The Most Famous Environmental Lawyer, Ranked

Choose the environmental lawyer you think is the most famous!

Author: Gregor Krambs
Updated on Jun 21, 2024 07:41
Environmental issues are at the forefront of global concern, affecting policies, economies, and daily lives. Lawyers specializing in this field play critical roles in shaping laws that protect natural resources and the communities that depend on them. Assessing who excels in this arena is not just about fame but also about gauging influence and effectiveness in advocacy and legal battles. This dynamic list represents a public opinion-driven ranking of top environmental lawyers. It serves as a tool for recognizing the contributions of these professionals in steering significant environmental policies and actions. Your participation through voting enhances the credibility of the rankings and helps highlight those making substantive changes in this crucial sector.

Who Is the Most Famous Environmental Lawyer?

  1. 1

    Robert F. Kennedy Jr.

    An American environmental attorney, author, and activist. Kennedy serves as president of Waterkeeper Alliance, a non-profit environmental group.
    • Notable Work: Waterkeeper Alliance
  2. 2

    James Thornton

    Founder of ClientEarth, a nonprofit environmental law organization.
    • Notable Work: ClientEarth
  3. 3

    Steven Donziger

    American attorney known for his legal battles with Chevron Corporation over environmental damage and indigenous rights in Ecuador.
    • Notable Work: Legal battle with Chevron Corporation
  4. 4

    Antonio Oposa Jr.

    A Filipino environmental lawyer known for his use of legal activism to protect the environment in the Philippines, including a landmark case to protect Manila Bay.
    • Notable Work: Legal activism for environmental protection in the Philippines
  5. 5

    Polly Higgins

    A British lawyer who campaigned for the Earth to be recognized as a legal entity and for ecocide to become a crime.
    • Notable Work: Campaign for the recognition of ecocide
  6. 6

    Michelle Maloney

    Co-founder and National Convenor of the Australian Earth Laws Alliance, advocating for the rights of nature and earth jurisprudence.
    • Notable Work: Australian Earth Laws Alliance
  7. 7

    M.C. Mehta

    A prominent Indian environmental attorney who has won several landmark judgments from the Indian Supreme Court on environmental protection.
    • Notable Work: Landmark environmental cases in India
  8. 8

    Lois Gibbs

    An environmental health activist who played a key role in the discovery of the toxic waste crisis in Love Canal, New York, and is also a notable figure in environmental law.
    • Notable Work: Advocacy on Love Canal toxic waste crisis
  9. 9

    Gustavo Alanis-Ortega

    Mexican environmental lawyer and founder of the Mexican Environmental Law Center (CEMDA).
    • Notable Work: Mexican Environmental Law Center (CEMDA)
  10. 10

    Julia Olson

    Founder and executive director of Our Children's Trust, a nonprofit advocating for young people in the fight against climate change.
    • Notable Work: Our Children's Trust

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About this ranking

This is a community-based ranking of the most famous environmental lawyer. We do our best to provide fair voting, but it is not intended to be exhaustive. So if you notice something or environmentalist is missing, feel free to help improve the ranking!


  • 50 votes
  • 10 ranked items

Voting Rules

A participant may cast an up or down vote for each environmentalist once every 24 hours. The rank of each environmentalist is then calculated from the weighted sum of all up and down votes.


Additional Information

More about the Most Famous Environmental Lawyer

Robert F. Kennedy Jr.
Rank #1 for the most famous environmental lawyer: Robert F. Kennedy Jr. (Source)
Environmental lawyers play a key role in protecting the planet. They focus on laws that safeguard natural resources, public health, and ecosystems. Their work includes ensuring companies follow regulations, advocating for stronger laws, and representing groups or individuals in court.

These lawyers often start with a passion for nature. Many study environmental science or a related field before law school. This background helps them understand complex issues. They learn about pollution, wildlife protection, and land use. This knowledge is crucial for their future work.

Once in law school, they take courses in environmental law. They learn about key legislation, such as the Clean Air Act and the Clean Water Act. They also study international treaties that address global issues like climate change. Internships with environmental organizations provide practical experience. These internships often involve research, writing briefs, and sometimes participating in court cases.

After law school, they may work for government agencies, non-profits, or private firms. Government agencies enforce environmental regulations. Non-profits often focus on advocacy and public education. Private firms may represent businesses, but some also represent environmental groups or individuals.

Their work involves many tasks. They might draft new regulations or challenge existing ones. They often participate in public hearings and provide comments on proposed laws. In court, they argue cases that can set important precedents. These cases can involve a range of issues, from industrial pollution to wildlife conservation.

One major part of their job is litigation. They might sue companies that violate environmental laws. They also defend regulations that are challenged in court. Winning these cases can lead to cleaner air, safer water, and protected habitats. These victories can have a lasting impact on public health and the environment.

They also work on policy. They advise lawmakers on crafting effective laws. They might help draft legislation or provide expert testimony. This work ensures that new laws are based on sound science and can withstand legal challenges.

Public education is another important aspect. They often speak at conferences and write articles. They aim to raise awareness about environmental issues and the importance of strong laws. This helps build public support for their work.

Their job is not easy. Environmental issues are complex and often involve competing interests. They must understand science, law, and policy. They need strong analytical skills to build convincing arguments. They also need to communicate clearly with clients, judges, and the public.

Despite the challenges, their work is rewarding. They make a tangible difference in protecting the planet. Their efforts lead to cleaner air and water, preserved natural spaces, and healthier communities. They help ensure that future generations can enjoy a healthy environment.

In summary, environmental lawyers are crucial in the fight to protect our planet. They combine a passion for nature with legal expertise. Their work involves litigation, policy, and public education. Despite the challenges, they make a significant impact. Their efforts lead to lasting benefits for the environment and public health.

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