The Environment and Natural Resources Division (“ENRD”) is the Nation’s environmental lawyer and the largest environmental law firm in the world. It is responsible for litigation at the frontiers of the law, ranging from protection of endangered species, to global climate change, to cleaning up the nation’s hazardous waste sites. Over one-half of ENRD’s lawyers are involved in enforcing the nation’s civil and criminal environmental laws in order to protect the health and environment of citizens of the United States. ENRD also defends environmental challenges to government programs and activities. It represents the U.S. in all matters concerning the protection, use, and development of the nation’s natural resources and public lands, wildlife protection, Native American rights and claims, and the acquisition of Federal property. Many of these cases are precedent-setting.
The Sacramento Field Office (“SFO”) is comprised of attorneys representing ENRD’s Natural Resources Section (“NRS”). NRS is responsible for litigation involving the nation’s national forests and parks, other federally-owned public lands, and natural resources including water resources. NRS defends challenges brought by industry and environmental groups on issues including maintaining public lands such as national parks and forests, defending specific agency decisions regarding the use of natural resources, and litigating whether regulatory programs and actions are takings under the Fifth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. A significant portion of the dockets of SFO attorneys involve litigation over federal water management decisions in California and elsewhere in the West, Fifth Amendment takings litigation, and challenges to federal agency decisions under the National Environmental Policy Act.
ENRD’s Sacramento Field Office is seeking law students with a strong interest in gaining practical experience in environmental law and litigation. Law clerks are called upon to conduct legal research on a variety of issues ranging from environmental law to federal practice and procedure, and evidence. In planning assignments, our attorneys make every effort to provide each student with challenging work in as many areas of our practice as possible. Clerks typically research and draft legal memoranda and briefs, prepare written discovery, present oral reports on shorter research assignments, and attend planning sessions with client agency counsel and technical experts. Clerks may also attend or assist with site visits, witness interviews, depositions, settlement conferences, and hearings taking place in Sacramento, Fresno, Oakland, or San Francisco.
Student applicants must (1) hold full or dual United States citizenship, to be identified in the cover letter; (2) have resided within the United States for three of the past five years, unless military/diplomatic service was involved; (3) be in good standing at their law school, with a strong interest in gaining practical experience in environmental law; (4) complete a minimum of two semesters of law school, with successful completion of at least one introductory environmental law course; and (5) work full-time in the summer over a period of 10 weeks, or a minimum of 16 hours per week during the fall or spring semesters over a period of 14 weeks. First-year law students, who have not completed their first semester, may only apply after December 1.
Email cover letter, which MUST identify the applicant’s country or countries of citizenship, resume, unofficial transcript, and a recent legal writing sample (max. 12 pp.); consolidate these documents in to single, unlocked .pdf file to Machaela Melrose at email@example.com.
The Sacramento Field Office is currently accepting applications for 2018 spring law clerk positions through November 30, 2018.
Hiring is made on a rolling basis. Therefore, please identify the term(s) to which you are applying on your cover letter.