Shelley Welton is a Presidential Distinguished Professor of Law and Energy Policy with the Kleinman Center and Penn Carey Law. Welton previously was an Associate Professor at the University of South Carolina School of Law.

At the Law School, Welton teaches environmental law, climate change law, and a seminar on Networks, Platforms, and Utilities. She also teaches “Introduction to Energy Policy,” a university-wide graduate course, for the Kleinman Center for Energy Policy.

Welton’s scholarship focuses on how climate change is transforming energy and environmental governance within the United States and transnationally. Current research projects include exploring a just energy transition for the U.S. south; understanding what lessons the failed nuclear renaissance offers for climate infrastructure development; and investigating grid reliability governance under climate change. Her scholarship has appeared in publications including the Yale Law JournalStanford Law ReviewCalifornia Law ReviewColumbia Law Review, Michigan Law Review, and Harvard Environmental Law Review.

Prior to academia, Welton worked as the deputy director of Columbia Law School’s Sabin Center for Climate Change Law. She also clerked for the Honorable David Trager of the Eastern District of New York and the Honorable Allyson Duncan of the Fourth Circuit. She received her Ph.D. in law from Yale Law, her J.D. from NYU School of Law, a M.P.A. in environmental science and policy from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs, and her B.A. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. 

“I look forward to collaborating across the University to enhance Penn’s leadership in climate and energy scholarship, policymaking, and education.”

Shelley Welton