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Critically evaluate two approaches to solving the problems of environmental pollution. Paper

Words: 3215, Paragraphs: 35, Pages: 11

Paper type: Essay , Subject: Environment

Critically measure two attacks to work outing the jobs of environmental pollution.

In the twentieth century rapid economic development has resulted in environmental jobs. Hence, environmental pollution has been a cause for concern for the past few decennaries. The nursery consequence caused by the release of C dioxide for illustration has become a chief focal point in the universe. Newspaper headlines, academic stuff and protests by assorted environmental militants have forced each one to be cognizant of their duty towards to environment. There has been an increasing divergency in the positions between ecologists and economic experts whereby the ecologists have a really pessimistic position of the environment in the hereafter, where they believe that the resources are consuming at really fast rate ; on the other manus the economic experts have an optimistic position. Supported by statistical grounds the economic point of position for the hereafter suggests that poorness degrees are cut downing, the natural resources will last for another 150 old ages

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The undermentioned paper will analyze the effects of pollution and the steps that have been taken to battle it. The sign language of the UN clime alteration model pact indicates that environmental protection is being taken earnestly and that people around the universe have reached a decision about the demand to command the fumes of nursery gases, such as C dioxide, ensuing in betterments in the environment and recognizing sustainable development.

Amongst the assorted definitions provided for pollution, one of the defines pollution as,

“…the release of harmful environmental contaminations, or the substances so release.”[ 1 ]

The fact must be noted that the substances themselves are non harmful, but when they are converted into smog due to solar energy ( sunlight ) that they have a harmful consequence on the environment and cause wellness jeopardies. Pollution is the consequence of ( negative ) human activity. There are two chief sorts of pollution – local and planetary pollution. Earlier pollution at the local degree was considered to be the lone job. Local pollution took the signifier of firing coal bring forthing fume and being risky for wellness. The attack to undertake pollution in the developed universe was to develop consciousness at the school degree. However, when some signifiers of pollution has a planetary consequence it is termed as planetary pollution. Besides whether something is pollution or non depends on the context it is being used. For case C dioxide emanations are referred to as pollution due to the harm they cause to the ambiance ensuing in climatic alterations. Other illustrations of pollution beginnings include atomic workss and oil oilers let go ofing toxic waste into the environment. Traditional signifiers of pollution include noise, air and H2O pollution. [ 2 ]

Prior to analyzing the attacks to work outing the job it is indispensable to understand the harmful effects of pollution. On assorted foreparts it has been argued that environmental pollution consequences in serious wellness jeopardies like increased hazard of malignant neoplastic disease, skin harm, interrupting the ecological balance and upsetting the climatic equilibrium. Nowadays everything ramping from drouths, inundations, and temblors to the gradual displacement in climatic alterations, for case, colder states anticipating abnormally high temperatures during summers, is being associated with pollution. Theorists have argued that there is small grounds to propose whether the alteration in clime will be a good thing or a bad thing. It is the perceptual experience that people have or that has been created by media that everyone believes that climatic alterations will non be contributing for economic growing.

Tacking the job of pollution has become a major concern for everyone. In economic theory ; markets coordinate the picks of people with respect to natural resource usage ; nevertheless ; environmental determinations are made outside the market and without cognition of the to the full priced goods and services. Gwartney et. Al ( 2000 ) place the absence of clearly defined and firmly enforced belongings rights and the ensuing deficiency of markets and decision-makers answerability as the nucleus issues of pollution and other outwardness jobs. They believe that authoritiess need to inquire themselves whether economic growing is harmful for the environment. Economic growing by and large leads to environmental betterments because people with higher incomes are willing to pay more for environmental quality.

Gwartney et. Al ( 2000 ) argue that the demand to take between economic growing and environmental quality may look obvious when economic activities affect the quality of the air or H2O. Governments in the developed states are under force per unit area from conservationist to protect the rights of those able to turn out that they have been harmed by pollution.

