phenomenal group of people – including the people who first helped Oregon become a leader in efficiency and the new generation of energy experts who will help Oregon take the next big leap forward.  Putting together a robust package of policies and programs that will enable Oregon to continue being a leader in energy efficiency is a big challenge – the conference was a good look back at what has been accomplished and a good start to the discussion about how to move forward.

ELAW is working with partners around the world to ensure that energy planning includes energy efficiency as a priority resource.

Jen Gleason
ELAW Staff Attorney

ELAW will be co-presenting the film “The 4th Revolution: Energy Autonomy” on October 8th at 8:15 p.m. and Sunday, October 9th at 1:30 p.m. at Bijou Art Cinemas as part of the GoodWorks Film Festival. A first time event in Eugene, the GoodWorks Film Festival will feature a series of acclaimed feature-length films with an array of social justice themes.

One of the highlights of the Festival will be the opportunity for audience members to interact with the creators of these inspiring films. Following both showings of “The 4th Revolution,” the filmmaker, Carl-A. Fechner, will join ELAW Staff Attorney and energy law professor Jen Gleason and EWEB representative Bill Welch in a Q&A with the audience.

Coming to see the film and participating in the conversation that follows will be a great way to find out what you can do to support renewable energy and make a difference.

The film presents the hypothesis that we can make the change to 100% renewable energy within the next 30 years if — and only if — we truly want to. Peak oil and the end of the fossil fuels era is near — if not already here — and whether we can make the shift to a more renewable society is up to us.

Eugene has already been a leading renewable energy adopter among similar-sized U.S. cities:

Yet, we still have a ways to go if we want to make the switch to 100% renewable energy. I hope you will join us this Saturday and Sunday to learn more about what you can do.

The Festival will feature several other socially conscious films, including: “Granito: How to Nail a Dictator,” “Bag It: Is your life too Plastic?” and “The Topp Twins: Untouchable Girls.”

Find the complete Festival schedule here.

See you at the Festival!

Glenn Gillis
IT Manager

Germany now gets more than 20% of its electricity from renewable sources, and Germany is just getting started.  Renewable energy expert Paul Gipe reports that “renewable energy supplied nearly 21% of [Germany’s] electricity during the first half of 2011.”  Last year, the German Federal Environment Agency announced that a study showed that Germany could get 100% of its electricity from renewables by 2050.  According to the U.K. Guardian, “the Environment Agency’s study found that switching to green electricity by 2050 would have economic advantages, especially for the vital export-oriented manufacturing industry. It would also create tens of thousands of jobs.”

In comparison, what we’ve accomplished in the U.S. is less than exceptional.   Looking at the most recent data (2010), just over 10% of our electricity comes from renewable energy sources (according to’s analysis of data from the most recent U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) Monthly Energy Review).

ELAW is working to bring lessons from Germany to lawyers in the U.S. and around the world so they can help their countries adopt strong policies supporting renewables.  While some countries have already followed Germany’s lead and have adopted feed-in tariffs and the other policies needed to move toward a more sustainable future, many more have yet to follow.

If you’re in Eugene and would like to learn more about shifting energy production to renewables, I invite you to join ELAW on October 8, 2011 (save the date!) at the Good Works Film Festival at  Bijou Art Cinemas. ELAW will be co-presenting  The 4th Revolution: Energy Autonomy, a film which follows 10 environmental activists in 10 countries on four continents as they work to shift energy production to 100% renewables.  We can all learn more about the innovative steps other countries are taking to move toward a sustainable future,  and I hope you will join us.

Jen Gleason
Staff Attorney

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