The 32nd Annual Red Clay Conference, titled “Overcoming Toxic Relationships,” addressed coal ash disposal, brownfield redevelopment in Georgia and per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in drinking water.

The Peter Appel Lecture was delivered by environmental activist Lois Gibbs, who is known for her work with New York’s Love Canal. Her efforts led to the creation of the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act, also known as Superfund. Administered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, this fund is used “to clean up uncontrolled or abandoned hazardous-waste sites as well as accidents, spills, and other emergency releases of pollutants and contaminants.” Gibbs is the founder and executive director of the Center for Health, Environment, and Justice (formerly known as the Clearinghouse for Hazardous Waste) that trains and supports local activists with efforts to combat environmental crises in their communities.

Organized by law students who are members of Environmental Law Association, the Red Clay Conference aims to increase public awareness of environmental issues of regional, national and international significance through a series of educational presentations and open forum discussions. This event was associated with UGA’s Earth Day 50th Anniversary Celebration.


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Friday, February 21st
9:00 AM

Opening Remarks

Peter B. Rutledge, University of Georgia Law School

Larry Walker Room, Rusk Hall

9:00 AM - 9:45 AM

9:45 AM

What’s up with Coal Ash?

Chris Bowers, Southern Environmental Law Center
Mike Conner, The Conner Law Group
Travis Glenn, University of Georgia

Larry Walker Room, Rusk Hall

9:45 AM - 10:50 AM

10:55 AM

Happy Birthday Superfund! (Brownfield Redevelopment)

Jennifer Lewis, University of Georgia, Center for Community Design and Preservation
Gerald Pouncey Jr., Morris, Manning and Martin, LLP
Shannon Ridley, Georgia Environmental Protection Division

Larry Walker Room, Rusk Hall

10:55 AM - 12:00 PM

12:15 PM

Bonus Presentation (NEPA and Chattahoochee National Forest)

Jess Riddle, Georgia Forest Watch

Larry Walker Room, Rusk Hall

12:15 PM - 12:30 PM

12:45 PM


Robert Bringolf, University of Georgia
Mark Garvey, Environmental Protection Agency
Ryan Kral, Beasley Allen Law Firm

Larry Walker Room, Rusk Hall

12:45 PM - 2:00 PM

2:10 PM

Peter Appel Honorary Keynote Address

Laurie Fowler, University of Georgia School of Law
Lois Gibbs, Center for Health, Environment and Justice

Larry Walker Room, Rusk Hall

2:10 PM - 3:20 PM