Surveies conducted by Donald Cursey finds that US and in other industrial states citizen’s support for steps to better environmental quality is extremely sensitive to income alterations. [ 3 ] Thus in economic footings, willingness to pay for dearly-won environmental steps is extremely elastic with regard to income. Income growing helps to increase the demand for environmental quality, while technological progresss help to take down the cost of cut downing both resource usage and pollution. Yet incomes above the poorness degree and an apprehension of the engineering are non plenty to protect the environment.

The job posed by pollution can be explained by utilizing the theory of market failure, which occurs when resources are non expeditiously allocated. This theory highlights the jobs faced by concerns ( manufacturers ) who feel that the cost of disposing waste is excessively high and that net incomes will be higher if costs are kept to a lower limit and disposing of waste through a least cost method is extremely efficient. Therefore harmonizing to the theory of market failures, the true cost to the society is much higher than the private cost of the manufacturer.


In the UK, the Environment Agency is responsible for the protection and betterment of the air, land and H2O. The study that hey published suggested the overall incidents of serious pollution were 20 % lower than in 2001. The cardinal industries responsible for the pollution of H2O, land and air are agribusiness, waste direction, the H2O industry and the chemical industry. But repeat wrongdoers included companies such as BP UK, Tesco, Tiles-R-Us, TotalFinaElf, Anglian Water, Thames Water, BT, Yoplait and Stationary Box. [ 4 ] It is a flooring disclosure to see the names of companies like Tesco and Tiles-R-Us in the list of pollution wrongdoers. Therefore when companies which deal with harmless merchandises like nutrient can besides terrible harm to the environment, H2O companies and agrarian activities would be doing so much more injury.

One manner to battle the job of halting companies and concerns from fouling the environment has been to impose mulcts. Harmonizing to the study published, the mean all right per company was raised by over one 3rd to ?8,744. Fines of more than ?20,000 rose by about 42 % compared to 2001 but the Environment Agency believes that the size of the mulcts are non sufficient to carry companies to alter their behavior. Amongst the assorted illustrations cited, one of them indicated how a company manager dumped dirt incorporating arsenic, quicksilver and nitrile, which has serious wellness deductions as it can do circulatory jobs, skin harm and increased hazard of malignant neoplastic disease. The sentence given to the manager was that he was jailed merely for one twelvemonth. Sing that his act could hold resulted in many human lives enduring from terrible wellness jobs and the punishment of merely one twelvemonth of gaol sentence does non look to be just.

It would non be right to fault the companies and concerns for non following with the ordinances. Businesss tend to reason that the systems and support construction is non in topographic point for them to dispose waste safely. In the absence of a proper substructure to make so, it would be incorrect to set the incrimination merely on one party. Another factor that discourages concerns from safely disposing waste is the cost factor involved. It has proved to be really expensive for concerns to dispose waste. This is particularly the instance in agriculture, where borders are tight.


Government ordinance is an alternate method of seeking to protect and continue the quality of the environment. Regulation nevertheless does non ever lead to ideal results, and it can be tremendously expensive. Regulation is non ever based o market systems, so it is capable to all the jobs associated with deficiency of information and deficiency of inducements that have plagued the socialist states. For case, in the instance of planetary heating, emanations from C dioxide from efficient combustion of all fuels instance no injury where they are emitted. No one’s rights are being violated by the invasion of harmful pollutant, yet these emanations are constructing up in the ambiance. Therefore this may necessitate that in the future ordinances must take this into history.

Some scientists and environmental groups argue that the menace of planetary heating is serious and that despite high costs, the states of the universe must enforce strong ordinances rapidly.

