March 2, 2020

After days of deliberation, the Conference Co-Directors have made the truly heartbreaking decision to cancel the 38th annual Public Interest Environmental Law Conference, which was scheduled to take place March 5-8, 2020. We do not take this decision lightly. The rapidly developing situation with COVID-19 in the Pacific Northwest demanded a cautious response to protect the public welfare. 

This was obviously a very tough decision, as we were looking forward to hosting everyone in Eugene. We apologize for the inconvenience this will cause in your travel plans. If you are a panelist or travel stipend recipient, we will reach out to you individually shortly. If you registered for CLE credits, we are looking into video recording options to fulfill your CLE requirements or refunds. We will also pursue options to preserve some of the other scheduled content via video recording and provide this online at a later date. Additionally, we are available for questions at

The Indigenous People‚Äôs Reception and Alumni Reception hosted by the Environmental and Natural Resources Center, both large events with food service, have been cancelled independently. 

Thank you all for your continued dedication, support, and tremendous effort in putting together PIELC 2020. We could not do it without each and every one of you. We look forward to seeing the whole PIELC community in 2021.

The PIELC 2020 Keynoters

PIELC 2020 David Brower Lifetime Achievement Award Recipient

PIELC 2020 – Move: Migration on a Changing Planet

We are pleased to release our finalized schedule for panels, keynote addresses, and special events to occur at this year’s Public Interest Environmental Law Conference. PIELC 2020 will be held March 5-8, 2020 at the University of Oregon School of Law.

Over the last 38 years, the Public Interest Environmental Law Conference has brought together thousands of activists, students, and professionals, from a diverse array of communities and cultures, to advance efforts for environmental and social justice. The 2020 conference is no exception. 

One of the main goals for PIELC 2020 is to provide a space that enables growth beyond the four-day conference. We are committed to facilitating discussions, workshops, and panels that give participants the tools and knowledge they can apply beyond this special conference. We believe that change is possible and that it comes in many forms, including but not limited to changes in the legislature and in policy both at local and global levels. We further believe that change starts with each individual making a conscious effort to better their local community resulting in a nation-wide ripple effect.