The Questions that Should be Asked: Environment, Energy, and Natural Resources in the Presidential Race

Event Date: 
April 16, 2012


Co-sponsored by the Society of Environmental Journalists
and the Environmental Law Institute

WHEN: April 16, 2012, 5:30 PM to 7:00 PM

WHERE: Murrow Room, National Press Club, 529 14th Street NW, Washington, DC. Click here for directions.

RSVP: To reserve, e-mail Please reserve by April 10. There is no charge to attend, but you must RSVP. RSVPs should include: name of registrant, affiliation, and email address. A cash bar will be available.

Although environmental, energy, and natural resource policies have seldom figured prominently in a presidential election, such policies have a direct effect on issues that do feature prominently in presidential elections. For example, energy policy alone affects public health, foreign policy, and the domestic economy. As a companion to our Environmental Forum article which surveyed 12 major figures on what topics should be discussed in the presidential debates, we’ve invited five experts with broad policy experience to discuss their answers to two key questions. First: "What should the presidential candidates discuss concerning the important issues of environment, energy, and natural resources facing the people of the United States?" Second: "What questions should be asked of candidates in the presidential debates that will help us learn how they will confront these issues?" Please note:  this discussion is designed solely to frame the questions—not to answer them.

Please join us for a lively discussion in anticipation of the next presidential election.


  • Dina Cappiello, National Environment Reporter, Associated Press (moderator)
  • John Cruden, President, Environmental Law Institute
  • Bob Deans, Associate Director of Communications, Natural Resources Defense Council
  • E. Donald Elliott, Professor (Adjunct) of Law, Yale Law School
  • Kenneth P. Green, Resident Scholar, American Enterprise Institute
  • Jacqui Patterson, Director, Environmental and Climate Justice Program, NAACP  


SEJ is the only US-based organization of professional journalists, students and educators working to advance public understanding of environmental issues through credible and robust environmental journalism. With more than 1,400 members in the US and 27 other countries, SEJ is independent and nonpartisan. For more information see


The Environmental Law Institute strengthens environmental protection through improving law and governance worldwide. ELI delivers timely, insightful, impartial analysis to opinion makers, including government official, environmental and business leaders and journalists. ELI is a clearinghouse and a town hall, providing common ground for debate on important environmental issues.



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