Res Publica - Journal of Undergraduate Research


Over the last three decades, the environment has become established as a major issue on the American political agenda. Into the 1970s, rising public concern about threats to the environment resulted in changes in government policies at all levels. The US adopted an extensive number of major environmental and resource policies which imposed increasingly stringent standards on industry. New institutions, like the US Environmental Protection Agency, were created to manage environmental programs and spending was greatly increased for these programs. However, under the Reagan administration in the 1980s, a conservative policy agenda was implemented which accelerated devolution and resulted in large cuts in the budgets of the EPA and other agencies.