Skip to main content
LSU Law Logo


L.L.M., Environmental & Energy Law, 2017, with highest honors, George Washington University Law School

J.D., with high honors, Order of the Coif, 2012, George Washington University Law School

M.A. Latin American & Hemispheric Studies, 2012, George Washington University Elliott School of International Affairs

B.A., Political Science, 2008, University of Utah, magna cum laude

Contact Information

  • Office: 440
  • Phone: 225-578-5292
  • Fax: 225-578-5937
  • Email:

Additional Information

Nicholas Bryner

John P. Laborde Endowed Professorship in Energy Law 1 and 2
Director, Climate Change Law and Policy Project; Associate Professor of Law


Professor Bryner was an Emmett/Frankel Fellow in Environmental Law and Policy at the UCLA School of Law for 2016-18. He served as Visiting Associate Professor and Environmental Law Fellow at George Washington University Law School (August 2014-June 2016) where he co-taught courses on environmental and natural resources law.

Bryner received his B.A. magna cum laude in Political Science from the University of Utah, with minors in Latin American Studies and Chemistry. He also earned joint degrees (J.D. / M.A.) in law and Latin American and Hemispheric Studies from The George Washington University Law School and Elliott School of International Affairs. At GW, Bryner was elected to the Order of Coif, received the Pro Bono Service Award and the Patton Boggs Foundation Public Policy Fellowship, and was a Presidential Merit Scholar. In addition, he served as an Articles Editor for The George Washington Law Review.

Courses Taught

Environmental Law; Administrative Law; Natural Resources Law and Policy; Energy Law and Regulation

Selected Publications


Never Look Back: Non-Regression in Environmental Law, 43 U. Pa. J. Int’l L. ___ (forthcoming 2022).

A Proibição do Retrocesso no Direito Ambiental: Perspectivas no Contexto da Pandemia, 100 Revista de Direito Ambiental ___ (Braz.) (Oct.-Dec. 2020) [The Principle of Non-Regression in Environmental Law in the Context of the Pandemic]

The Green New Deal and Green Transitions, 44 Vt. L. Rev. 723 (2020).

An Ecological Theory of Statutory Interpretation, 54 Idaho L. Rev. 3 (2018).

Presidents Lack the Authority to Abolish or Diminish National Monuments, 103 Va. L. Rev. Online 55 (2017) (with Mark Squillace, Eric Biber, & Sean B. Hecht).

  • Cited in and attached to comment letter submitted to the U.S. Department of the Interior by 121 law professors
  • SSRN Weekly Top 5 Papers (week of May 22, 2017)

Washed Out: Policy and Practical Considerations Affecting Return after Hurricane Katrina and Superstorm Sandy, 3 J. Asian Dev. 73 (2017) (with Marisa Garcia-Lozano & Carl Bruch).

People of the Sun: Leveraging Electricity Reform to Promote Renewable Energy and Climate Change Mitigation in Mexico, 56 Nat. Res. J. 329 (2016).

Public Interests and Private Land: The Ecological Function of Property in Brazil, 34 Va. Envtl. L.J. 122 (2016).

In Dubio Pro Natura: A Principle for Strengthening Environmental Rule of Law, 78 Revista de Direito Ambiental 245 (2015) (Braz.).

Brazil’s Green Court: Environmental Law in the Superior Tribunal de Justiça (High Court of Brazil), 29 Pace Envtl. L. Rev. 470 (2012).

Edited Volumes

Compliance and Enforcement of Environmental Law (LeRoy C. Paddock, David L. Markell, & Nicholas S. Bryner, eds.) (Edward Elgar Publishing, Encyclopedia of Environmental Law Vol. IV) (2017).

Decision Making in Environmental Law (LeRoy C. Paddock, Robert L. Glicksman, & Nicholas S. Bryner, eds.) (Edward Elgar Publishing, Encyclopedia of Environmental Law Vol. II) (2016).

Book Chapters

“Ethical Issues Raised by Cap and Trade Regimes,” in Routledge Handbook on Applied Climate Ethics (Donald Brown, Kathryn Gwiazdon, & Laura Westra, eds.) (forthcoming 2022).