Many states have initiated air pollution control programmes in recent old ages. In England control was started by the establishment of smokeless zones and by controls based on the coloring material of the emitted fume and great motion has doubtless resulted. In Ontario, a more extremist attack was adopted, by set uping an discoverer of fouling beginnings and forbiding the puting up of new industrial concerns without an in agreement system of emanation control, and besides by mensurating the ‘air pollution index Various unfavorable judgments have been offered in footings of how pollution control steps are designed and implemented. It has been argued that frequently the

Some theoreticians believe that cut downing degrees of environmental pollution is non merely the duty for companies, but besides a societal duty of each and every occupant ; it can merely be possible if the persons besides portion the cost that is borne by manufacturers, by paying higher monetary values for the services and goods. The principle offered is that in return for higher monetary values, non merely is the single being offered better merchandises but besides a cleansing agent environment. It can be argued that even though it seems rational ; to bear down consumers higher monetary values for a safer environment, but it must be noted that companies gets subsidies, revenue enhancement benefits and many other signifiers of the authorities support which helps them to get by with the increased investing in engineering to bring forth environment friendly merchandises, nevertheless, single consumers are non paid higher rewards and wages to purchase environmentally friendly environment. The thought is to keep those people responsible who pollute the environment and do enforce some signifier of fiscal punishment. Some do believe that the solution by concentrating on doing the monetary value signal work more efficaciously, by taxing the manufacturer and supplying him with some signifier of fiscal inducement to put in would ensue in would be an extension of belongings rights and are all possible methods to battle the job of pollution.

Other possible methods that have been suggested are to publish tradable licenses. The thought is that licenses would let manufacturers to foul up to a certain degree. The licenses will besides assist in increasingly cut downing the overall degree of pollution.

Property Rights

In the UK, attempts are being made to widen the belongings rights. The implicit in thought of belongings rights is that if person is found to be doing harm to person else’s belongings, legal action can be taken against the person. In the environmental sense, Environment Agency has been set up who has ownership over the environment so to talk. In the US, Environmental Protection Agency ( EPA ) is one of the many administrations that have been set up to accomplish the above mentioned purpose. Property rights give legal standing to those who are threatened by pollution. Owners of land and other resources in a market economic system have the right to action anyone.

Significant part to environmental quality is made through the normal operation of belongings rights and a market system. However, it is sometimes hard to specify set up and protect belongings rights. In the instance of local pollution the belongings rights attack can cover efficaciously with the job, Most pollutants capable of doing serious harm are of this kind. However, if the effects of an emitted substance are both serious and widespread over a big population, or if the substance has many beginnings, so authorities ordinance may be more efficient.

Policymakers and analysts sing environmental ordinances should recognize that environmental quality is an economic good. Like nutrient, vesture, and shelter, it is something that people are willing to pay for, though non in limitless sums. In add-on policy shapers should recognize that the nexus between environmental quality and economic prosperity is of import. Environmental ordinances can exercise a powerful influence. Policymakers should non bury that enforceable belongings rights were for many old ages the chief signifier of modulating environmental pollution and leting presbyopic persons and groups to exert their visions of preserved natural countries. Over all belongings rights continue to play a positive function in the saving of a quality environment.


Property rights provide inducement to the proprietor to portion resource entree, which resource monetary values provide users with the inducement to conserve. In add-on ownership ensures that the things under their ownership are good taken attention of. Furthermore, belongings rights provide long-run inducements for maximizing the value of resource. Thus for illustration, if eroding reduces a land’s hereafter productiveness, is value in present twenty-four hours footings would fall and would finally ensue in the diminution of the owner’s wealth. Advocates in favor of belongings rights argue that belongings rights are defined, defensible and tradable. They are considered highly of import for the smooth operation of markets. Therefore when belongings rights are present and protected, resource markets encourage handiness and they besides promote resource preservation. Arguments which are non in favor of authorities ordinance are that there is no strong grounds to propose whether alterations in the earth’s cloud would make to heighten the warming effects of C dioxide or to countervail them. It is a general consensus of the scientists that the atmospheric theoretical accounts used to foretell planetary heating does non accurately integrate the effects of atmospheric H2O vaporization. Second, it has been questioned that for the past many decennaries added C dioxide has been associated with heating, but does this association mean that C dioxide caused warming. Further, it is besides being questioned if warming does happen would the sea degree rise or autumn. It is a known fact that warmer air carries more wet, and the added precipitation would construct up snow and the thickness of the ice on the polar caps would increase.

