GreenLaw ‘empowers’ next generation of young lawyers

15 June 2020 By Naomi Neilson
GreenLaw

A young person-led organisation created at a Canberra-based university has designed legal research tasks that are empowering lawyers while protecting the environment.

GreenLaw is a new project from the Australian National University (ANU) Law Reform and Social Justice program that combines law with environmental advocacy. Founder Annika Reynolds said that as climate justice interacts with all areas of law, the projects reflect that diversity and allows students to engage and develop their skills. 

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“Through legal research tasks GreenLaw aims to empower environmentally conscious organisations to engage effectively with legal institutions. We work with ANU students and academics to reform the legal research and advocacy skills of our students,” she said. 

According to Ms Reynolds’ Q&A, GreenLaw currently has two active projects. First, the organisation is developing protester kits to aid the work of environmental protests to ensure protesters understand their rights as they actively advocate. 

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The other is with Farmers for Climate Action and aims to prepare a background report on the division of powers over land management between the Commonwealth and the states to inform a reform strategy to create a National Sustainable Agriculture Plan. 

“GreenLaw is an opportunity for young people to have a say in the transformative law reform that Australia needs to tackle the climate crisis, and to ensure Australia has a sustainable and equitable future,” said Ms Reynolds. 

“I hope that GreenLaw will empower young people and have a meaningful impact on the way NGOs and other environmental stakeholders engage with the law. But, most importantly, I envisage GreenLaw as a vehicle for major reform – it is evident that tinkering with the edges of our legal system will not be enough to overcome the climate crisis. Instead, we must strive for significant change.

GreenLaw ‘empowers’ next generation of young lawyers
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