Esmeralda Colombo Receives Second Place in Prestigious Essay Contest
Esmeralda Colombo receives second place in the prestigious Professor William R. Ginsberg Memorial Essay Contest 2016 for her essay titled: ““Enforcing International Law in U.S. Courts: The Law of the Sea Convention at Play in Kivalina.”
Professor William R. Ginsberg Memorial Essay Contest
The essay contest was launched by the New York State Bar Association Environmental Law Section, and is named for the late environmental law pioneer William R. Ginsberg. The annual competition is meant to challenge law students to analyze the environmental issues confronting the world today.
The competition is open to all J.D. and LL.M. students from across the New York State, and the judging criteria include organizational practicality, originality, quality of research, and clarity of style. The prize consists of money award.
Water pollution in Alaska
In her article titled: “Enforcing International Law in U.S. Courts: The Law of the Sea Convention at Play in Kivalina,” Colombo focuses on potential avenues of legal recourse for members of an Iñupiat community in Kivalina, Alaska, affected by water pollution from the largest zinc mine worldwide.
In her article, she propounds that some environmental provisions of the Law of the Sea (LOS) Convention can be invoked in a case of water degradation currently unfolding in Kivalina due to the operation of the mine along with US environmental statues and Alaska common law.
Her analysis was sparked by the defective protection of the environment provided by solely domestic legislation. Rather, she contends that the Iñupiat community of Kivalina are able to invoke provisions of the LOS Convention that are customary according to US law in both federal and Alaska courts.
If such provisions were to be applied for the interpretation of US domestic law, it would - according to Colombo - ensure a better protection of the Kivalina community and the environment.
Industrialpollution cases unfolding in Europe
Now as a research fellow at the University of Bergen in Norway, Colombo intends to use her case study on Kivalina as a mold for prospective case studies on instances of environmental pollution unfolding in Europe.