For this assignment, you will research and write an APA research paper about environmental policies, including the following:
Choose 1 U.S. environmental law. State the name of the law and the date the law was passed.
Summarize the major provisions of the law that you chose.
Describe the economic impact of the law. Provide specific economic data from credible references.
Has the law improved the environment or situation? Provide specific data from credible references.
Do you think that sound science has proven that global warming is a credible threat or not?
Should the United States adopt additional policies or laws to curb greenhouse gas emissions?
What should these policies or laws regulate or encourage?
Use specific facts to defend your position.
Environmental Law: The Clean Air Act
Environmental law refers to the network of regulations, statutes and treaties designed to address the implications of human activity on the environment. The primary focus of environmental law is the pollution of the environment. Regulations involve the management of natural resources like fisheries, minerals and forests. Virtually all countries in the globe have environmental laws aimed at preserving the natural environment within their jurisdictions respectively. The focus of this paper is the Clean Air Act of the United States of America.
The Clean Air Act is a federal law of the USA that aims to manage air pollution in the entire country. The law was passed on 17th December, 1963 by the 88th United States Congress (Walker, 2013). Title I of the act summarizes the air pollution, prevention and control and constitutes four parts. These are: “air quality and emissions limitations; ozone protection; prevention of significant deterioration of air quality; and plan requirements for non-attainment areas” (Kuklinska et al., 2015). Title II is termed as “Emission Standards for Moving Sources” and comprises three parts: “Motor vehicle emission and fuel standards; aircraft emission standards; and clean fuel vehicles” (Gallisdorfer, 2013). Additionally, title III is titled ‘General Provisions’ whereas title IV is ‘Noise Pollution”. In general, there are forty-two titles in the Clean Air Act.
From an economic perspective, the Clean Air Act has reduced air pollution along with the economic costs associated with it. The primary facilitators of air pollution in the environment are industrial corporations that are involved in such activities as manufacturing products. Since the implementation of the Clean Air Act, many of these companies have desisted from releasing poisonous gases into the air recklessly. Consequently, this has preserved the health of American residents. There have been less notable illnesses and premature deaths due to air pollution, which translates to increased worker productivity, reduced medical expenses, improved quality of life and high life expectancy (Kuklinska et al., 2015). Extensive air pollution is also very costly for the government. Since its reduction, the government’s expenditure on public health has reduced significantly. Research shows that the Act averted 205,000 premature deaths and prevented millions of illnesses such as respiratory and cardiac diseases. “When expressed in economic terms, the benefits were estimated as much as $50 trillion as compared with implementation costs of $523 billion” (Ross et al., 2012, p. 1). Undoubtedly, this data shows that the enactment of the Clean Air Act has improved both the environment and the subsequent situation of living conditions in America.
Perceptibly, I believe that sound science has proven the credibility of the global warming threat. Essentially, over the past few decades scientists have provided evidence and sound logic to indicate that the mankind should be concerned about the threat of global warming. My perspective is that any converse opinions are merely cases of denial of facts. In this regard, the U.S should definitely adopt supplementary laws or policies to tackle greenhouse gas emissions because the situation is adverse and there can be no shortage of formidable action towards alleviating this environmental situation. In recommendation, these laws or policies should encourage people to adopt better environmental preservation practices such as recycling, tree planting, usage of reduced heat, replacement of light bulbs, and usage of more energy-efficient products (Gallisdorfer, 2013).
Conclusively, environmental laws serve the purpose of managing human activities for the purpose of preserving an already dilapidated environment. The Clean Air Act of 1963 has played a fundamental role in alleviating the situation of air pollution in the USA. Consequently, there have been noticeable improvements in the quality of life of American residents and a significant reduction in government expenditure on the costs of air pollution.
Gallisdorfer, S. (2013). Clean Air Act Preemption of State Common Law: Greenhouse Gas Nuisance Claims After AEP v. Connecticut. Va. L. Rev., 99, 131.
Kuklinska, K., Wolska, L., & Namiesnik, J. (2015). Air quality policy in the US and the EU–a review. Atmospheric Pollution Research, 6(1), 129-137.
Ross, K., Chmiel, J. F., & Ferkol, T. (2012). The impact of the Clean Air Act. The Journal of Pediatrics, 161(5), 781–786.
Walker, W. R. (2013). The transitional costs of sectoral reallocation: Evidence from the Clean Air Act and the workforce. The Quarterly journal of economics, 128(4), 1787-1835.