NELMCC 2017: Day 1

by Danny Amaissee

Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University’s National Environmental Law Moot Court Competition (NELMCC) is the largest Environmental Moot Court Competitions in the nation held under one roof. This year’s NELMCC, with 63 teams participating from all over the country, is one of the largest competitions NELMCC has ever held. The teams participating come from as far as Hawaii to compete in this prestigious and highly acclaimed competition. This year’s problem was written by Elisabeth Haub’s very own Professor Karl Coplan, and it involves a very interesting, fun, and complicated problem for the competitors to argue. The problem includes a range of issues from the takings clause, the endangered species act, and the commerce clause.

As the competitors filed in on Thursday morning, the campus was buzzing with excitement, sprinkled with a healthy dose of anxiety. The first day consisted of two preliminary rounds, with three teams arguing in each room. At the end of each round, Judges were asked to select the best oralist. After the third preliminary round is completed on Friday morning, the Judges will select one competitor to be the overall best oralist of the competition, as well as a runner up. Check back for an update on the winners.

Following the end of the second round, the teams and judges were invited to attend a reception in our Tudor Room. At the reception, Professor Coplan thanked everyone for participating, and gave gifts to the Chair of NELMCC, Aris Rotella, as well as Renner Walker, who authored the bench brief for the competition. Additionally, Prof. Coplan recognized a long-time sponsor of NELMCC, GHD, and presented their representative with an award for their 12 years of support. Finally, Prof. Coplan announced the winners of the Best Brief awards. The winner of the overall Best Brief was team number 13, David Sheaffer, Caitlin Brown, and Jacob Simon. The winners of the best brief for Plaintiff, Cordelia Lear, were Haley Chee, Manesh Cleveland, and Kevin Yolken of team number 5. The winners of the best brief for Defendant, Brittain County, were Spencer Newman and Davis Vaughn of team number 8. School names are intentionally omitted to maintain complete anonymity throughout the competition. Check back for updates.

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