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Shooting Stars and Dancing Fish (WP)

News Story

Antonio A. Oposa Jr., one of Asia’s leading voices in environmental law, will give his keynote address as Distinguished International Environmental Scholar-in-Residence at the Kerlin Lecture on October 1.

On Wednesday, October 1, at 5:00 p.m. in the Gerber Glass Moot Court Room at Pace Law School, Distinguished International Environmental Scholar-in-Residence Antonio A. Oposa Jr. 
will present “Shooting Stars and Dancing Fish” at the annual Gilbert and Sarah Kerlin Lecture on Environmental Law.

One of Asia’s leading voices in the global arena of environmental law, Oposa has had a remarkable career as a creative litigator, organizer, and activist.

In 1993, he made headlines worldwide for his role in the landmark case Oposa v. Factoran, where the Philippine Supreme Court held that a group of minors had the right to sue on behalf of succeeding generations because every generation has a responsibility to the next to preserve nature. Oposa was counsel for 43 Filipino children who initiated an action against the Philippine government for the misappropriation of the country's forest resources. The trial court dismissed the complaint on the ground of lack of legal personality to sue. In a widely-noted case on inter-generational responsibility, the Philippine Supreme Court upheld the legal standing and the right of the children to initiate the action on their behalf and on behalf of generations yet unborn. It is now known in Philippine and global jurisprudence as the "Oposa Doctrine."

Oposa was awarded the highest United Nations honor in the field of environment in 1997: the UNEP Global 500 Roll of Honor. He also received the Philippines' "Outstanding Young Man Award" in 1993 for his work in public interest environmental law. He is the only Asian to receive the International Environmental Law Award from the Washington, D.C.-based Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL). In July 2013, Oposa was appointed as Distinguished Visiting Scholar for International Environmental Law at Vermont Law School and in 2014, he served as Visiting Lecturer at the University of Hawaii William S. Richardson School of Law.

An outstanding advocate in international law, Oposa is the author of numerous publications, articles, and books. Among them are two internationally acclaimed books The Laws of Nature and Other Stories and an authoritative compendium on Environmental Law entitled A Legal Arsenal for the Philippines Environment.

The annual Gilbert and Sarah Kerlin Lecture on Environmental Law, established nearly 15 years ago, brings top scholars and attorneys to Pace Law School to speak on key environmental legal topics.

RSVP to Leslie Crincoli at For more information, click here.