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The Plight of Climate Refugees: Rising Seas, Melting Ice, and Inadequate Legal Frameworks

The Plight of Climate Refugees: Rising Seas, Melting Ice, and Inadequate Legal Frameworks


The TCNJ Prelaw Progarm presents

The Second Annual Daryl Fair Memorial Lecture

The Plight of Climate Refugees: Rising Seas, Melting Ice, and Inadequate Legal Frameworks

with Randall S. Abate, Assistant Dean for Environmental Law Studies,
The George Washington University Law School

Tuesday, March 5, 2024 at 12:30pm in ED 212

Reception to follow

Dean Randall Abate

Climate change impacts continue to displace vulnerable communities around the world with increasing frequency and intensity. Existing domestic and international legal frameworks are inadequate to confront the unfolding global climate change displacement crisis. The global community needs to bridge the divide between international environmental law and international human rights law frameworks to address this pressing issue at the forefront of global climate change adaptation and resilience. Climate displacement case studies within and outside the U.S. will be examined to expose the gaps in the legal frameworks and explore possible solutions.


Randall S. Abate joined GW Law in July 2022 as the Assistant Dean for Environmental Law Studies. He brings 28 years of experience teaching, writing, managing programs, and mentoring students on domestic and international environmental law issues in various contexts.

Prior to coming to GW Law, from 2018-2022, Dean Abate served as the inaugural Rechnitz Family and Urban Coast Institute Endowed Chair in Marine and Environmental Law and Policy and a Professor in the Department of Political Science and Sociology at Monmouth University in West Long Branch, New Jersey. Prior to Monmouth, Professor Abate was a full-time faculty member at six U.S. law schools. Throughout his academic career, Dean Abate has taught courses in domestic and international environmental law, climate change law and justice, ocean and coastal law, constitutional law, torts, and animal law. 

Dean Abate has published six books and more than thirty law journal articles and book chapters on environmental and animal law topics, with a recent emphasis on climate change law and justice. Early in his career, Professor Abate handled environmental law matters at two law firms in Manhattan.


Daryl FairThe Memorial Lecture honors the memory of Dr. Daryl Fair, who devoted 44 years of his professional career to The College of New Jersey, forming the Prelaw Advisory Committee and the Prelaw Society. Thanks to Dr. Fair’s lasting legacy, the TCNJ Prelaw Program has and continues to support generations of students.