I. Course Prefix/Number: PAR 219
Course Name: Environmental Law
Credits: 3 (3 lecture; 0 lab)
III. Course (Catalog) Description
Course covers American environmental law. Topics include the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act, the Endangered Species Act, wetlands, asbestos, and environmental racism. Emphasis is on the role of the paralegal in environmental law issues. Ethical issues dealing with environmental law are also discussed.
IV. Learning Objectives
- demonstrate an understanding of environmental law in the United States.
- demonstrate an understanding of the role of the paralegal with regard to issues of environmental law.
- demonstrate competency in resolving issues of environmental law.
- demonstrate an understanding of the ethical concerns that typically arise in a situation involving environmental law issues.
V. Academic Integrity and Student Conduct
• plagiarism (turning in work not written by you, or lacking proper citation),
• falsification and fabrication (lying or distorting the truth),
• helping others to cheat,
• unauthorized changes on official documents,
• pretending to be someone else or having someone else pretend to be you,
• making or accepting bribes, special favors, or threats, and
• any other behavior that violates academic integrity.
There are serious consequences to violations of the academic integrity policy. Oakton's policies and procedures provide students a fair hearing if a complaint is made against you. If you are found to have violated the policy, the minimum penalty is failure on the assignment and, a disciplinary record will be established and kept on file in the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs for a period of 3 years.
Please review the Code of Academic Conduct and the Code of Student Conduct, both located online at
VI. Sequence of Topics
- Introduction to Environmental Law
- Overview of the Environmental Protection Agency
- National Environmental Policy Act and Common Environmental Doctrines
- The Clean Air Act, 1900 - 1970
- The Clean Air Act, 1970 – Present
- The History of the Clean Water Act and the Present Statute
- The Clean Water Act—Regulations, Standards, and Technology
- Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation & Liability Act, the 1980s
- The Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation & Liability Act, the 1990 Amendments and Superfund Reform
- Toxic Substance Control Act
- The Endangered Species Act
- Environmental Racism
- Ethics in Environmental Law
VII. Methods of Instruction
- Class discussion
- Class and individual projects
Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.
VIII. Course Practices Required
- Reading Assignments
- Writing Assignments
IX. Instructional Materials
Moya & Fono, Federal Environmental Law: The User’s Guide, West Group, 2001
X. Methods of Evaluating Student Progress
- Midterm and final examinations
- Classroom participation
XI. Other Course Information
If you have a documented learning, psychological, or physical disability you may be entitled to reasonable academic accommodations or services. To request accommodations or services, contact the Access and Disability Resource Center at the Des Plaines or Skokie campus. All students are expected to fulfill essential course requirements. The College will not waive any essential skill or requirement of a course or degree program.
Oakton Community College is committed to maintaining a campus environment emphasizing the dignity and worth of all members of the community, and complies with all federal and state Title IX requirements.
Resources and support for
- pregnancy-related and parenting accommodations; and
- victims of sexual misconduct
Resources and support for LGBTQ+ students can be found at www.oakton.edu/lgbtq.