Presentation on theme: "George Gonzales. George A. Gonzales is an assistant professor in the department of political science at the University of Miami at Coral Gables, specializing."— Presentation transcript:
George A. Gonzales is an assistant professor in the department of political science at the University of Miami at Coral Gables, specializing in environmental policy. U.S. regulatory policy, and natural resource law. He has authored several works including: Urban Sprawl, Global Warming, and the Empire of Capital and The Politics of Air Pollution: Urban Growth, Ecological Modernization, and Symbolic Inclusion.
Policymaking Models Thesis Case Studies: Evolution of the U.S. Forest Service Establishment and Mission of the National Park Service Wilderness Preservation Policy of Yosemite National Park and Jackson Hole Creation of Redwood National Park Legislative Process of the Clean Air Act of 1990 Conclusion Implication of Corporate Power and the Environment
"Environmental policies are largely shaped by capitalist elites and generally serve the political and economic interests of corporate America."
Policy Formation Models Loci of Political Power Business Political Behavior Description of Policy Formulation Process Policy Outcomes PluralismNumerous Interest Groups and Elected Officials FragmentedInterest groups, rooted in different segments of society, competing vigorously Shaped by competing interest groups and elected officials Plural EliteVarious Interest Groups Coordinated to Limited Extent Through Trade Associations Different interest groups, especially business groups, domination different policy areas Special Interest determine the content of narrowly construed policies State Autonomy and Issue Networks State Officials supported by Issue Networks FragmentedState officials draw ideas, plans, and support from issue networks to develop policies Appointed and elected officials determine the content of policies Economic Elite Individuals of Wealth and Corporate Decision Makers Largely coordinated through policy-planning networks and other social and business institutions Economic elites, operating through policy- planning networks, dominate the policy formation process The policy preferences of economic elites predominate
Progressive era forest politics- Upper class and corporate-based policy network Use of forestry practices in public and private forests 1. Practical forestry developed in Upper Class and corporate community 2. Forest service supported by big business 3. Economic elite policy network molded forestry profession to serve industry
Economic Elite financed forestry in the United States. The Origins of American Forestry 1875 - Pinchot, American Forestry Association Pinchot and Graves - The White Pine Yale School of Forestry – 1900 The National Forest Commission 1891, no federal protection or management of forest reserves Bureaucratic fragmentation 1896, National Forest Commission 1897, Forest Management Act
Expanding Private Use of “Practical” Forestry Shift from preservation to profit Pinchot, Circular 21- “working plans for conservative lumbering” Timber lands owned by large timber owners Education toward forestry economy Practical forestry The Establishment of Practical Forestry Yale School of Forestry- financial forestry Pinchot, Collaborator program Transfer of the Forest Reserves American Forestry Association- Division of Forestry 1905-Bureau of Forestry in Department of Agriculture Future supply of timber, timber prices high Forestry practices
Utilitarian Policy Network- economic elite and support of large timber industries Conservation policies- did not succeed in spreading conservation practices American Forest Congress
The creation of the National Park Service furthered the interests of corporate America, and their mission continues to place those interests ahead of purely environmental concerns. The economic elite exert a significant influence on the policy and mission of the NPS.
Before the National Park Service Managed individually under the Department of the Interior Lack of direction Established in 1916 Businesses supported the NPS Stephen Mather chosen as first director
Political Tension Policy disagreement between Mather and Secretary Fall Mather used his corporate ties to push his agenda
The Mission of the National Park Service "Pure" preservationists advocate environmentalism "Use" preservationists favor tourism The Direction of NPS Policy Lane Letter of 1918 laid out guidelines for tourism use Mission 66 cemented the Lane Letter precedent and further expanded Parks' infrastructure and tourist facilities
The economic elite’s influence on two case studies. Yosemite National Park Jackson Hole National Park “All [two] case studies suggest that, in the case of achieving wilderness preservation policy goals, active economic elite political support is a necessary condition.”
Sierra Club: Created to preserve Yosemite. Supported by the Southern Pacific Railroad due to increased tourism. Originally under state stewardship. In 1905 Yosemite receded to national government. Most Sierra club members supported this, big businesses (like the Railroad) didn't show public support. Railroad supported park receding, but not publicly.
Rockefeller and Albright’s friendship began with renovations of Yellowstone. "The Rockefeller-Albright-Park Service-wilderness groups complex composed a policy-planning network that would influence wilderness policy throughout the middle portion of the twentieth century and is responsible for the incorporation of the Jackson Hole area into the national park system.”
