An environmental agency is created by a country’s government to monitor and enforce the environmental policy that it has set into legislation. These agencies are fully funded the country’s government.
Environmental agencies look after home/leisure issues, business and industries and planning and research development. Issues looked after pollution and emissions, waste and recycling, climate change, outdoor recreation, promotion of green products and movements, nuclear energy and wildlife conservation.
It is important that global environmental agencies work together, as issues such as pollution, emissions and nuclear energy not only affects the local areas but affect the whole world.
In 1970 President Richard Nixon signed the National Environmental Policy Act as a reaction to the issues and concerns that were occurring in the USA’s environment. Until NEPA, the businesses of the world went unchecked and created most of the environmental issues that are still relevant today. NEPA prompted the creation of Environmental Agencies and Policies world-wide.
Clean Air Act
With the creation of NEPA, the USA also set into motion the Clean Air Act in response to pollutions and emissions from both the private and the public sectors. This put the USA as one of the top world leaders in environmental conservation.
Environmental policy refers to actions taken to prevent, reduce or alter any activities that affect the environment or humans. These policies become statutory legislation be they country wide laws of municipal bylaws.
Environment planning policy
The planning and maintaining of statutory duties to protect and preserve (enhance) the environment. Planning policy is drafted by the Environmental Agency and sent to the legislative body to create environmentally protective laws.
Many tools used to enforce the environmental policies are incentives, taxes and tax breaks, permits and fees. Businesses are levied high fines and risk potential shut down if their processes go against what is legally permitted by environmental policy. Environmental Officers have the legal power to lay these charges against businesses. Along with fines, businesses that cause environmentally negative issues such as chemical spillage or seepage into the areas water sources and ground must foot the bill for the clean-up before they can resume production.
With the amount of damage mankind has done to the planet, it seems that environmental agencies are just playing catch up, after so many decades of damage already been done. Pollution and emissions have long been accepted by the general public, as businesses drive the economics of the country and there always cheaper labour and less legality in economically poor countries, it is a fine balancing act to maintain the businesses interest in staying in the country and to keep the environment from being harmed more.
By utilizing permits and specific licences, the environment agency can monitor any business and its effect on the environment, and enforce the terms of the permits and licences.
Flooding has become a world-wide concern with the melting of the north and south poles glaciers as well as extreme storm activity. Flooding has taken up a large portion of environment policy as it not only concerns local communities, but erodes water ways, creates septic spills that threaten the wildlife of the streams, rivers or oceans. As the septic waste hasn’t been purified, the raw waste devastates any wildlife it comes in contact with through disease and death. Therefore is a national issue as well as a localized issue.
Climate change is at the forefront of most environmental agency’s agenda. With any climate change, new issues affect every person, plant and animal in the world. Preventing climate change is a vital part of maintaining or conserving life on our planet. Every person and business should be held responsible for anything they do to affect the environment.
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