I believe the EPA does a lot in order to help others preserve our ecosystems. While they may have the ability to do more with their power and placement, this can be said about most companies in the world today. Someone can always be doing more.
That being said, the EPA keeps thorough day to day updates on projects underway to help our environment, they are accessible to the public, and are thorough in explanations of leading problems inflicting human and environmental health today.
I would say that the amount of effort they place on their cause is helpful. I think bringing about awareness is half the battle and the EPA seems to have a firm grip on that task (at the very least).
I’m very glad the EPA exists, and do find their efforts to be effective in protecting the environment, but I think that it is unfortunate that their efforts are dependent upon funding. I think that if funding were not an issue, the EPA would have a greater capacity to include animals/environments that really need their protection, but can’t get it because they are less of a priority than others. Basically, if they had more money, they’d be more effective in protecting the environment because they’d be able to protect more of it.
It is indeed beneficial that the US federal government has an agency specifically for protecting the environment, but I have heard complaints about the EPA lacking full effectiveness because they are such a huge bureaucracy. In my past, I have been employed with non-profit environmental protection organizations, and have heard co-workers comment that the EPA is simply a “rubber stamp agency.” This particular critique was in reference to the EPA approval of 56 surface mining requests from the coal mining industry over the summer of 2009. Since then, most of those approvals have been retracted and denied, but why were they approved first, and then denied? It seems like an inefficient and expensive system. However, at least it exists as a regulatory agency. Otherwise those mountains would have been surface mined probably years ago.
The environment is being harmed, and the EPA is not doing everything feasible to stop that from being so — in that regard, they are not “effective.” That’s not entirely the EPA’s fault, as lawmakers have been reluctant to increase regulations, and the EPA has to weigh protecting the environment against the country’s economic interests. For sure, it could be more effective than it is right now.
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