Environmental Politics and Policy

Photograph of government environmental regulation books.

Government environmental regulation books. (Image courtesy Daniel Bersak.)


MIT Course Number


As Taught In

Spring 2003



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Course Description

Course Features

Course Description

"Environmental Politics & Policy" explores the workings of environmental policymaking in the United States.

  • What are the big issues facing environmental policy?
  • How did we end up with the policies we have today?
  • Why does it take a crisis to move environmental policy forward?
  • Why do political factors - economic interests, social and political values, bureaucratic styles, ideologies, elections, etc. - always seem to overwhelm sound scientific and engineering judgment in determining policy outcomes?

Case studies ranging from cleaning up toxic waste pollution to endangered species protection probe the clashes between science and politics at local, state, and federal levels.

Related Content

Steve Meyer. 17.32 Environmental Politics and Policy. Spring 2003. Massachusetts Institute of Technology: MIT OpenCourseWare, https://ocw.mit.edu. License: Creative Commons BY-NC-SA.

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