Meet the Author:
Rebecca Bratspies,  New York City

Cities are ecosystems of people, nature, and infrastructure
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  • Rebecca Bratspies

    Rebecca Bratspies

    Director, Center for Urban Environmental Reform
    Professor of Law
    City University of New York,
    New York, NY USA

    Rebecca Bratspies is a Professor of Law at the CUNY School of Law where she is the founding director of the CUNY Center for Urban Environmental Reform. She has published widely on regulating under conditions of uncertainty—with a focus on GMOs and corporate responsibility. Her recent scholarship focuses on questions of sustainability, and on the intersection of human rights and environmental regulation. She is a scholar with the Center for Progressive Reform, an appointed member of the ABA Standing Committee on Environmental Law, and a member of the Executive Committee of the American Association of Law Schools Section on the Environment.

    Before entering academia, Professor Bratspies served as a judicial law clerk to the Honorable C. Arlen Beam of the Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals. As a Henry Luce Foundation Scholar, Professor Bratspies spent a year seconded to the Republic of China (Taiwan) Environmental Protection Administration. She has taught at the University of Idaho, Michigan State University and NYU. She holds a BA in Biology from Wesleyan University and a J.D. cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania.

    September 23, 2015

    feature
    What Pope Francis Might Do to Advance Climate Justice During His Visit to New York
    Rebecca Bratspies, New York City

    Pope Francis visits the United States in late September 2015.  He will speak in Washington, D.C., New York, and Philadelphia, including an address at the United Nations and to a full Congress. His visit will be an opportunity for reflection...

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    August 12, 2015

    GreekGreenRoofPhotoAndrewClementsFEATURE
    Why don’t all public buildings have green roofs? Or all large private buildings (e.g. businesses)? Would this be a good idea? What would it take to make it happen and to make it worthwhile?
    Maryam Akbarian, Tehran
    Wolfgang Ansel, Nürtingen
    Nathalie Baumann, Basel
    Michael Berkshire, Chicago
    Rebecca Bratspies, New York City
    Amy Chomowicz, Portland
    Andrew Clements, Corinth
    Karla Dakin, Denver
    Stuart Gaffin, New York
    Dusty Gedge, London
    André Gonçalves, Goiânia
    Ulrike Grau, Mexico City
    Angela Loder, Denver
    Amosh Neupane, Middlebury
    Matt Palmer, New York City
    Kerry Ross, Calgary
    Kaveh Samiei, Tehran
    Julie Santos, London & Buenos Aires
    Kate Scherer, New York
    Mark Simmons, Austin
    Kevin Songer, Jacksonville
    Christine Thuring, Sheffield

    16 Comment(s)
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    February 19, 2014

    Oily sheen on Newtown Creek, 7 July 2006. Photo: Riverkeeper
    Greenpoint’s Environmental Benefit Fund as a Model for Community Participation
    Rebecca Bratspies, New York City

    At first glance, Greenpoint seems much like many other ethnically diverse New York City neighborhood struggling with rapid gentrification. Traditional neighborhood businesses jostle for space with trendy new restaurants and shops, while developers hype luxury high-rise development proposals. But, underneath...

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    February 3, 2014

    ÜÄàÉä_3878
    What are the social justice implications of urban ecology, and how can we make sure that “green cities” are not synonymous with “gentrified” or “exclusive” cities?
    Harini Nagendra, Bangalore
    Stephanie Pincetl, Los Angeles
    Jim Labbe, Portland
    Rebecca Bratspies, New York City
    PK Das, Mumbai
    Cecilia Herzog, Rio de Janeiro
    Charlie Nilon, Columbia
    Brian McGrath, New York City
    Xie Pengfei, Beijing

    17 Comment(s)
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    August 11, 2013

    Denver Comic Con founder Charlie LaGreca, in center. Photo: Denver Post
    A Comic Book Sparks Kids Toward Environmental Justice
    Rebecca Bratspies, New York City

    In my first blog post for The Nature of Cities, I wrote about environmental justice as a bridge between traditional environmentalism and an increasingly urban global population. I suggested that we had work to do to makes environmental concerns salient...

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    March 17, 2013

    8_GowausSurface2PhotoJoshuaKristalFEATURE
    Dolphin as Metaphor for the Limits of Environmental Law
    Rebecca Bratspies, New York City

    On January 25, 2013, a dolphin swam into Brooklyn, New York’s Gowanus Canal. Poor dolphin! Gowanus canal is a 1.8 mile long Superfund site—a toxic stew of pesticides, heavy metals and PCBs masquerading as “the waters of the United States”...

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    October 14, 2012

    Coyotes
    Embracing Environmental Justice to Green Our Cities
    Rebecca Bratspies, New York City

    The future of the environmental movement lies in the world’s cities. In 2008, for the first time in human history, more of us lived in urban environments than in any other setting.  This trend is only going to accelerate as...

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