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Staff Attorney-Climate Law Institute 

About the Organization At the Center for Biological Diversity, we believe that the welfare of human beings is deeply linked to nature - to the existence in our world of a vast diversity of wild animals and plants. Because diversity has intrinsic value, and because its loss impoverishes society, we work to secure a future for all species, great and small, hovering on the brink of extinction. We do so through science, law and creative media, with a focus on protecting the lands, waters and climate that species need to survive.

We want those who come after us to inherit a world where the wild is still alive!  

The Center for Biological Diversity seeks a full-time Staff Attorney in our Climate Law Institute to advance the urgently needed transition from fossil fuel vehicles to zero emissions transportation in California.

This position is located in Oakland, Los Angeles, or Sacramento California.

Main Duties: The Climate Law Institute wages innovative legal and grassroots campaigns to protect people, wildlife and ecosystems from climate change and the dirty and dangerous fossil fuel industry. We work to eliminate greenhouse pollution and speed the just transition to 100 percent clean, renewable energy. With transportation as the largest contributing sector of greenhouse gas emissions in California and nation-wide, we have no time to lose to transition the country away from fossil fuel vehicles. We seek an experienced attorney to join our team in waging a bold and progressive campaign to phase out fossil fuel transportation in California through litigation, policy, campaign, and media efforts.

Main duties:

  • Litigate cutting-edge transportation cases.
  • Work within our team to design and promote strong-state level policies to phase out dirty fossil fuel transportation in California, and strategies to achieve those policies.
  • Publicly advocate for strong clean transportation policies in a variety of contexts, from legislative and administrative hearings to meetings with regulators.
  • Conduct policy and legal research on clean transportation and renewables infrastructure, including drawing from international work.
  • Work closely with partners engaged in the clean vehicles and fossil fuel phase-out space to advance our shared priorities. Help build an intersectional coalition that supports these top political priorities.
  • Prepare communications including press releases, op-eds, fact sheets, and white papers.
  • Travel required.

Salary Range:

  • Staff Attorney: $52,000-$75,000 DOE;
  • Senior Attorney: $75,000-$100,000 DOE.

Benefits Package:

  • Paid generous medical, dental and vision plan.
  • Paid STD and LTD.
  • 403(b) plan with opportunity for match.
  • Relaxed work atmosphere.

Application process: Please apply online at by submitting a cover letter, resume, writing sample and 3-5 references with your application. The position will remain open until filled. No telephone calls, please. Only candidates selected for interviews will be contacted.

The Center for Biological Diversity deeply values, and is committed to sustaining and promoting, both biological and cultural diversity. We welcome, embrace and respect diversity of people, identities and cultures. We are committed to fostering an organizational culture of diversity and inclusion. The Center believes staff and board diversity is critical to saving life on Earth.

We are an equal opportunity employer.

Position Requirements

Essential qualities, qualifications and skills:

  • Minimum three to five years litigation experience.
  • Must be licensed to practice law in California or licensed elsewhere and willing and able to take the California bar exam.
  • Experience in Clean Air Act advocacy and clean vehicles policy preferred.
  • Excellent legal research, analysis, and writing skills.
  • Excellent oral advocacy skills, including public speaking experience and confidence.
  • A demonstrated ability to work both independently and with a team.
  • A demonstrated ability to take initiative and think creatively about policy and strategic campaigning.
  • Experience in coalition-organizing and working with a diverse range of interest groups, including government, non-government, and business actors, as well as intersectional coalitions in the progressive advocacy space preferred.
  • The ability to balance multiple tasks and deadlines in a busy environment.
  • Experience with media outreach and interviews preferred.
  • Willingness to travel, at times on short notice.
Full-Time/Part-Time Full-Time  
Location Los Angeles, CA  
Program(s) Climate Law Institute  
Open Date 2/4/2021  
Keywords Staff Attorney, Senior Attorney, Litigation, Climate Law, Clean Air Act, National Environmental Policy Act, Endangered Species Act, California Environmental Quality Act, Advocacy, Policy Research, Legal Research, Clean Transportation,  
EOE Statement We are an equal employment opportunity employer. All qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to race, color, religion, gender, national origin, disability status, protected veteran status or any other characteristic protected by law.  

This position is currently accepting applications.

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