TAG: Policy

A Delicate Balance

A Delicate Balance

Environmental awareness and protectionist measures are at an all time high. Many countries in the developing world have set up a framework for sound regulation of the use and reliance on the environment. However, bad economic times pose challenges that have caused tension between human and environment survival. In these hard and trying times, many unscrupulous corporations are taking advantage of the challenges faced by developing countries. The dire need for job creation and foreign investment has opened the unfortunate opportunity for governments to be open to negotiations on investments that were otherwise not open for negotiation. In Swaziland, the… read more

Piracy & the Environment

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With the continuing increase of piracy, we are clearly in need of better maritime protection. But beyond bringing piratical acts to justice, steps must also be taken to remedy the root causes that turn people to piracy in the first place. Pirates are not sea loving adventurers, but often those with no other means of survival on even the most basic level. Many factors contributing to piracy have remained the same, as recruits are brought together by the appalling humanitarian conditions in which they live, coming from nations with financial instability and a lack of central government. Recruits are often young men with no other source… read more

Is Cap and Trade Needed?

Cap and trade policy

Cap-and-trade has derailed political discussions and political action regarding environmental and energy policy, and as a result, the necessity of a cap-and-trade policy has been questioned. Simply stated, the answer is fairly straight-forward: cap-and-trade is ineffective in the short-term, at least in the United States, yet critical for long-term emission reduction and responsible energy policy. Negotiations over a cap-and-trade bill in the Senate collapsed in April 2010, leaving a void in environmental policy with responsible energy management legislation. Interestingly enough, even without a cap-and-trade policy established, U.S. carbon emissions continued to drop. Since 2006, the United States has cut its… read more

Green Energy Policies

Green Energy Policies

The current trends in U.S. energy policy are encouraging, but also disheartening. There is reason to be encouraged by the Obama administration’s “green” energy policies. The New Energy for America plan proposed during the 2008 campaign, the recent plan for renewable energy tax credits, and the continued support for renewable energy production are all positive steps. However, all these progressive plans must make their way through Congress, which has been less than interested in acting on these policies. The attacks from those in Congress levied on the EPA, however legitimate or illegitimate on their own merits, damaged the popular perspective… read more

Energy Storage Required

Energy storage

It is very easy to forget about the logistics of energy systems when there is so much drama and conflict surrounding the energy sources, but it is imperative that energy storage is not forgotten when a final renewable energy policy is implemented. Producing a vast amount of energy from renewable sources is excellent, but it is generally accepted that a successful renewable energy policy will produce more energy than the demand calls for, which would require storage and preservation if intentions are to not waste the energy. This is not a new concept, nor is it foreign. Refrigerators solved the… read more

Prompt Action Required

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Environmental policy, like many other areas of legislation, is not exempt from the slow-moving nature of the American government. As a result, it is difficult to convey the need for prompt action, especially in the case of progressive environmental legislation. However, America is in a situation which demands immediate action. Former Governor Mitt Romney presented his energy plan last week in Hobbs, New Mexico, and called for a boost in oil exploration along the East coast. In addition, he would reverse the suspension of oil drilling off of the coast of Virginia, which was handed down by President Obama following… read more

Solar Power In 2013

Solar Power in 2013

2012 was a good year for solar powered gadgets, solar panels, and other sustainable energy methods. The all-electric Tesla Model S car debuted, several major corporations adopted solar energy for their buildings, and green tech saw a giant leap in popularity. According to CEO Lynn Jurich of Sunrun, a solar power installation company, 2013 will have twice as big an impact on eco-tech than this past year displayed. Approximately 92% of Americans agree that developing and using solar power is necessary for alternative energy growth, and have voiced their opinions through blogs, television, and letters to congressmen. Companies in the solar… read more