Mark S. Davis


Few aspects of life will be spared disruptions attributed to climate change,

but those disruptions will not be evenly distributed or borne. While much

attention is being given to large-scale plans and programs aimed at effectively

and equitably coping with those disruptions, the fact is the burdens and

responsibility of planning and acting are falling mostly on individual families,

businesses, and communities. Those with access to resources and professional

assistance, specifically legal services, will stand a better chance of

adapting and prospering. Those without will likely fare worse—and already

are. In order to get better and more equitable outcomes, it will be necessary

to appreciate the wide range of legal issues, rights, and responsibilities that

adapting to climate change raises and respond to them with robust legal services.

The American legal profession is not presently ready to meet that challenge.