Episode 083 – Conversation with BLS Prof. William Araiza

Episode 083 – Conversation with BLS Prof. William Araiza.mp3

In this podcast, Brooklyn Law School Professor William D. Araiza discusses his recent article The Public Trust Doctrine as an Interpretive Canon, 45 U.C. Davis L. Rev. (2012). A full text PDF version of the article is available here. In the article, Professor Araiza proposes an expanded version of the public trust doctrine as an interpretive canon and suggests that a canon-based understanding fits both the doctrine’s foundational importance in American law and its uncertain doctrinal grounding. These characteristics have led scholars to advocate a canon approach for other foundational legal rules and Professor Araiza submits that an analogous analysis might support a similar approach to the public trust concept. In applying the canon approach, he explains how a canon would operate as a preliminary matter, and then considers the canon’s proper scope and concrete implementation. He then considers and answers objections to the canon approach, ultimately concluding that none of them defeats the basic thrust of the argument. The podcast concludes using the illustration of recent court actions seeking to use the public trust doctrine to enjoin activity that contributes to climate change. See article Public Trust Climate Litigation: On Life Support, But Still Breathing for Now. For more on the Public Trust Doctrine, see Property and the Public Trust Doctrine by Randy T. Simmons in the BLS Library catalog. A full text version of that item is available at this link.