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Online LLM Energy and Environmental Law

Start date
February / June / October
2.5 years
Course Type
Postgraduate, Distance learning, Taught
£17,010 / £2,430

More fees and funding details


Our Online LLM in Energy and Environmental Law will equip you with the essential skills you need to tackle the world’s energy issues and the demands of climate change.

Whatever your professional ambition, this 100% online programme provides the legal framework for careers in both energy and environmental law.

Tackle the worlds greatest challenges 

Energy is crucial to our social and economic lives, and yet we’re having to do more with less against depleting natural resources and mounting environmental concerns. Law is key to meeting these challenges head on.

Covering both energy management and environmental protection in one programme, this online LLM will help you answer today’s biggest challenges, while supporting careers in both fields. According to the UN, a shift to a greener economy is estimated to create 24 million new jobs globally by 2030 (United Nations 2019).

Taught by lecturers at the forefront of government legislation, at a standard you’d expect from a Russell Group university, you can be confident that anything you learn here is enriched with up-to-date research and career-focused content.

By adopting a transnational, multi-jurisdictional approach to energy ownership and environmental protection, our lecturers will prepare you to take on a host of local and global legal issues. It’s this that makes the programme perfect for students the world over.

Your programme of study

Exploring topics such as environmental protection, energy regulation and climate change law, this 180-credit programme is split between six modules, plus a final dissertation. Spanning 2.5 years, you’ll have time to delve deeply into the module content and reflect on everything you’ve learnt.

To assess your understanding, you will be asked to complete a case study after each module plus three reflective reports throughout the programme. You will also be expected to submit a dissertation at the end. 

Programme outcomes include:

  • Insights into the issues around environmental protection
  • How energy production depends on natural resources
  • Problem-solving, evidential reasoning, negotiation and drafting skills
  • Legal issues arising from deploying resources and generating energy
  • Transactions underpinning energy production and supply
  • Events of market failure and modes of regulation
  • Patterns of energy production, supply and consumption 

Did you know?

The University of Birmingham is one of the top 60 Law schools in the world (THE 2022 rankings)

There are environmental impacts wherever we create energy. The decarbonisation of our energy systems to reduce these environmental impacts, will create new opportunities for jobs and economies around the world. This course brings these two issues together, and positions you to take advantage of these opportunities as they arise

Dr Walters Nsoh, Director of the Online LLM in Energy and Environmental Law, University of Birmingham

Frequently asked questions

Is an Online LLM worth it?

Online LLMs (Master of Laws) are often earned by students who wish to develop more concentrated legal expertise in a particular area (for example, energy and the environment). Pursuing an online LLM also allows students to build upon their professional network, strengthen their connections and stand out from an employability perspective.  

This Online LLM has been designed to provide real value for anyone looking for growing responsibility in energy and the environment.

What support will I have while studying the Online LLM?

You will learn from leading academics and industry figures, have access to community boards and instant messaging services, regular live discussions and support from a dedicated Student Services Coordinator – all to help guide you through your student journey.

There is also access to 24/7 technical support, should you have any issues in accessing the virtual learning environment. 

Find out more about your support team.

Where can I study an Online LLM?

The fully online nature of this LLM means you don’t need to ever visit Birmingham to study. Providing that you have an internet connection and a suitable computer, you can complete the course from nearly anywhere in the world. That said, as a University of Birmingham student, you will have full access to the campus, should you ever find yourself nearby.

 Find out more about technology requirements for online students.

Why study an LLM online?

Studying online allows you to further your career without having to take a break from working. If you’re already a qualified lawyer, you’ll have the chance to apply what you learn almost immediately, adding to the value that an online LLM brings.

Studying this way also allows you to obtain your qualification from a highly respected university without needing to relocate or travel.

 Find out more about the online student experience.

Enquire now for detailed programme and pricing information


The Online LLM in Energy and Environmental Law is a 180 credit full masters programe. As a student on the programme, you would study three 20 credit modules in year one, followed by three 20 credit modules in year two. Each module lasts approximately sixteen weeks. Students enrol onto these modules one at a time and in a linear structure to ensure they grasp the fundamentals in manageable sections.

