Environmental Policy (Spring 2017) Final exam
Please write essays in response to both (1) and (2). For question (1), you have a choice between (1)(a) and (1)(b):
(1)(a) You are the new policy adviser to the head of a major non-profit foundation devoted to making life better. Your boss, the foundation CEO, wants to get the organization involved in helping to reverse global warming by reducing greenhouse gas emissions. She calls you in and says, What is really happening to reduce CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions anyway? Anything? Is the Trump administration simply putting an end to the federal governments effort to stem emissions? Are all levels of government just stalled in dealing with the problem, or is something happening? If we get involved, where should we focus our efforts? What are our options? Should we focus on trying to change government policy? Change it to what? And what governments? Or focus away from government? Or do both? What would you recommend? What few things would be best for us to put our foundations resources to? Write a memo to her in response.
(1)(b) You are a new environmental policy adviser in the Trump White House. Your boss, a senior policy adviser to the President and admittedly clueless on how environmental policy is really made and implemented, asks for your help. She knows and has seen that the President and some of those around him want to reshape policy on the topic of energy and greenhouse gas emissions, with the main goal of freeing the energy sector to pursue whatever course the market allows without being skewed by climate change/greenhouse emissions policy.
But no one in the White House really understands what that would take, how to do it, how long it will take, what method or methods need to be used, how successful the effort will be, and whether this is something the federal government can do it on its own. She asks you for a road map to current and potential greenhouse gas emissions policy. Write a memo to her in response.
(2) During the class we tracked the first few months of environmental policy under the new federal administration and the new Congress. You all tracked one item in particular, and together we talked about the effort on a number of fronts. It is an interesting time, with the people now in power openly interested in vastly different policies than the previous administration, and in reversing many of the decisions of the previous administration intended to implement policy. From this perspective, what have you learned generally about how environmental policy is made and implemented in the United States? Who makes its and how? Who is involved? What types of actions are involved in changing the direction of environmental policy, especially in a significant way, and how successful are these efforts and on what timelines? How would you change the basic framework of American environmental policy and how it is made, if you could, and why?
The answer to each question should again be in the rough range of 4-6 pages. Longer if you want, and also shorter if you want if you feel you cover the subject adequately in less pages. Start with an introductory paragraph that frames the theme or thesis of your response, then follow with a discussion supporting your thesis. Please incorporate material from the readings to support your points whenever possible. There is no need to use any particular citation/footnote/bibliography form — whatever you do, just make sure I can know the source of your information.
You are free to talk about the essay questions with others in the class (and use and review any other material you can find), but please write your own answer.
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