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Michael C. Blumm

Jeffrey Bain Scholar & Professor of Law, Lewis & Clark

Professor Blumm is one of the architects of the Law School’s acclaimed Environmental and Natural Resources Law Program. He has been teaching, writing, and practicing in the environmental and natural resources law field for thirty-five years. He came to the law school after practicing with an environmental group and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, D.C., where he helped draft the EPA’s first wetland protection regulations. Blumm’s chief interests are in the restoration of the Pacific Northwest salmon runs, the preservation of the West’s public lands and waters, the management of natural resources by Indian tribes, the modern use of the public trust doctrine, and governmental authority to regulate private property for public purposes.

Professor Blumm was instrumental in the founding of the Law School’s pioneering Externship Program, which began in 1979 as part of the environmental law program and over the years has expanded to include all legal subjects. The Externship Program has sponsored over 600 students who spend a semester gaining practical experience working for government agencies, non-profit organizations, and law firms.

For over a decade during the 1980s, Blumm edited the Natural Resources Law Institute’s Anadromous Fish Law Memo. He then spent seven years during the 1990s co-directing the Northwest Water Law and Policy Project. He has co-authored casebooks on Natural Resources Law, Public Trust Law, and Native American Natural Resources Law.

Blumm is a prolific scholar, with well over one-hundred published articles, book chapters, and monographs on salmon, water, public lands, wetlands, environmental impact assessment, public trust law, and constitutional takings law, to name just a few topics. Much of his scholarship includes student co-authors. He also regularly helps students publish on their own. For example, over twenty of his students have authored state analyses in a comprehensive study of the public trust doctrine in the American states.

Blumm was visiting professor at the University of Melbourne in 1988, Fulbright Professor at the University of Athens in 1991, and visiting professor at the University of California-Berkeley in 2004. He has lectured on a variety of topics as visiting professor in in law schools in Australia, Canada, Greece, and Brazil, and has been distinguished visitor at Florida State University, the University of Calgary, Vermont Law School, and several Australian law schools. In 2005-07, he was Chair of the American Association of Law School’s Natural Resources Law Section.


  • –present
    Jeffrey Bain Scholar & Professor of Law, Lewis and Clark Law School


  • 1979 
    George Washington University, LL.M.