Environmental Law considers state and federal law regarding protection of our natural resources against such factors that include pollution of soil, air, or water. Depletion of our natural resources such as oil, coal, and clean water are also common issues that require protection.

 

Pollution control and remediation are the two main categories to consider for protection and conservation of natural resources. International treaties may also play a big part in our state and federal laws. The treaties may address matters such as greenhouse gas emissions, hunting or fishing of endangered species, or testing of environmentally destructive weapons that cause catastrophic effects.

 

Usually, violations of environmental laws are handled in a civil manner, with the imposition of fines and civil damages to injured parties. In some instances, the laws are changed in order to impose criminal consequences such as fines and/or jail time. Some examples of violations include building on protected lands or companies who pollute public and/or protected waters.

 

In addition to violations under civil or criminal laws, environmental laws effect product design of emission controls, materials, and electronic devices. Various tax laws may offer incentives for activities that benefit the environment such as solar panels and electric cars. The laws affect housing codes for insulation, windows, and construction materials. Environmental laws have a huge effect in our everyday lives.