2018 Overview

A One-of-a-Kind multi-sector and multi-stakeholder symposium focused on current AND future policy and practice at the INTERSECTION of NATURAL resources and diverse energy, transportation and INDUSTRIAL ACTIVITIES

This two-day meeting is being convened by the Ad-Hoc Industry Natural Resource Management Group (Group) in cooperation with The George Washington University Law School. It is the 11th such symposium convened by the Group over its 30 year history. Other co-sponsors of Symposium 2018 include the Environmental Law Institute, The George Washington University Environmental and Energy Management Institute, and other co-sponsors in formation.

Over the years, these Symposia, which are convened every two to three years, have constituted a unique multi-stakeholder examination of natural resource related policies and practices -- with a strong focus on innovative and cutting-edge approaches. As such, the Symposium is the only continuing national and international forum for multi-stakeholder review and analysis of these policies and practices - notably related to natural resource liability regimes and related issues in the US, Europe and elsewhere. 

The case/site reviews on the first day program is brought to you in cooperation with government, tribal and trade partners participating in the Group's Industry/Trustee Standing Committee including: US Department of Agriculture; US Department of Commerce/National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration; US Department of Defense; US Department of Energy; US Department of the Interior; Peoria Tribe Indians of Oklahoma; American Chemistry Council; American Petroleum Institute; National Association of Manufacturers; National Mining Association; and US Chamber of Commerce. 

While some of the Group's prior Symposia have encompassed an international perspective and speakers from outside the US, this year's Symposium will mainly focus on policies and practices under US laws (CERCLA, OPA, Clean Water Act, state statutes) and analogous laws elsewhere. This will permit a specific set of recommendations to result from the Symposium to be focused on current and near term opportunities for change and innovation. By focusing on better policy for better outcomes, such actions can benefit a diverse set of private sector and public sector stakeholders by conserving, managing and restoring natural resources quickly and efficiently with fairness and transparency.



What to Expect at the 2018 Symposium

The first day of our program will examine the progression and the diversity of natural resource liability cases in the US - via some specific case/site reviews and corresponding lessons learned. We will also discuss emergent case law with the goal of extracting those elements of successful legal, scientific and economic practice that can be further expanded into the present and future.

The second day of the Symposium will hear from leaders and decision-makers and discipline experts from the Congress, Judiciary, Academia, National and State Government, Private Industry, conservation organizations and more, with special emphasis on those actions needed to result in an effective national practice, with associated implications for an effective global practice.

The Symposium will bring together an outstanding set of speakers -- ranging from government policy makers -- to managers responsible for implementing corporate and government policies -- to attorneys, consultants, academics and other experts working in-the-trenches on natural resource matters. The Symposium will provide a unique forum for presentation, discussion and exchange, aimed at identifying what is needed now and moving forward, to ensure a reasonable, balanced, predictable and transparent practice arena for all stakeholders while also facilitating flexibility and innovation.


The Symposium will result in a targeted set of actions - inside and outside statutory and regulatory paradigms - and the establishment of one or more multi-stakeholder working groups to continue the work of the Symposium, namely to further develop ideas and work to effect implementation and establish and monitor metrics to measure success. It is hoped that the proceedings of the conference will be published in a suitable peer-reviewed journal as well.

Who Will Benefit from Participation

The Symposium is open to all parties and we invite participation by the wide spectrum of stakeholder groups engaged in natural resource liability, management, optimization and allied matters, such as emergency response, remediation, restoration, biodiversity, corporate environmental stewardship, sustainability and more. Symposium participants will represent a variety of disciplines interfacing with the natural resource liability and restoration practice field, including law, science, economics, statistics, decision analysis, engineering and more.

Among the persons who will find this program of interest are those with responsibilities for legal, technical, policy, public and regulatory affairs, risk management and financial issues in industrial companies; key government staff at the political appointee, managerial and on the ground levels; key congressional and executive branch members and staff; representatives of think tanks, conservation and research organizations; University professors and students; attorneys, scientists, economists and other specialists working with industry and government on natural resource liability, restoration, optimization and related issues.

Obtain CLE Credit

We are proud that the following States have repeatedly provided CLE credit for our Symposia: Colorado, Illinois, New Jersey, New York, Kansas, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania and Virginia. We are pleased to register the Symposium program for credit in other states upon request. If you would like us to apply for CLE credit in a specific State, indicate this on your registration form or contact us at Symposium@nrdonline.org.

Past symposia

September 25 -26, 2018, The George Washington University Law School, Washington, DC: Blueprint for Change: New Approaches and Needed Changes to Managing Natural Resource Risks, Liabilities and Opportunities – A Multi-Stakeholder Symposium Examining the Law and the Science of Current Practice under US Laws and Ways to Enhance Efficiency, Maximize Benefits, Foster Private/Public Partnerships, Support Innovation and More

  • October 14-15, 2015, Georgetown University, Washington, DC: Natural Resources Symposium: A Multi-Stakeholder Examination of Policies and Practices at the Intersection of Industrial Activities and Natural Resources -- Leveraging Global Synergies and Lessons Learned

  • September 30 - October 1, 2013. The George Washington University, Washington DC: Natural Resources Symposium: "Natural Resource Liability and Optimization Game Changers: Economic Efficiency, Risk Trade Offs, Energy Exploration and Biodiversity”

  • October 25-26, 2011, The George Washington University, Washington, DC: Natural Resource Damages Symposium: "Coming of Age: Time to Set Expectations for Performance, Professional Standards and Best Practices"

  • October 5-6, 2009, ExxonMobil Corporation, Fairfax, VA: Natural Resource Damages Symposium: "The Next Generation of Natural Resource Damage Assessment and Restoration of Constructs and Tools for Identifying and Managing Priorities and Goals

  • July 18-19, 2006: ExxonMobil Corporation, Fairfax, VA: Natural Resource Damages (NRD) Symposium ONRD at 25 Wiser or Just Older? Taking Stock and Shaping the Future: Natural Resource Damage Policy and Practice.

  • November 6-7, 2003, The Intercontinental Willard Hotel, Washington, DC: Annual NRD Symposium for Industry: Industrial Liability for Natural Resource Damages (NRD) under Superfund and Other Environmental Laws

  • May 2-3, 2001, Chevron Corporation, San Ramon, CA: Annual NRD Symposium for Industry: Industrial Liability for Natural Resource Damages (NRD) under Superfund and Other Environmental Laws.

  • April 10-11, 2000, The Dupont Country Club, Wilmington, DE: Annual NRD Symposium for Industry: Industrial Liability for Natural Resource Damages (NRD) under Superfund and Other Environmental Laws

  • April 22, 1999, ExxonMobil Corporation, Houston, TX: NRD Symposium for Industry: Industrial Liability for Natural Resource Damages (NRD) under Superfund and Other Environmental Laws


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