“Brazil,” in Oxford Handbook of Comparative Environmental Law (Jorge Viñuales & Emma Lees, eds.) (Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2018) (with Justice Antonio Herman Benjamin).

“A Constitutional Human Right to a Healthy Environment,” in Research Handbook on Fundamental Concepts of Environmental Law 168-95 (Douglas Fisher ed.) (Edward Elgar Publishing 2016).

“Public Intervenors and Public Funding in Environmental Decision Making,” in Environmental Decision Making 430-40 (LeRoy C. Paddock, Robert L. Glicksman, & Nicholas S. Bryner, eds.) (Edward Elgar Publishing 2016).

Other Publications

“Trump administration and California are on collision course over vehicle emissions rules,” The Conversation, Aug. 2, 2018 (with Meredith Hankins),

“Why California gets to write its own auto emissions standards: 5 questions answered,” The Conversation, Apr. 6, 2018 (with Meredith Hankins),

“President Trump’s national monument rollback is illegal and likely to be reversed in court,” The Conversation, Dec. 4, 2017 (with Eric Biber, Mark Squillace, and Sean B. Hecht),

“National monuments: Presidents can create them, but only Congress can undo them,” The Conversation, Apr. 27, 2017 (with Eric Biber, Mark Squillace, and Sean B. Hecht),

“Electricity Reform and Climate Change Mitigation in Mexico,” GW Law Environmental & Energy Law Perspectives (Spring 2015).

Regular contributor to the Legal Planet blog from 2016-2018 (see posts at

Selected Presentations

“Judge Kavanaugh on Administrative and Environmental Law,” Judging:SCOTUS Edition, LSU Law (Sept. 12, 2018).

Session Rapporteur, “Water Justice and the Global Judicial Institute for the Environment,” 8th World Water Forum, Brasília, Brazil (Mar. 20, 2018).

Panelist, “California v. The Feds: Major Federal Legal Concerns for California,” Planning and Conservation League, 2018 California Environmental Assembly, Sacramento, CA (Feb. 24, 2018).

Participant, Roundtable Discussion, International Colloquium on “Sharing Water,” Preparatory Event for the Judges and Prosecutors Sub-process of the 8th World Water Forum, Rio de Janeiro (Dec. 8, 2017).

Panelist, “Environmental Rule of Law: Trends and Emerging Themes,” II Inter-American Congress on the Environmental Rule of Law, Santiago, Chile (Sept. 5, 2017).

Panelist, “Cross-Border Perspectives on Environmental Governance,” Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Foundation Natural Resources Law Teachers Institute, Banff, Alberta, Canada (June 1, 2017).

Testimony on “New Principles of Environmental Law: From and Beyond Constitutions,” before the Environment Committee of the Federal Senate of Brazil, Brasília, Brazil (May 22, 2017).

“Brazil,” Oxford Handbook of Comparative Environmental Law Workshop, Cambridge, UK (Jan. 19, 2017).

“The Principle ‘In Dubio Pro Natura’,” Symposium on Judges and Nature, Supreme Court of Hawai‘i (Sept. 5, 2016).

Session Rapporteur, “A Planet Under Siege: The Role of Environmental Courts and the Global Judicial Institute for the Environment,” IUCN World Conservation Congress, Honolulu, Hawai‘i (Sept. 4, 2016).

“The Future of Environmental Law” (with Michelle Lim), 2016 IUCN/UNEP World Environmental Law Congress, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil (Apr. 27-30, 2016).

Panel Moderator, “The Federal Role in Determining the Future Electricity Mix,” 2016 J.B. and Maurice C. Shapiro Environmental Law Symposium, The George Washington University Law School (Mar. 11, 2016).

“People of the Sun: Leveraging Electricity Reform to Promote Renewable Energy and Climate Change Mitigation in Mexico,” Mexico Energy Reforms: New Challenges and Opportunities, University of New Mexico School of Law (Mar. 4, 2016).

“Return After Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy,” U.S.-Japan Research Institute—USJI Week, Washington, DC (Feb. 24, 2016).