Environmental Protection: A Priority for American Energy Policy
This article provides an analysis from a European perspective of the influence of environmental objectives on American energy policy. It describes how environmental legislation, such as the Clean Air Act, NEPA and the Surface Mining Act, constrains growth in the energy sector by way of cost increases in energy production and use and interference with, the pursuit of energy security (e.g., through constraints on coal extraction and use, nuclear development and off-shore exploration). At present, despite the Bush Administration's restrained position on the greenhouse effect, environmental objectives appear to have a high priority in the setting of energy policy. Thus, even before the current Gulf crisis, there was a growing interest in energy conservation as a policy objective.
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