Biography About Nadia

Nadia B. Ahmad, JD, LLM is an author, attorney, law professor, and environmental justice advocate. She is an Associate Professor at Barry University School of Law, where she teaches Environmental Law, Property, Business Organizations, and the Law of the Kardashians, and serves as the Coordinator of the Environmental and Earth Law Honors Certificate Program. Her research and scholarly expertise center on the intersections of energy siting, the environment, and sustainable development, drawing on international investment law and corporate social responsibility. Professor Ahmad has spent her academic career focusing on frontline communities that are the most vulnerable to energy production.

A prolific scholar, Professor Ahmad has published over 45 scholarly articles and book chapters that have appeared in leading journals of Duke University, Boston College, University of Virginia, University of North Carolina,  University of Miami, University of Kansas, Howard University, and the College of William & Mary. She is a co-author of the casebook, Environmental Justice: Law, Policy & Regulation (Carolina Academic Press, third edition). Earlier, she was a Visiting Associate Professor at Yale Law School and the inaugural Visiting Assistant Professor of Environmental Law at Pace Haub School of Law.

A pioneer in the field, Professor Ahmad has developed the concept of "climate cages" to highlight how public policy responses to atmospheric dynamics limit mobility, worsen prison conditions, and increase carcerality. She has researched how solutions to the climate crisis have led to the incarceration of Black and Brown people to maximize available land, space, and resources for those who are either more affluent and/or of the more preferred race, religion, and national origin.

A frequent media commentator, Professor Ahmad is a three-time recipient of the Barbara L. Frye Award for journalism from the Florida Capitol Press Corp. She has been interviewed by and written editorials in various media outlets including CBS, PBS, CNN, Washington Post, TIME, The Hill, Politico, The Nation, Common Dreams, and Axios.

She is an official expert for multilateral development organization, International Bamboo and Rattan Organisation (INBAR) Taskforce on Bamboo for Renewable Energy (TFB4RE), which promotes environmentally sustainable development using bamboo and rattan. In addition, she serves as a Kerry Fellow at the Yale Jackson School of Global Affairs, Fellow of the American Bar Foundation, Council Member of the American Bar Association’s Section of Civil Rights and Social Justice, and a member of the Academic Advisory Group for the International Bar Association's Section of Energy, Environment, Natural Resources and Infrastructure Law.

Professor Ahmad earned an undergraduate degree in Comparative Literature from the University of California at Berkeley, a law degree (J.D.) from the University of Florida Levin College of Law, and a masters of law (LL.M.) in Environmental and Natural Resources Law from the University of Denver Sturm College of Law. 

A political strategist, she is an elected member of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and serves as co-chair of the DNC Interfaith Council. She is the co-founder and chair of Muslim Delegates and Allies Coalition, a female-led political advocacy organization, which aims to ensure a broad consultation and coordination with Muslim constituencies across the United States and to collect Muslim views, experiences and expectations related for voter mobilization.

She was born in Orlando and raised in Altamonte Springs, Florida. Her parents are immigrants from Pakistan and India. She is passionate about issues relating to environmental justice, immigrant rights, and decarceration. She lives in Central Florida with her husband and three children. She enjoys mountain climbing, hiking, wildlife photography, and social distancing and loathes listservs and parties.

Selected Academic Talks


Southeastern Association of Law Schools Annual Meeting, Boca Raton, Florida (July 25)  

Law and Society Association Annual Meeting, San Juan, Puerto Rico (June 1-4)

University of Houston, Curie Energy Transition Governance and Law Project, Transnational Energy Law Regimes and Systems Dynamics (March 23)

International Bar Association, Academic Advisory Group Mid-Term Meeting and Workshop, Hamid Bin Khalifa University, Doha, Qatar (March 14)

Environmental Law Institute,  Community Lawyering for Environmental Justice Part 5: Recap of Federal Environmental Justice Legislation and Regulations from 2022 (February 27)

University of Miami, The Right to a Healthy Environment: From Recognition to Practice (February 23)

Southwestern Journal of International Law, Responses to Against White Feminism, Southwestern Law School (January 20)


Law and Society Association Annual Meeting, Evacuation Waves (July 13-16)

Tulane Law School, Evacuation Waves, Association for Law, Property, and Society Annual Meeting (May 20)

Arizona State University College of Law, Evacuation Waves, SRP Sustainability Conference of American Legal Educators (May 13)

UNITAR, Looking Towards COP 27: Housing Crisis, Food Shortages, and Energy Poverty, UNITAR-Yale Lecture Series, Part 3 (May 10)

ClassCrits, Against White Feminism Symposium (February 24)

Yale University, Bridging Issues & Optimizing Methods in Environmental Studies (BIOMES), Environmental Justice at Yale (February 16)

American Association of Law Schools Annual Meeting, Pandemic Responsiveness, Capacity Building and Renewable Energy Generation, Law and South Asian Studies (January 5-9)


Yale Law School, Social Justice in National Security Forum, Belonging at Yale (October 28)

UNITAR, Looking Towards COP 26: The Role of International Organizations, International Financial Institutions, and Governments in Energy Efficiency, Food Security, and Just Transitions in Rural Areas, UNITAR-Yale Lecture Series, Part 2 (October 26)

UNITAR, Looking Towards COP 26: Sustainable Agriculture, Labor Rights and Just Transitions in SDG Implementation, UNITAR-Yale Lecture Series, Part 1 (October 12)

Yale Law School, American Constitution Society (ASC) Progressive Scholarship Workshop, The Dialogic of Environmentalism: The Health Environment Advocacy Rhetoric (HEAR) Nexus (September 14)

Inaugural Workshop for Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) Women in the Legal Academy, The Dialogic of Environmentalism: The Health Environment Advocacy Rhetoric (HEAR) Nexus (August 5-6)

