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«Stringent Environmental Protection: Fiscally Ineffective»

Protection of the environment of the USA should not be stringent because it is not fiscally sensible. Stringent environmental protection policies are retro progressive because they stifle the country’s economic growth by limiting the productive capacities of its extractive industries. In fact, stringent environmental protection policies are unnecessary considering that the proof that men’s activities are chiefly responsible for climate changes and increased greenhouse gases is lacking. In addition, stringent environment protection policies are financially unsustainable because the administrative and legal procedures involved are often lengthy and countered by suits from concerned parties, which include private citizens, businesses, and advocacy groups. Although stringent environmental policies are unnecessary, they are helpful in ensuring that the natural resources inherent in the environment are sustainably and responsibly exploited thus guaranteeing survival in the future. Nonetheless, the imposition of stringent environmental protection policies does not guarantee that the climate change evidently ongoing is to be mitigated. After all, much scientific evidence describes it as a natural earthly phenomenon that started millions of years ago.

Stringent environmental protection policies curtail the growth of industries, thus limiting the economic growth of the country. It is stifling for the economy because industries, especially those dealing with the extraction of natural resources, are mandated to comply with rules and regulations that place caps on their extractive capacities. This situation disadvantages the industries that are competing with industries in other countries, where such production caps are absent. In fact, an investigative report on the effect of severe environment policies aimed at curtailing greenhouse gas emissions on employment opportunities found out that there would be a significant drop in employment in the future in case industries adopt fossil-free sources of power (Arnold 2010). This finding takes into account the observation that employers typically adjust their workforce in reaction to the market conditions or regulatory rules. For instance, government subsidies and attractive quotas to entice industries to abandon their fossil fuel energy sources that increase the carbon footprint would certainly lure the industries. Moreover, the intense competition inherent in capitalistic economies like this country forces these industries to comply for the sake of survival. However, the survival of the industries comes at a cost of the workers’ jobs. The shrinking of job opportunities will be succeeded by the inability of the retrenched workers to adapt to the new working environment that stresses new practices. In addition, the costs involved in the retraining or reorienting of the workers to environmental conscious practices are still unsustainable, even if the government offers to assume responsibility.

The lack of scientific evidence that establishes a direct link between men’s activities and the climate change phenomenon invalidates the need for stringent environmental protection policies. Often stringent environmental protection policies intend to control men’s activities, which are blamed for causing rapid increases in greenhouse gases thus climate change. However, the absence of scientific evidence implies that the continuation of stringent environmental protection policies is not a guarantee that climate change would subside. Several debates exist about the validity of the evidence that those advocating stringent environmental protection measures present in pushing for their cause. Although these scientists provide measurements and data that prove climate change is indeed happening, they have never been able to prove that climate change directly correlates with men’s activities (OSS Foundation 2013). On the contrary, skeptics of this climate change theory that blames men’s intervention for climate change have provided at least five scientifically proven evidences that demonstrate that climate change is a cyclical natural event on the earth since the beginning of time (Hawkins 2014). Therefore, the insistence of stringent environmental protection measures that limit men’s potential will not guarantee an end to climate change.   

The administrative and legal costs of reinforcing stringent environmental policies and initiatives make it an investment on its own. Investments require returns. However, stringent policies that curtail the growth of industries, thus the growth of the economy will face a lot of opposition from concerned parties, resulting in lengthy legal battles. Several states in the USA are already facing legal challenges in interpreting the federal government’s policy on environmental protection (Hecht 2004). Compounding this problem is the fact that each of these states has its own legislation that suits its economic interests. For instance, many industrial states are already battling lawsuits and the mass exit of factories because they adopted some of the federal policies on environmental protection. These legal battles and huge capital overlays needed in the environment protection policies make it an expensive affair. Moreover, there is a crisis among the proponents of stringent environmental regulations on the best policies to adopt as standards in their attempts at regulating the environment on a global scale.

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Proponents of stringent environmental protection counter the claims that it is a threat to job opportunities in a country by alleging that it merely shifts job opportunities. For instance, the jobs lost in the industrial sectors are replaced by new jobs in the fields of environmental protection and advocacy. However, the magnitude of job losses overwhelms the magnitude of job creation because not everybody retrenched or who has lost a job opportunity in the industrial sector is qualified to be employable in a new job sector that concerns the environment. Moreover, most of the environmentalists are highly educated in institutions of higher learning, a privilege that few people in the society can afford. The other counter claim is that stringent environmental protection ensures that natural resources are sustained for longer periods. On the contrary, the high unemployment rate caused by mass closures of factories has the potential of creating conflicts over available resources (Shepherd 2011). It is unlikely that unemployed citizens, who have no chance of reemployment because of their limited or outdated skills, would stand by as natural resources that are obviously economically valuable and left intact because of environmental concerns.



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