Saving the Earth . Environmental Issues . Environmental Awareness. Arose in the 60’s and 70’s Dangers of pesticides DDT Wildlife Pollution Air and water quality.
Saving the Earth Environmental Issues
Environmental Awareness • Arose in the 60’s and 70’s • Dangers of pesticides • DDT • Wildlife • Pollution • Air and water quality
“There was a strange stillness. The birds, for example – where had they gone? Many people spoke of them, puzzled and disturbed…On the mornings that had once throbbed with the dawn chorus of robins… doves, jays…and scores of other bird voices there was now no sound; only silence lay over the fields and woods and marsh.” Popularity • Rachel Carson (marine biologist) • Silent Spring – 1962 • DDT wildlife Why do you think this book is called silent spring? Why should we care about these issues?
1970 = 1st Earth Day! • 1970 Nixon • Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) • Setting and enforcing pollution standards • Promoting research • Clean Air Act • established emission standards for factories and automobiles • Clear Water Act (1972) • Restricting pollutants in lakes and rivers
Nuclear Energy • Proponents (For) • Cleaner and less expensive alternative to fossil fule • Coil, oil, natural gas • Limited supply • Opponents (Against) • Risks of accidental radiation leaks • Japan
Debate on Environmentalism For Example: (Notes not needed) Regulating air pollution – good for environment However, it may drive up cost of goods, allowing fewer people to buy them, thereby decreasing jobs, and leading to poverty. (Externality is an unintended third-party consequence from an action. The negative externality of regulating air pollution in this case would be poverty). • Proponents • Coal fire-powered plants also put people at risk • Miners • Black Lung • Pollute Air • Opponents • Regulations and hidden costs • WHO • DDT saved 25 million lives • Ridding disease carrying pests Cost-Benefit Analysis - Externalities
“The American automobile is produced exclusively to the standards which the manufacturer decides to establish. It comes into the marketplace unchecked. When a car becomes involved in an accident, the entire investigatory, enforcement and claims apparatus that makes up the post-accident response looks almost invariably to driver failure as the cause…Accommodated by superficial standards of accident investigation, the car manufacturers exude presumptions of engineering excellence and reliability, and this reputation is accepted by many unknowing motorists.” Consumer Movement • Ralph Nader • Motor Vehicle Safety Act -1966 • Mandatory Safety Standards • Notify owners of defaults • Recalls
The battle is fought in the courts • In 1966 Carol Yannacone of Long Island, NY • DDT • Scientists • Successfully sued to halt use • “Court…is the only forum…”