env politics


All papers must be 4 to 6 typed, double-spaced pages (excludes bibliography pages) long with standard one-inch margins.  

NO EXTRA WIDE SPACING between paragraphs!  

Qualities like spelling, punctuation, grammar and usage are important, as they reflect on the quality of the paper and the amount of effort put into completing it.  Be sure to document any and all sources you consult, including your textbooks.  A separate bibliography page with 4 or more sources is required.  No more than 40% of the sources in your bibliography can be online-only (Wikipedia is not an acceptable source). For this paper, select an environmental policy area that is either (1) not covered in class at all, or (2) covered in class only broadly, in which case you would select a more specific variant of the issue in question.  For example, if we cover ‘habitat destruction’ in class, you can’t write on ‘habitat destruction but you can write a specific paper on clear-cutting of rainforests in Brazil, or on overgrazing in the Sahel; if we cover ‘air pollution’ in class, you can’t write on ‘air pollution but you could write on ‘radiation pollution from the Chernobyl disaster in 1986.’  

Write a report on your chosen policy area, in which you answer the following questions.  Describe the environmental problem that makes this a political issue.  What interest groups, if any, are involved in trying to influence policy on this issue?  Have any governments of affected nations taken steps to address this problem area?  If so, have the solutions worked as intended?  Have there been undesirable side effects (negative externalities) resulting from the solution?

Finally, consider whether this problem is nation-specific or crosses national boundaries.  Will inaction on this problem result in harmful externalities for other nations?  If so, identify them.  If this is a truly cross-national problem, have there been international efforts to address it? (For example, the 1997 Kyoto agreement on global warming; the 2009 Copenhagen framework; the 2015 Paris climate agreement; other international conferences or agreements).  If no international action has been taken, what are the prospects for meaningful international action in the future, in your judgment?  What political barriers or issue concerns might enhance the prospects for international action? Diminish the prospects for international action?

    • 14 days ago
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