Richard B. Stewart

University Professor
Director, Guarini Center on Environmental and Land Use Law

New York University



B.A. Yale University
M.A. Oxford University
LLB Harvard University

Research Interests

  • Nuclear waste regulatory law and policy
  • Economic incentives for environmental protection
  • The precautionary principle and regulatory law and policy
  • Climate law
  • Global administrative law

Brief Biography

Richard B. Stewart is University Professor and John Edward Sexton Professor of Law at New York University, Chair and Faculty Director of the Hauser Global Law School Program, and Director of NYU’s Center on Environmental and Land Use Law.  He is an internationally recognized scholar in environmental law and policy and administrative law and regulation. His current research interests include nuclear waste regulatory law and policy; global administrative law, the use of economic incentives for environmental protection, international and domestic climate change regulatory policy, international trade and regulatory conflicts over agricultural biotechnologies, and the precautionary principle of environmental regulation. He has been extensively involved in climate policy issues and in environmental law reform projects in China and Central and Eastern Europe.

During 1989-1991 Stewart served as Assistant Attorney General for Environment and Natural Resources at the U.S. Department of Justice, where he led the prosecution of Exxon for the Exxon Valdez Oil Spill and the development of the U.S. position on the 1992 Framework Convention on Climate Change. Prior to joining the Justice Department, he taught at the Harvard Law School and Kennedy School of Government for 18 years, and practiced law with the Washington D.C. firm of Covington & Burling. He also served as Special Counsel to the Senate Watergate Committee and as a law clerk to Justice Potter Stewart of the U.S. Supreme Court.  He was formerly Chairman and currently serves as Advisory Trustee of Environmental Defense Fund. Stewart was a Rhodes Scholar, and is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the American Law Institute. He holds honorary degrees from the University of Rome “La Sapienza” and Erasmus University, RotterdamRome “La Sapienza” and Erasmus University, Rotterdam

CRESP Projects

  • Legal and regulatory issues in developing a more risk/hazard informed system of nuclear waste classification and regulation
  • Options for interim consolidated storage of spent nuclear fuel: Legal, policy and regulatory issues

Relevant Publications

Fuel Cycle to Nowhere? Failure and success in U.S. Nuclear Waste law and Policy (forthcoming, 2011) (with J. Stewart)

Solving the US Nuclear Waste Dilemma, Environmental Law and Policy Review (forthcoming 2011)

Breaking the Logjam: Environmental Protection that Will Work (2010)(with D. Schoenbrod and K. Wyman)

U.S. Nuclear Waste Law and Policy: Fixing a Bankrupt System, 17 N.Y.U.L.Rev 783 (2008)

Committee Service

  • November 2010: Presentation to Blue Ribbon Commission on America’s Nuclear Future

Additional Information:

Detailed profile – New York University Law

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