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Joel Reynolds, Western Director, Senior Attorney, Santa Monica, CA

Joel Reynolds

I graduated in 1978 from Columbia Law School, where I was a Stone Scholar and winner of the Convers Prize. Since 1980, following a federal court clerkship, I have specialized in issues of coastal protection, land use, marine mammal protection, nuclear energy, environmental justice, and transportation and have argued cases at all levels of the federal courts, including the U.S. Supreme Court. I have twice been designated California Lawyer of the Year in the environmental category -- 2003 and 2008. Currently, I also serve as Board Chair of the Tejon Ranch Conservancy.

Recent Posts

The Numbers Continue to Crunch the Pebble Mine

Posted October 3, 2014 by Joel Reynolds in Curbing Pollution, Environmental Justice, Green Enterprise, Health and the Environment, Living Sustainably, Moving Beyond Oil, Reviving the World's Oceans, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, Solving Global Warming, The Media and the Environment, U.S. Law and Policy

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Facts – for example, numbers -- have never been a friend to the Pebble Mine.  By now, some of these are familiar to all of us: 10 billion – The number of tons of mining waste laced with toxics that the...continued

Bobby Andrew to EPA: Stop the Pebble Mine

Posted September 15, 2014 by Joel Reynolds in Curbing Pollution, Environmental Justice, Green Enterprise, Health and the Environment, Living Sustainably, Moving Beyond Oil, Nuclear Weapons, Waste and Energy, Reviving the World's Oceans, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, Solving Global Warming, The Media and the Environment, U.S. Law and Policy

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Today we are running the final in a series of ads in Washington, D.C. urging the Obama administration to stop the proposed Pebble Mine. The ads in Politico feature Alaskans from Bristol Bay explaining, in their own words, why it’s...continued

Bristol Bay to EPA: Stop the Pebble Mine Now

Posted September 8, 2014 by Joel Reynolds in Curbing Pollution, Environmental Justice, Green Enterprise, Health and the Environment, Living Sustainably, Moving Beyond Oil, Reviving the World's Oceans, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, Solving Global Warming, The Media and the Environment, U.S. Law and Policy

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This week we’re running a series of ads in Washington, D.C. urging the Obama administration to stop the proposed Pebble Mine. The ads in Politico feature Alaskans from Bristol Bay explaining, in their own words, why it’s essential that EPA...continued

VIDEO: Pebble Mine and the Death Star Mine at Mount Polley

Posted August 18, 2014 by Joel Reynolds in Curbing Pollution, Environmental Justice, Health and the Environment, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, U.S. Law and Policy

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In the wake of the devastating Mt. Polley Mine disaster, and even as the latest tests confirmed elevated levels of toxic copper and lead in aquatic life, a predictable progression is already underway. Within days, the mine owner, the...continued

Now Showing: Pebble Mine's Disastrous Future at BC's Mount Polley Mine

Posted August 7, 2014 by Joel Reynolds in Curbing Pollution, Environmental Justice, Green Enterprise, Health and the Environment, Living Sustainably, Moving Beyond Oil, Reviving the World's Oceans, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, Solving Global Warming, The Media and the Environment, U.S. Law and Policy

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In the early morning of August 4, 2014, a major breach occurred in an earthen dam built to contain millions of tons of mining waste – called “tailings” -- at the Mount Polley copper and gold mine in central...continued

EPA Takes the Next Critical Step Toward Protecting Wild Salmon and Stopping the Massive Pebble Mine

Posted July 18, 2014 by Joel Reynolds in Curbing Pollution, Environmental Justice, Green Enterprise, Health and the Environment, Living Sustainably, Moving Beyond Oil, Nuclear Weapons, Waste and Energy, Reviving the World's Oceans, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, Solving Global Warming, The Media and the Environment, U.S. Law and Policy

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Today the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency formally proposed limitations that would block the massive, ill-conceived Pebble Mine project -- the controversial proposal to mine gold and copper at the headwaters of the pristine Bristol Bay wild salmon fishery in Alaska that faces...continued

Blue Whales, Collateral Damage, and the U.S. Navy's Avoidable War on Whales

Posted July 1, 2014 by Joel Reynolds in Living Sustainably, Reviving the World's Oceans, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, U.S. Law and Policy

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Today is the publication date for Joshua Horwitz’ War of the Whales, a true story brilliantly told about the U.S. Navy’s decades-long war on whales and other marine mammals by its reckless use of high intensity active sonar. The book...continued

