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Cymie PayneCymie Payne
Director, Global Commons Project
Associate Director, Center for Law, Energy, and the Environment
UC Berkeley School of Law


Cymie Payne is associate director of the Center for Law, Energy, and the Environment and director of the Global Commons Project, which seeks to extend the influence of environmental law on global policy. She teaches climate change, international environmental law, and international courts and tribunals at Berkeley Law. She is a graduate of the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy and earned her juris doctor degree from UC Berkeley School of Law.

Payne served as an attorney-advisor in the Solicitor’s Honors Program at the U.S. Department of the Interior. She then practiced environmental law with the firm Goodwin, Procter in Boston, Massachusetts. Working as a senior attorney for the United Nations Compensation Commission in Geneva from 1999 to 2005, she was responsible for an international team of lawyers and technical experts assessing claims of damage to the environment and public health from conflict in the Persian Gulf. In this position, she worked with the panel of commissioners making landmark decisions that assessed war reparations for environmental damage.

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