2L Legal Intern

Environmental Defense Fund (EDF)
Boulder, CO, United States
Position Type: 
Organization Type: 
NGO/Civil Society
Experience Level: 
Not Specified


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EDF offers internships and fellowships for students and recent graduates in a variety of programs and departments throughout the organization. The ultimate goal of our internship and fellowship program is to provide high-quality experiences (including relevant projects and opportunities for networking) that form the foundation for any individual who is serious about pursuing an environmental career.

Environmental Defense Fund's U.S. Clean Air team seeks highly qualified and deeply motivated law students to work on projects related to climate change, air quality, and energy.

Program Overview

The U.S. Clean Air team envisions a world in which people from all backgrounds and experiences feel connected to the environmental challenges we face and are engaged in creating durable, equitable solutions. We are dedicated to achieving that vision in our work, helping achieve clean air for all. The U.S. Clean Air team works out of the Washington, D.C., and Boulder, CO offices. 

Legal interns on the U.S. Clean Air team contribute meaningfully to the team's work securing clean air and climate protections. We aim to make our interns' experience relevant, challenging, and rewarding. Our interns have directly contributed towards landmark cases over the years and have supported activities including: U.S. Supreme Court litigation, D.C. Circuit litigation over greenhouse gas regulation under the Clean Air Act, major international agreements and guidelines regarding trans-boundary pollution control programs in the U.S./Mexico border region, and projects that work towards ensuring protections for low-income and vulnerable communities from air pollution.

Overall Function

2L legal interns will work on projects such as researching and writing legal and policy documents for federal court litigation, administrative litigation, national and state regulatory proceedings, and various policy venues.

Key Responsibilities

Tasks may include but are not limited to:

  • Conduct legal and factual research on climate and clean air issues.
  • Contribute to litigation filings and administrative comments advocating for public health and environmental protections.
  • Assess the impacts of recent court decisions on U.S. Clean Air team priorities.
  • Evaluate the health and environmental implications of pending legislation.
  • Draft public-facing documents such as fact sheets and blog posts about legal issues.
  • Represent EDF at public hearings before government agencies.
  • Provide other support to the team's litigation efforts and regulatory advocacy.


  • Current 2L at ABA-approved law school.
  • Interest in working on cutting-edge regional, national, and international climate and air quality issues. 
  • Excellent written and oral communication skills.
  • Well organized, motivated, and detail oriented.
  • Ability to multi-task, prioritize and meet deadlines.
  • Ability to work in a team setting and to work independently when projects are due.
  • Demonstrated initiative and problem solving skills.


 Boulder, CO


Summer legal internships are ten weeks in duration.


Full-time (35 hours/week)


This internship would involve either compensation for work paid at a rate competitive with leading non-profits or academic credit. Students are encouraged to seek academic credit or funding through their college/university and EDF will ensure that any and all paperwork needed to secure academic credit is completed.

Application Materials

Interested applicants should attach their cover letter and resume to the EDF application, together with a writing sample, unofficial law school transcript, and list of three references. In your cover letter, please describe your interest in environmental law and policy work, relevant completed course work, and whether you wish to be considered for a position in the Washington, DC office, Boulder, CO office, or both offices.

Environmental Defense Fund is an equal opportunity employer where an applicant's qualifications are considered without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or any other basis prohibited by law.