Resigned as Park Director of Jackson Hole to become president of the U.S. Potash company. He was part of the "Power Elite" due to his status as president of the Potash Company. Appointed to various advisory positions during WWII that controlled the economy. Though no longer working for national parks, he lobbied for national park causes for the rest of his life and held positions on wilderness preservation groups, including several government positions.
Was under the control of U.S. Forest Service, failed to be included in Yellowstone National Park in 1919 due to cattle ranchers’ influence. National Parks could only survive if they were worthless for resource harvesting –Runte (Historian) The Wilderness Act of 1964 set aside 9 million acres of national forest, because there was very little timber. Jackson Hole was Economically valuable to cattle ranchers. Rockefeller and Albright’s influence overcame cattle ranchers’ opposition.
Rockefeller Jr. was saddened by development Albright had not been able to obtain funds to buy the area. Rockefeller wanted to protect $1,000,000 worth of land (Albright originally wanted $250,000). President Coolidge withdrew the land from Federal control and Rockefeller's company (the Snake River Land Company) purchased 35,000 acres at $1,400,000. Congress refused to accept the area to be a National Park. Even once FDR created the park, congress (somewhat successfully) tried to keep the park from being protected. Rockefeller used his economic influence to kill Barrett Bill and compromised with legislators to create the park.
"The Tetons, rising abruptly along the fault line a few miles south of Yellowstone [National Park], are one of the most distinctive mountain ranges in the world. Jagged and ice-hewn, much like the High Sierra, these peaks surpass even the Swiss Alps in the grandeur of their natural setting. Juxtaposed against the high-rising Tetons is Jackson Hole, a stretch of rolling green meadows and flatlands running to the northeast toward Yellowstone, forming a spectacular valley." (Swain, 1970, 114).
Economic elite have more power in the creation and management of national parks than the politicians do. In these cases the influence was positive.
Redwoods National Park founded in 1968 Two political groups involvedThe Save- the-Redwoods League The Sierra Club "Traditional" Conservationism: private funding, intrinsic value of nature, science, business "Radical/Progressive" Conservationism:
Founded in 1918 to preserve Redwoods for science and scenery "Traditional"/conservative environmental policies Lead by "economic elite" with influence, money, political power Self perpetuating leadership and ties Largely private funding (50% in 1940) Sensitive to commercial interests 1921 Redwood Preservation Bill, pressure from Pacific Lumber Co. Maintained traditional policies to maintain monetary/political support J. D. Rockefeller donated $2million in 1930
Originally, traditional conservationist, economic elite David Brower named first executive director in 1952 "Radical" environmentalist Aggressive policy changes and political confrontation ▪ Upper Colorado River Basin Issue 1950, wanted entire project ended Funded by membership dues Members elect leadership Pluralist policy change model
Post WWII boom put strain on Redwoods Soil Erosion around parks caused damage Controversy between Club and League over location and size League: Mill Creek Watershed (42,000 acres) Club: Redwood Creek (90,000 acres) US Park Service supports smaller park at Redwood Creek due to infrastructure at Mill Creek Laurence Rockefeller said to have brokered Redwood Creek compromise Ties to League (son of JDR), Horace Albright Advisor to LBJ Business associates with timber companies
Economic elite model brought about policy change Laurance Rockefeller Logging Companies around parks US Park Service caved to popular demand, and infrastructure Pluralist model less significant Votes of Club members not enough to bring about change
Why the New Legislation? Symbolic Palliatives for the Public or genuine progress? Which Policy Model? Pluralist Policy Combination of Business and Environmental Interests Economic Elite Policy Decidedly Pro-Business
Competing Coalitions Clean Air Working Group (Big Business) ▪ Limited or no restrictions National Clean Air Coalition (Pro Environment)_ ▪ Significant reform
SOME restrictions = Pluralism Real Restrictions? "Corporate liberals are willing to accept, and will even advocate, mild reforms of capitalism in exchange for social and political stability” Minimal Reforms = Corporate Control "The most significant environmental proposal to make it into the act - the permit trading system - conforms to the corporate view of a regulatory regime. ” SUM: Corporate control of policy procedure = Economic Elite
The Economic Elite theory is the only viable model "Corporate decision makers and other persons of wealth have been the most powerful influence in the management of the national forests and the national parks, as well as in the development of federal wilderness preservation and federal clean air policies."
Interaction between the environment and humankind will be mediated by the market Environmental advocates have had a limited effect on environmental policy in the U.S. "The federal government's most important environmental regulatory policies can be viewed as more symbolic than substantive.”