The trend of harmful carbon emissions being released into the atmosphere has evolved into a major societal problem in the United States of America. As a result, the Obama administration has made significant efforts towards the implementation of important solutions that should be implemented on a global scale in addition to the local focus. Compounded data reveals the increasing concerns arising from the utilization of carbon based fuels, for instance, as seen in the Pennsylvania coal fired power plants. Hence, this necessitated the implementation of energy policies aimed at cutting down on the current level of emissions, not only in the US but also on the global perspective.
The first step in the formulation of these policies involved the introduction of a campaign geared towards reducing the utilization of carbon based fuels. These campaigns have been carried out by influential environmental groups. These groups proactively called for the phasing out carbon based fuels, for example, oil and coal (Clemmitt, 2009). While phasing out these options, the environmental groups’ initiatives led to numerous political personalities and nations taking up the matter to international level. The aim was to promote the use of technological innovations through energy efficiency, renewable energy resources, carbon capture, electrical transmission, smart grid, aimed at accommodating variable energy sources like wind, solar and hybrid vehicles (Clemmitt, 2009). These strategies essentially aim at changing the perspectives of the common man through use of technological inducements. The essence of inducements is to get people to change their minds and avoid the use of force (Stone, 1988). This suggests that the main aim is to change the existing behavioral/political factors leading to adoption of carbon fuel as a preferred energy alternative.
In a bid to discourage corporations and manufacturers who are major contributors in the utilization of carbon fuels, the policy initiatives like Energy Policy Act, Kyoto Protocol, Carbon Tax, and Global Warming Solutions Act aim at discouraging these corporate entities from polluting the environment. “The house recently passed a comprehensive energy bill that would institute a ‘cap-and-trade’ system imposing an increasingly tight cap on carbon emissions by requiring polluters such as electric power companies to buy emission permits or switch to cleaner energy sources” (Clemmitt, 2009). Such advances have instrumental in preventing the spread of air pollution to levels that are not sustainable.
The introduction of key policy initiatives have led to the prohibition of nations from going past the recommended safe levels of emissions or risk the possibility being subjected to significant sanctions. “They are more properly thought of as strategies for structuring relationships and coordinating behavior to achieve collective purposes” (Stone, 1988). However, meeting a collective purpose has been subjected to significant challenges as a result of emerging conflicts of interest and unwillingness for some parties to comply positively. Hence, these are some of the challenges being faced in the actual implementation of the proposed policy initiatives due to weaknesses in some of the enforcement strategies. In order to foster a desired level of enforcement agreeing members were required to become signatories to the introduction of significant carbon emission cuts and show commitment towards attainment of the policy initiatives. Finally, the topic of carbon fuels continues to be a major factor in the United States and other environmental corporations.
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