Associate Dean, Distinguished Professor of Law, and Co-Director of the Center for Law and Energy Resources in the Rockies Sam Kalen got on the phone with Jon Wainwright to talk about some of the clinical opportunities for law students at University of Wyoming, interstate power grids and how those can be created without preempting federal law, NEPA and efforts to curtail some of its impact.

On the podcast, we talk about our favorite public lands, some of the great clinic opportunities afforded to University of Wyoming Law students who get involved in the university’s Center for Law and Energy Resources, how states can build out interstate grids without running afoul of federal law and regulations or running headlong in to preemption issues, and explore the National Environmental Policy Act.

To learn more about Dean Kalen, you can visit his University of Wyoming College of Law faculty page or his publications page. You can also learn more about University of Wyoming College of Law’s Center for Law and Energy Resources in the Rockies here. And lastly, if you are interested in reading Dean Kalen’s book on energy policy, you can ask your local bookseller for Energy Follies: Missteps, Fiascos, and Successes of America’s Energy Policy or find it online on sites like this one.

And as always, you can listen to today’s conversation on Apple Podcasts, iTunes, Stitcher Radio, or wherever else you listen to podcasts.

To help more people hear this week’s conversation, please subscribe to The CAP⋅impact Podcast on any of those services and leave a 5-star rating and a positive review. That makes it easier for the show to be found which in turn makes it easier for people to learn about the work that Dean Kalen and the rest of the faculty at University of Wyoming College of Law is doing.


Today’s post is on AB 1804, which creates a new CEQA exemption for housing projects.

The new law provides a statutory exception from California’s Environmental Quality Act – CEQA – for infill development, residential and mixed‑use housing projects that occur within an unincorporated area of a county.

Essentially, CEQA requires a lead agency to prepare or cause to be prepared and certify a completion of an environment impact report on a project that it proposes to carry out or approve that may have a significant effect on the environment, or to adopt a negative declaration if it finds that the project will not have that effect.

Assembly Bill 1804 exempts from CEQA, only until January 1, 2025, residential or mixed‑use housing projects that are located in unincorporated areas of a county meeting certain requirements. The lead agency must file a Notice of Exemption with the Office of Planning and Research and the county clerk in the county in which that project is located.

Now, there are a number of different requirements for that residential or mixed‑use housing project to meet. The new CEQA exception only applies if all of these conditions that are described in this new code section are met. Once all those provisions are met, then the CEQA exemption applies.

You’ll have to take a look at Section 21159.25 of California’s Public Resources Code to read all of the different conditions that must be met.

You can find a transcript of today’s podcast here.