It has been argued that pollution controls ( ordinance ) has inauspicious economic effects as it diverts the resources from other growing activities. Some have argued that ordinance can hold really inefficient ways of exerting control. Thirdly pollution control can hold a negative impact on investing. If the production of certain goods is made more expensive, it leads to a rise in the monetary values of these goods and therefore reduces the sum of each demanded. Second as these controls are levied on new beginnings, directors are likely to maintain old works in usage instead than replace it with new and more efficient installation. Protecting our environment does non hold to set an terminal to economic advancement. Free markets in licenses to foul, like free markets for other resources, can guarantee that pollution is controlled at the lowest cost possible.

In drumhead it can be said that whether, the pick is made to utilize belongings rights or ordinances are used, they come with their set of advantages and disadvantages. Second, while the pick of belongings rights is making a sense of ownership and the chances of persons being more protective of something that they own is an interesting theory to star with. However, without ordinances being imposed from the authorities it would non be really effectual. Mechanisms would hold to be set in topographic point whereby the information is available to first of all assess the extent of harm and the costs involved. If the economic experts work on this based on the theoretical underpinning they would non hold entree to full information in footings of environmental harm while if the conservationists tend to work on the extent of harm they wouldn’t have complete information in footings of production costs etc. Thus what is required is a system where belongings rights are supported with ordinance to undertake the job of pollution. Fine degrees need to be increased to do the cause of salvaging the environment more meaningful.


Pollution is a cause for concern for states around the universe. The intent is to command depletion of natural resources and guaranting that society becomes cognizant of its duty towards the environment. Amongst many steps offered to battle the pollution crisis authorities ordinance and set uping belongings rights are the two chief attacks discussed. From the predating paragraphs it can be seen that each of the two attacks have their ain sets of virtues and demerits. While some have argued that authorities ordinance is the right manner frontward, nevertheless, it must be noted that this system is non without its drawback of holding unequal information. On the other manus, set uping belongings rights has given more power to the bureaus like EPA and EA to enforce mulcts and fiscal punishments on those who are responsible for doing pollution. While the system has been considered to be better than enforcing ordinance, nevertheless it has been argued that the mulcts imposed are non large plenty to be seen as a ‘penalty’ . Furthermore, when higher costs are transferred from concerns to consumers in the signifier of bear downing higher monetary values, the system is farther questioned. Despite the statements offered, it is a applaudable attempt by authoritiess and conservationists in extenuating the effects of environmental pollution. A measure in the right enunciation is most of import than non doing any attempt at all. Thus both the attacks must be followed together and new systems should be developed to guarantee that the consequences are achieved sooner than subsequently.


  1. Barrow, C.J. ,Environmental Management: Principles and Practice,( 1999 ) , Routledge, an imprint of Taylor and Francis Books Ltd.
  2. Elliott, J.A. ,An Introduction to Sustainable Development,( 1999 ) , Routledge, An Imprint of Taylor and Francis Books Ltd.
  3. Gwartney, James D. , Stroup, Richard L. , and Sobel, Russell S. ,Economicss Private and Public Choice,( 2000 ) , Ninth Edition, The Dryden Press.
  4. Goodstein, E.S. ,Economicss and Environment,( 2004 ) , John Wiley and Sons Ltd.

Diaries and Articles

  1. Buckley, T.J. , Schwab, M. , and Payne-Sturges, D.C. ,Closing the Research Loop: A Hazard based attack to for Communicating Results of Air Pollution Exposure Studies,( 2004 ) , Environmental Health Perspectives Vol 112 ( 1 ) January 2004
  2. Cursey, Donald,The Demand for Environmental Quality,Paper presented in January 1993 at the American Economic Association in California.
  3. Hutchinson, T.C. , and Meema, K.M. ,Effectss of Atmospheric Pollutants on Forests, Wetlands, and Agricultural Ecosystems,Ecological Sciences Vol. 16

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