About Seton Hall Law

Michael Deloreto

Michael DeLoreto ’14 presents and publishes on environmental law issue

His article regarding a wind power project off the coast of Massachusetts is published in the October issue of NATIONAL SEA GRANT LAW AND POLICY JOURNAL

Michael DeLoreto ’14 published an article in the October issue of NATIONAL SEA GRANT LAW AND POLICY JOURNAL, entitled, “Judicial Review of the Aviation Hazard Determinations for Cape Wind: Why the FAA Got It Wrong.” The article was selected for publication after DeLoreto was invited to present it at the New Jersey Sea Grant Regional Ocean Governance Symposium, hosted at Seton Hall University last April.

In his article, DeLoreto examines recent legal disputes over the development of a major project to generate wind power at Cape Wind, a site located off the coast of Massachusetts. The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) made the determination that the Cape Wind project posed “no hazard” to aviation, despite its windmill towers reaching 440 feet high. This determination was challenged, and then reversed and remanded by the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia, on the basis that the FAA determination was arbitrary and capricious. In response, the FAA issued a second determination, taking into account the standard outlined by the D.C. Circuit in its opinion, and ultimately reached the same conclusion. The article argues that the FAA failed to correct the flaws addressed by the D.C. Circuit, and proposes potential solutions for the FAA to avoid challenges to its “no hazard” determinations in the future.

The topic for this article was a natural choice for DeLoreto, given his interest in administrative law and environmental topics within that field. “I always had an interest in administrative law and environmental topics within that field,” DeLoreto explains. “Part of that stems from my work experience prior to coming to law school. I spent four years as Chief of Staff to Assemblyman Reed Gusciora, who was Vice-Chairman of the Assembly Environment and Solid Waste Committee.” DeLoreto remembers reading court cases involving the Cape Wind project, and around the time he was choosing a note topic for the SETON HALL LAW REVIEW, it just so happened that the FAA re-issued its determination on the Cape Wind project.

Professor Marc Poirier advised DeLoreto on his note and was also a member of the NJ Sea Grant Regional Ocean Governance Symposium planning committee. He submitted DeLoreto’s note for consideration to be presented at the symposium and to be published by the NATIONAL SEA GRANT LAW AND POLICY JOURNAL. “I am extremely grateful for his mentorship,” DeLoreto commented. “To be included in a scholarly journal with academics and practitioners from across the country is a great honor.”

DeLoreto is also grateful to Professor Poirier and Professor Angela Carmella for mooting his presentation prior to the symposium. “Their input was invaluable and it showed the dedication the professors here at Seton Hall have for their students to succeed.”

Read the full article in the National Sea Grant Law and Policy Journal, “Judicial Review of the Aviation Hazard Determinations for Cape Wind: Why the FAA Got It Wrong”

- Contributed by Sabrina Mirza ‘15