June 4, 2019 —University of Houston Law Center student Danielle Lam recently investigated pathways to promote the development of offshore wind energy in Texas for lecturer Tracy Hester’s environmental practicum course.
“I think promoting renewable energy has a positive effect on the environment, our energy security, and our economy,” Lam said. “Our energy demands are increasing and I hope that we can rely on renewable energy to meet those new demands rather than traditional fuel sources.”
Lam, who will begin her 3L year in the fall, was eager to take the class because it was an opportunity for her to explore the intersection of law and alternate energy sources and to improve her legal skills. Part of her research included attending UH Energy's symposium, "Offshore Wind: Will it Happen in Texas?" and a Greater Houston Partnership Sustainability Advisory Committee meeting.
“I wanted to take Professor Hester's practicum course because it gives students the opportunity to work with clients and do projects for them,” she said. “I'm also very interested in renewable energy so I thought an environmental law course would be interesting.”
Although onshore wind energy has been implemented in Texas, Lam feels that utilizing offshore wind to help stabilize wind power in Texas is an option that should not be ignored.
“So far, Texas has done a great job expanding its onshore wind capacity, but onshore wind has its limitations,” she said. “Offshore winds are generally more consistent in speed and direction, so they can offer a steadier supply of power.”
In her future practice, Lam wants to focus on energy regulation or electricity.
“I'm interested in learning more about the laws that affect the renewable energy industry, which includes environmental law,” Lam said.
While at the Law Center, Lam has worked on the Houston Journal of International Law
and will be a senior articles editor next year; she was also secretary of the Asian Law Students Association for the 2018-19 academic year.
Aside from classes like Landlord Tenant Lab and the environmental practicum course, Lam has also enjoyed Administrative Law and Business Organizations.
“I think those subjects are very interesting and I've had great professors,” Lam said.