Michael Burger is the Executive Director of the Sabin Center for Climate Change Law. He oversees a dynamic team of attorneys working in eight program areas to combat climate change. His research and advocacy focus on legal strategies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and promote climate change adaptation through pollution control, resource management, land use planning and green finance. Michael is Of Counsel at Sher Edling LLP, a boutique plaintiffs firm that represents states, cities, public agencies, and businesses in high-impact, high-value environmental cases.
Michael frequently collaborates with researchers across Columbia's Earth Institute, and with local and national environmental groups, government representatives, and international organizations. He is a widely published scholar, a frequent speaker at conferences and symposiums, and a regular source for media outlets, including The Washington Post, Newsweek, Time, Forbes, The Guardian, Bloomberg, and Vox.com. He has been featured on Science Friday and Living on Earth.
Burger teaches a seminar on Natural Resources Law. Prior to joining the Sabin Center in 2015, he was an associate professor at Roger Williams University School of Law, where he taught environmental law, administrative law, and law and literature, and was founder and director of the Environmental and Land Use Law Clinical Externship program. He previously taught in the Lawyering Program at New York University School of Law, and served as an attorney in the Environmental Law Division of New York City’s Office of the Corporation Counsel. He has lead short courses on climate change and human rights in the Hague and Grand Cayman. He is also a co-founder and member of the Environmental Law Collaborative.
Michael is a graduate of Columbia Law School and of Brown University. He also holds a Master of Fine Arts degree from the Creative Writing program at NYU.