Core modules:

Environmental and energy regulation

Exploring different forms of environmental and energy regulation around the world, you’ll learn how the environmental impact of energy systems is regulated, and when, where and how the law intervenes in ordinary market transactions.

Law relating to nuclear energy

This module looks at the potential for nuclear energy within a country’s energy mix, detailing the commissioning and decommissioning of nuclear power facilities and issues around nuclear safety and liability.

Assessment and financing of energy projects

Examining both the environmental assessment and the financial impact of energy infrastructure, you’ll understand how big energy projects must repay the financial costs incurred in setting them up without incurring environmental costs too.

Oil and gas law

Assessing ownership of natural resources, this module explores the licensing of natural resource exploitation, the processes involved in refining and distributing oil and gas, the transportation of resources to other countries and issues concerning their consumption.

Environmental protection and pollution control

Analysing the planning and permissions involved in conducting environmental operations around the world, you will explore the systems used to mitigate and control environmental pollution.

Renewable energy and climate change law

Learn about how climate change is driving the shift toward renewables and the resulting legal issues in developing green energy infrastructure, as well as the extent to which renewable energy can form part of the energy mix.

To fulifil the requirements of the masters degree, students then have the opportunity to complete a dissertation at the end of year two. This is a research project which can be tailored to a specific area of interest, or to your own work environment. The dissertation is equal to 60 credits of study.


The full cost of this programme is £17,010 GBP This can be paid in full or in instalments of £2,430 GBP per module. Programme fees are reviewed annually and are subject to change each academic year.


International students can occasionally gain funding through overseas research scholarships, Commonwealth scholarships or via your home government. It’s good to do your research to find opportunities which you could be eligible for.

Postgraduate loans for masters students

The UK government has reconfirmed its commitment to loans for postgraduate degrees. Students are now able to receive up to £10,906 for taught masters degrees – and this includes students who wish to study online.

How To Apply

Click on the ‘Apply now’ button and create an account. You will be directed to an application specifically designed for the Online LLM in Energy and Environmental Law. Submit your application and supporting documentation online. Your supporting documents include:

  • Curriculum vitae (CV) or résumé: Demonstrate your academic and work experience, in addition ot any other skills that may support your application. This will help our recruitment team ensure that you have the right experience for the programme.
  • Statement of purpose: Draw attention to your skills, experience and goals, and to explain why you wish to apply for this programme. This should be no longer than one page of text.
  • Two references: Send details of your references either as a letter of recommendation or a recorded transcript by email or by post to our recruitment team. These must be signed, on letterheaded paper, or supplied with your referee’s business card.
  • Transcripts: To verify your education, we ask you to submit your previous academic transcripts, either in notarized form or sent directly from your previous institution.
  • Evidence of language (if applicable): If English is not your first language, you will need to also supply an up-to-date English language certificate which meets the entry criteria – as detailed in our standard entry requirements section.

 If you would like any feedback or advice about your application, our recruitment team would be happy to help. You can fill out a request for information or call +44 (0)800 032 7101.

How to apply

To apply for a postgraduate taught programme, you will need to submit your application and supporting documents online. We have put together some helpful information on the taught programme application process and supporting documents on our how to apply page. Please read this information carefully before completing your application.

Apply now

Our Standard Requirements

In order to be eligible for the Online LLM in Energy and Environmental Law, you will need to posess (or be predicted to obtain) an upper second-class degree in law. Alternatively, you may also apply if you have obtained an upper second class degree in an allied field with demonstrable work experience in the sector. Select your country from the drop down below for details on equivalent qualification levels.

Standard English language requirements also apply. If English is not your first language, you must also have an up-to-date English language test certificate. We accept Academic IELTS certificates with a grade of 6.5 and no less than 6.0 in any band. Other forms of English language certificates are accepted. Please discuss this with a recruitment coordinator.

International Requirements

What is it like to study for an LLM online?