Pacific Coast Trail Begins Move to the High Country of Tejon Ranch

Posted May 8, 2014 by Joel Reynolds in Curbing Pollution, Environmental Justice, Green Enterprise, Health and the Environment, Living Sustainably, Moving Beyond Oil, Reviving the World's Oceans, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, Solving Global Warming, The Media and the Environment, U.S. Law and Policy

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When the 2,650 mile Pacific Crest Trail was envisioned in the 1930’s, it was to traverse the highest points along the West Coast’s mountainous spine between Mexico and Canada, revealing the majestic vistas and extraordinary natural riches that characterize the...continued

Pebble Mine: Delivering Congratulations, Not Petitions, to Rio Tinto

Posted April 21, 2014 by Joel Reynolds in Curbing Pollution, Environmental Justice, Green Enterprise, Health and the Environment, Living Sustainably, Moving Beyond Oil, Reviving the World's Oceans, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, Solving Global Warming, The Media and the Environment, U.S. Law and Policy

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Compared to our meetings in 2011, 2012, and 2013, this year’s meeting in London with Rio Tinto’s leadership about the proposed Pebble Mine had a very different feel.   Earlier in the week, after four years of discussions with NRDC and...continued

Thank You Rio Tinto: British Mining Giant Divests from Pebble Mine, Gives its Stake in the Project to Alaska Charities

Posted April 7, 2014 by Joel Reynolds in Saving Wildlife and Wild Places

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Rio Tinto, one of the largest mining companies in the world, announced today that it is abandoning once and for all the giant Pebble Mine proposed for the Bristol Bay region of southwest Alaska.  Potentially the largest copper and gold...continued

A Gem of an Ad: Tiffany's Applauds EPA for Action On Pebble Mine

Posted March 6, 2014 by Joel Reynolds in Curbing Pollution, Environmental Justice, Green Enterprise, Health and the Environment, Living Sustainably, Moving Beyond Oil, Reviving the World's Oceans, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, Solving Global Warming, The Media and the Environment, U.S. Law and Policy

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Readers of the Washington Post, Seattle Times, and SanFranciscoChronicle awoke this morning to a full-page ad from Tiffany & Company congratulating the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.  The reason?  Last week EPA announced that it was initiating a public process to...continued

EPA Makes the Right Move for Bristol Bay, Starts 404(c) Process on Pebble Mine

Posted February 28, 2014 by Joel Reynolds in Curbing Pollution, Environmental Justice, Green Enterprise, Health and the Environment, Living Sustainably, Moving Beyond Oil, Nuclear Weapons, Waste and Energy, Reviving the World's Oceans, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, Solving Global Warming, The Media and the Environment, U.S. Law and Policy

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Today the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency took the first regulatory step toward securing a healthy future for Bristol Bay.         Photograph © 2014 Robert Glenn Ketchum Responding to overwhelming public demand for the protection of Bristol Bay from the proposed...continued

Unprecedented Coalition in Washington, D.C. Next Week Urging EPA to Protect Bristol Bay, Alaska

Posted February 20, 2014 by Joel Reynolds in Curbing Pollution, Environmental Justice, Green Enterprise, Health and the Environment, Living Sustainably, Moving Beyond Oil, Nuclear Weapons, Waste and Energy, Reviving the World's Oceans, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, Solving Global Warming, The Media and the Environment, U.S. Law and Policy

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Next week NRDC will join leaders from an unprecedented coalition of Alaska Natives, commercial fishermen, sportsmen, business owners, and faith leaders converging in D.C. and calling on EPA to use its authority under the Clean Water Act to protect Bristol...continued

Submarines, Sonar, and the Death of Whales: NRDC Goes Back to Court Against Dangerous Navy Sonar

Posted January 27, 2014 by Joel Reynolds in Reviving the World's Oceans, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places

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There’s an old adage that the environment is never saved—just continually being saved.  And the U.S. Navy’s testing and training with high intensity active sonar is a perfect example. When it comes to the next five years of training and...continued

Alaska's U.S. Senator Begich Opposes Pebble Mine: "Wrong Mine, Wrong Place"

Posted January 21, 2014 by Joel Reynolds in Environmental Justice, Saving Wildlife and Wild Places, U.S. Law and Policy

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Relying on the comprehensive Watershed Assessment completed last week by EPA, Alaska U.S. Senator Mark Begich announced on Sunday that he is opposed to development of the Pebble Mine.  “Wrong mine, wrong place . . . Too many potential long-term impacts...continued

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Switchboard is the staff blog of the Natural Resources Defense Council, the nation’s most effective environmental group. For more about our work, including in-depth policy documents, action alerts and ways you can contribute, visit NRDC.org.

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