The Government and Environmental Policy

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The Government and Environmental Policy

By | October 1999
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The Government and Environmental Policy

The purpose of the United States' public policy law is to implement restrictions in an effort to solve problems, which can be seen with the Clean Water Act. Public policy has also been employed to reform the Endangered Species Act of 1973. Although the United States government is noble in it's efforts to preserve the environment through these acts, the internal structure of public policy often retards these acts' effectiveness. This paper will explore the many ways in which factors such as horizontal implementation, divided government, and other forms of public policy affect the environmental legislation involved with the aforementioned acts. The main factors involved with the Endangered Species Act of 1973 involve horizontal implementation structure and divided government. Before one can discuss how these policies affect environmental legislation, a brief description of each must first be lucidly explained. When our government was founded, a system of checks and balances was implemented between the executive, judicial, and legislative branches to ensure that no one part of government gets too much power. Although this limits the power of any one person in government, it often slows down the ability of government because a consensus can be difficult with so many people working together. Another problem is that there are many subgovernments affecting the legislation as well, such as interest groups like the Sierra Club, Administrative Agents like the Environmental Protection Agency, and Congressional Committees. Because these groups add to the total number of people working on the legislation, the original noble ideology of making policy for the good of the nation is voided. Also because there are so many differences of opinion, few drastic changes are made, instead small incremental changes are made which take up lots of time and retard the effectiveness and enforcement of the legislation. In addition to this...
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