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An article describing a “work in progress” can provide only a sketch of the initial plans for the new IUCN Academy of Environmental Law. As the Academy establishes its administrative secretariat, builds its research program, and fashions its collaborative teaching undertakings, the details of this further work will become clear. Their analysis must await the events. Nonetheless, the precedents to date portend a promising future, as illustrated by the launch in Shanghai, and the Academy's initial research into the environmental sustainability of contemporary energy law.