PS 3480, Environmental Politics, October 1, 2012



Next time: Quiz

Wilderness & Urban Land

1. Wild By Law: How Ideas become public policy



2.  Urban land


        ...  is the most intensely used land in developed nations



  •  American Land use regulation: Zoning

  • Urban sprawl


  • What Public Policies Contribute to Sprawl?

  • Housing, Transportation, Special Districts, Interjurisdictional Competition


How does the United States Govern Its Water?

1. Water in America


        Water and Economic development



        Water used for transportation, power, mining, waste disposal, and irrigation



       Water Problems:


                The west: water scarcity


                The east: water pollution


                Shorelines: Access


                Suburban development: drainage


2.  Water Pollution


  • A wider range of pollutants can be carried by water than air


  • Two sources of pollution: Point  &  Non point

  • Water Quality Today



3.  The Politics of Water

        Access to water can be controlled more easily than access to air


                Water can be cleaned before people use it



         Many water projects are expensive public construction projects that have high stakes, for developers, industries, and construction interests.


        Dams, levees, harbors, sewers, water filtration plants


Water projects are local - so that elected politicians have strong incentives to seek and claim credit for them


        Dams, levees, harbors, sewers, water filtration plants



4.  Water and Environmental Policy

a.  The Conservation Era 


Urban water: St. Louis


Federal responsibility


        1899: Rivers and Harbors Act



b.  The Environmental Era 


         Policy succession: from information to grants and command and control

        1948: Republicans put forward a federal water pollution policy proposal


        1956: Water Pollution Control Act; grants to the cities
                          for wastewater treatment

        1965: Water Quality Act

        1972: Clean Water Act


        1989: The Politics of Disaster: the Exxon Valdez &
          Oil Pollution, Prevention, Response, Liability and Compensation Act


        The Politics of Fear; Safe Drinking Water in the 1990s



        Red v. Blue: Wetlands



        The Dead Zone