Distance learning involves a whole lot more than just putting campus programmes online. The 100% Online LLM in Energy and Environmental Law has been purpose-built from the ground up to harness the full power of the technologies available, involving everything from cloud-powered collaboration to interactive live lectures. The format is ideally suited to working professionals who are balancing their careers and personal commitments alongside their studies.

Learning for future leaders

Online LLM students have access to a cutting-edge digital platform throughout their studies. We have moved beyond the traditional classroom structure, taking full advantage of digital media with modules that draw on interactivity, active student participation and social connectivity to provide a more dynamic learning experience.

Rather than simply reading lecture transcripts and sending in assignments, the University of Birmingham’s online students engage with the curriculum directly using:

  • Video lectures: accessing content at any time and from any device
  • Interactive assignments: actively participating in learning exercises
  • Real-life case studies: gain skills you can apply to your organisation immediately
  • Peer interaction: connect with peers, professors and tutors online
  • Digital resources: rely on support for any of your admissions, enrolment, technology or career needs

 Module structure

In every module, there live lecture sessions, (known as connect sessions). You will be allocated a time for these sessions that fits best with your time zone. In each session you will have the opportunity to present your work and/or discuss case study exercises.

  • Be taught by our internationally respected course leaders.
  • Communicate and network with fellow students in forums and via instant chat.
  • Undertake assignments (reports, essays, presentations, quizzes, group work), with deadlines structured at reasonable intervals to help guide you through your student journey.

Find out more about the Online LLM

Career opportunities: Online LLM in Energy and Environmental Law

Fuel a career in energy and environmental law

The market for legal expertise in energy and environmental law is ripe with opportunity. According to the UN, a shift to a greener economy could create 24 million new jobs globally by 2030.1

You may be a lawyer ready for your next challenge or a professional with growing regulatory responsibilities in the energy or environmental sector. Whatever your background, this programme offers key insights into the transnational legal frameworks.

Build your future

We understand how important it is to focus on your professional future during your time with us. We aim to enable and inspire students to maximise their potential, grow intellectually and gain the skills, understanding and attributes that are highly sought after by employers, giving you excellent future prospects in a competitive employment market.

Previous LLM graduates from the Birmingham Law School have gone on to become successful high court judges, prosecutors and law firm partners.

Become more employable

We want to ensure that you can progress in this competitive environment and have designed our course content with a practical approach and contemporary subject matter. It is this experience that will give you a commanding position when it comes to taking advantage of the career opportunities available.

Find out more about your career outlook.

 During your studies, you should expect to:

  • Appreciate the issues around environmental protection and the extent to which energy production depends on natural resources
  • Apply problem-solving, evidential reasoning, negotiation and drafting skills
  • Resolve legal issues from deploying resources to generating energy
  • Manage transactions underpinning energy production and supply globally
  • Determine patterns of energy production, supply and consumption

Why choose the University of Birmingham for your LLM?

  • Energy is the dominant contributor to climate change, accounting for approximately 60% of greenhouse gas emissions (UN 2019)2
  • Current commitments to reduce nationally determined contributions are inadequate to bridge the emissions gap by 2030 (UN Emissions Gap Report 2018)³
  • 2nd most targeted university by the UK’s top employers (High Fliers Research 2020)⁴
  • Birmingham Law School’s Centre for Professional Legal Education and Research (CEPLER) presents students with opportunities to increase their knowledge of law in action through pro bono, mooting and law-specific career events

Find out more about the Online LLM in Energy and Environmental Law


  1. Unknown (2019) Green economy could create 24 million new jobs. United Nations Sustainable Development Goals [online, accessed 12.02.2020]
  2. Unknown (2019) 7 affordable and clean energy. United Nations Sustainable Development Goals [online, accessed 12.02.2020]
  3. Unknown  (2018) Executive summary: Emissions Gap Report 2018United Nations Environment Programme [online, accessed 12.02.2020]
  4. Unknown  (2020) The Graduate Market in 2020High Fliers Research Limited [online, accessed 12.02.2020]