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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 93477 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Potential of Mediation for Resolving Environmental Disputes Related to Energy Facilities
Corporate Author: American Management Systems, Inc.
United States of America
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 111
Sponsoring Agency: American Management Systems, Inc.
Arlington, VA 22209
National Technical Information Service
Springfield, VA 22151
US Dept of Energy
Washington, DC 20585
Contract Number: DE-AC02-79EV10274
Sale Source: National Technical Information Service
US Dept of Commerce
5285 Port Royal Road
Springfield, VA 22151
United States of America
Document: PDF
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study assesses the potential of mediation as a tool for resolving disputes related to permitting new energy facilities and explores possible Federal Government roles in stimulating the use of issues; These disputes frequently result when parties challenge the siting or modification of an energy facility on the basis of its potential environmental impact.
Abstract: Mediation has the potential for achieving quicker and more satisfactory solutions for certain energy-facility disputes than the court system. Mediation also can lead to compromise and to discussion of genuine issues; it can accommodate numerous parties and issues efficiently. Mediation does have limitations, however. It does not guarantee an agreement, although it may at least clarify issues dividing the parties. Mediation also has a limited ability to set legally binding precedents for future disputes. Finally, mediation is likely to be successful only for disputes involving how national or local energy/environmental policy is to be implemented for a specific facility in a specific locality. Disputes involving national policy are generally unsuitable for mediation because of the difficulty of implementing an agreement at the local level. Differences in fundamental local policy are not suitable for mediation because they generally lack room for compromise. Environmental groups are generally receptive to participation in mediation efforts, if certain basic conditions are met regarding resource requirements and procedures. Environmental groups would need financial assistance, but in a fashion that would preserve their independence and the impartiality of the mediator. Good faith bargaining by all parties and confidential proceedings are also among the conditions they generally desire. If the Federal Government elects to promote wider use of mediation, it could provide impartial funding through a coalition of agencies. Possible avenues for support would be the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service, a Federal services ombudsman, training and licensing of environmental mediators, pilot mediation projects, education services, and direct technical/analytical assistance. Notes and exhibits accompany the text. The appendixes discuss the activities of several mediation institutions and present additional information sources. (Author summary modified)
Index Term(s): Environmental laws; Federal Code; Mediation; Municipal ordinances
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