The Impact On Environmental Policy Single Handedly Essay

The Impact On Environmental Policy Single Handedly Essay

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Individuals are also able to have an impact on environmental policy single handedly. The prime example of such successful (or at least attention-getting, if not completely revolutionary) actions is those of Diane Wilson, an environmental activist from Texas. Her unconventional ways included pouring syrup on her head during a congressional hearing as well as sinking her boat in the gulf to attract attention for the irresponsible waste disposal by Formosa Plastics (Rinfret, Pautz, 105-106). Wilson’s actions attracted the attention of other fisherman involved in the area who quickly became involved and, in conjunction with the actions of the Coast Guard, Formosa began to clean up after themselves (Rinfret, Pautz, 105). This proves that actions by one individual, if they target the right audiences, are able to have a huge impact on public policy. This initial belief in this case was that if a corporation has enough money they are somewhat exempt from the law, but as Diane Wilson’s action proved, this is not always the case.
While big business and government officials may have the most persuasive or direct influence on environmental policy making, individuals are the essential grassroots level of communication which is often most effective at mobilization of others. Diane Wilson’s single-handed actions quickly led to increased interest in her cause, and eventually led to a resolution she was satisfied with. Interest groups would not be possible without individuals, so to that degree I find that it is the individuals of the nation who have the most influence on other similar individuals and government policy-makers alike. The most important power of citizens on environmental policy making is one that we so often take for granted; the p...


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... much easier than attempting to implement new policies. Regulation of already approved policies is an easier task than implementing new policies, so being able to dedicate resources of the EPA to his causes would definitely be a positive endeavor. Finally, I feel that this is the most successful strategy to environmental policy as the confusion that is often so prevalent in congress will be eliminated, the partisanship will be taken out of legislation creation, and considering the EPA is responsible for their own laws, being able to look at how they currently enforce and employ old laws will allow them to easily create new mandates which will not contradict old laws. Having congress or other players involved in this policy may create a situation where old and new are not compatible; an expensive mistake which will only further the problems that we already encounter.

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