Recent research in brain biochemistry examining the likely neurological effects of exposure to toxic contaminants continues to demand legal consideration. In this Article, Professor Crawford evaluates the possible consequences of recent neurobiological studies-labeled "The Neurotoxicity Hypothesis" by researchers-for lawyers and the legal system. After summarizing the research, Professor Crawford suggests that as this (or similar) neurobiological research gains increased scientific acceptance, it will be necessary to reduce dramatically the acceptable levels of these toxic elements that can be discharged into the environment. He then examines the implications of such a result for establishing criminal liability under federal environmental statutes, focusing on the criminal liability provisions of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act.
Criminal Penalities for Creating a Toxic Environment: Mens Rea, Environmental Criminal Liability Standards, and the Neurotoxicity Hypothesis,
B.C. Envtl. Aff. L. Rev.