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Alternate Techniques For Environmental Dispute Resolution: A Practical Primer on How to Do Them

Glenn Paulson, Resolution and Avoidance of Disputes (1984)

Our largest wildlife sanctuary, known as the Paul J. Rainey Sanctuary, is in southwestern Louisiana. For well over a decade, we have had natural gas production there; only a few weeks ago, our first crude oil well came in. In short, Audubon fools around in the oil patch, just like many of you and your clients.

I'm pleased to be here—standing behind a podium and speaking to a group of lawyers—rather than sitting on a witness stand and being crossexamined by a group of lawyers. The attention to alternatives to litigation has grown fast in recent years. In the papers from the 1981 Institute on Administrative Law and Procedure, the potential role of negotiations in leading to a settlement was mentioned only once, in an excellent paper by Warren titled, “The Defense of Hazardous Waste Enforcement Actions.”

I have been asked to give you some very practical suggestions and clues on the factors that need to be considered in carrying out a successful dispute resolution effort, or in effect, to give a basic primer on the ABC's of how to do it.

In reflecting on my own experiences and reviewing some of the literature, I was struck at how often words starting with the letter C crop up in this field. Therefore that notion, a somewhat arbitrary one I admit, provides the thread for my remarks.

There are several components needed to mount a policy dialogue or