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Environment Management

1.Who should manage the natural resources, the legislature, the public, scientists, or special interest groups and why?

2.What incentives and assistance could the US offer Brazil or African countries to keep their tropical rain forests from further harm? Should they do anything at all? Why or why not?

3.How should we assess the value of soil, water, and air resources?

4.What efforts, if any, should be made to hand off healthy soil and clean water and air to future generations? What might happen if they continue to be degraded?

Solution Preview

In determining the management of natural resources, you may want to consider the track record of each group. The legislature has a spotty record due to constant turnover. While some lawmakers are very environmentally conscious, they may be replaced by those who are not. The public, in theory represented by the legislature, has not done much better. We often get excited about helping the environment, but then lose interest when the going gets tough. Some individuals have dedicated themselves to living in harmony with nature, but they are few and far between. Such devotion is generally a consuming passion, leaving little time for work. Many people have trouble just making ends meet- they certain aren't going to be able to buy hybrid cars and install solar panels. Special interest groups have done a great deal to help the environment. Those that are dedicated to the cause have successfully lobbied for laws that save wildlife and habitat. There are of course those special interests that oppose environment movement (oil companies, etc.) So, to blindly hand over the environment to "special interests" is not the answer. Lastly, we can consider scientists. Many scientists are very concerned about the environment. Their research indicates that things are going to get worse, and they have all day long to think about how to solve these problems. However, scientists ...

Solution Summary

How natural resources should be managed and how we can assess their values.