Association of Environmental Studies and Sciences, The Dialogic of Environmentalism: The Health Environment Advocacy Rhetoric (HEAR) Nexus, (June 28 – July 1)

Law and Society Association Annual Meeting, Islamic Environmental Law: Praxis, Paradigms, and New Modalities (May 27-30)

American Bar Association Section on Civil Rights and Social Justice, Dignity Rights in Asia: Humanitarian Toll of Economic Sanctions (May 24)

Environmental Law Association of South Africa, Uniontown Screening and Movie Panel (February 26)

American Society of International Law, Climate Cages, COVID-19, Climate Change, and International Law (February 16)

American Bar Association Section on Civil Rights and Social Justice, Climate Cages, When Race and the Environment Collide: The Impact of Systemic Racism on Environmental Justice (February 3)


Stockholm University, The Dialogic of Environmentalism, The Climate Crisis: Legal Safeguards for Justice and Security Workshop (December 2-3)

Vermont Law School, The Dialogic of Environmentalism, Vermont Environmental Law Colloquium (September 26)

Southeastern Association of Law Schools Annual Meeting, The Dialogic of Environmentalism, New Scholars Workshop, Energy, the Environment, and Technology (July 30 – August 4)  

Law & Society Association Annual Meeting, Environmental Justice 2020: Before and After the Pandemic (May 28)

Loyola University New Orleans College of Law, Climate Cages, The Moral & Legal Imperatives of the Climate Crisis (March 6)


University of San Diego School of Law, Lesley K. McAllister Symposium on Climate and Energy Law, The Future of Energy in a Changing Planet (November 8)  

Southeastern Association of Law Schools Annual Meeting, New & Established Voices in Property Law: Property Beyond Boundaries, Boca Raton, (July 28 – August 3)   

Southeastern Environmental Law Scholars Workshop, Silencing Environmentalism, Nashville, Tennessee (July 17-19)  

American Association of Law Schools Annual Meeting, Strategies for Deploying Critical Perspectives, Critical Pedagogy in the Era of Diversity, New Orleans, Louisiana (January 2-6) 


Harvard Law School, Faith-Based Approaches to Environmental Stewardship, Institute for Global Law and Policy Conference (June 1)

American Bar Association, Meta-Regulation for Environmental Reporting,Section of Environment, Energy, and Resources Spring Conference, Orlando, Florida (April 18-20)

University of South Carolina School of Law, Biofuels: Hidden Costs and Lost Potential, Just Transitions and the Law Workshop (March 29-30)

Yale Law School, Water Hazards and Environmental Justice, New Directions in Environmental Law (March 3)


University of Florida College of Law, Urban Systems for Advanced Biofuels, Public Interest Environmental Conference (February 10-11)

American Association of Law Schools Annual Meeting, Atmospheric Trust Litigation, Hot Topic, San Francisco, California (January 7, 2017)


Southeastern Association of Law Schools Annual Meeting, The Baseline Bar, Energy Infrastructure in Transition: Environmental, Economic, and Justice-Based Issues in Modern Energy Law, Amelia Island, Florida (August 3-9)

Columbia Law School, Balking at Biofuels, Sabin Colloquium on Innovative Environmental Law Scholarship (May 26-27)

University of Florida Levin College of Law, Sustainable Development and Oil and Gas Drilling, Drilling for Oil off of Florida’s Coast, Public Interest Environmental Conference (February 19)

World Future Energy Summit, Incentivizing Second Generation Biofuels: Legal and Policy Mechanisms for Sustainable Energy Innovation and Investment, Abu Dhabi (January 19) 

American Association of Law Schools Annual Meeting, Analysis of India’s Sirsa River Valley, Environmental Futures: South Asia’s Law & Policy Challenges, New York (January 8)


Vermont Law School, Tribes and Pipelines, Environmental Law Colloquium (October 3)

University of Washington School of Law, Tribes and Pipelines, Junior Environmental Law Scholars Workshop, (July 9-10)

Harvard Law School, Islamic Environmental Law, Institute for Global Law and Policy Conference (June 1)

Columbia Law School, Tribes and Pipelines, Sabin Colloquium on Innovative Environmental Law Scholarship (May 22)

University of Georgia School of Law, Tribes and Pipelines, Association for Law, Property, and Society Sixth Annual Meeting (May 2)

Yale University, Climate & Energy Institute, Monsoon Preparedness, Hydropower, and Environmental Planning: Tropical Extremes in Monsoon Regions Workshop (April 16)

The American University in Cairo, The Genesis of Islamic Environmental Law, Third World Approaches to International Law: On Praxis and the Intellectual (February 23)


Columbia University, Balking at Biofuels in the Middle East, Second International Conference on Sustainable Development Practice (September 17)

Yale University, Meta-Regulation for Sustainability Reporting, UNITAR-Yale Conference on Environmental Governance & Democracy (September 5-7)

Harvard Law School, Balking at Biofuels, Institute for Global Law & Policy Collaborative Research Conference (June 2-3)


Harvard Law School, Sustainability as a Waqf: Biofuels in the Middle East, New Directions in Global Thought: Institute for Global Law & Policy at Five (June 3, 2013)

Texas A&M School of Law, Issues in Long Distance Energy Transmission, Fifth Annual Energy Symposium (March 22, 2013)

Hamad bin Khalifa University, Charting the Hydrokinetic Path in Pakistan, Harvard Law School Institute for Global Law and Policy Workshop, Doha, Qatar (January 5 – 13)


George Washington University Law School, Media and Stakeholder Analysis in Sustainability Reporting: Corporate Self-Regulation and Community Based Monitoring in India and Colorado, Next Generation Environmental Compliance Workshop (December 11)  

nadia tedx