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International Environmental Agreements - Essay Example

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In a while we will be discussing the details of these problems, with particular focus on the depletion of ozone layer, endangered species and hazardous wastes as described by science.
One striking feature of these environmental problems is being global in nature. It does not merely cover one territory and cannot be entirely solved by an effort of one or few countries. Environmental science has coined the term, "transboundary" to refer to both environmental problems and solution which cross borders (David Humphreys 201). The term is specifically used for the environmental policy of protected areas, in which "a viable population of an endangered species, or provide sufficient land area for a vulnerable ecosystem, in a way that simply might not be possible by national level action alone" (David Humphreys). The global nature of the problem indeed calls for a global solution. The question that this paper wishes to answer is whether this global environmental problems can be solved effectively by international agreements. But before this, it would be fitting to ask if an international agreement is in the fist place possible. On the study of three environmental problems plus climate change, we will look at the definition of effectiveness of environmental policy to provide us with the standard of assessing current international policies. We will also need to take a look at how the problems are defined such as what exactly do the terms 'depletion of ozone layer', 'endangered species' and hazardous wastes mean. To arrive at the conclusion, we will have a close examination of the international agreements done so far and assess them carefully of indeed they have been effective. Lastly, we will assess the strengths and the constraints of international agreement on environmental policies.
It is through the analysis of responses to these three potent environmental problems that we will be able to expound on the subject matter.
Main Body
What is an Effective Environmental Policy
A Warming World, a book that tackles on the climate change issue and the policies adopted by the international community as a response. In the discussion of such environmental issue, the term "effective" was given clarity. In our analysis of which can be an effective environmental policy at least pertaining to depletion of ozone layer, endangered species and hazardous wastes, we will be relying on this definition.
The term effectiveness connects two concepts: the aim and the outcome. It is inevitable to associate the term with the "desired outcome" (A. B. David Humphreys, 37). "A policy may be considered to be effective if it changes the behavior of actors in a desired direction, such as cutting emissions of greenhouse gases" (A. B. David Humphreys, 37). The term can actually have a weak or a strong meaning. The strength depends on the degree of behavioral change as a result of the policy. A weak definition involves behavioral changes which are minor and "insufficient to address the problem at hand" (A. B. David Humphreys, 37). On the other hand, the strong notion of effectiveness entails "fundamental shifts in behavior that produce the desired outcome that the policy was intended to realize" (A. B. David Humphreys, 37). Referring to environmental pol ...Show more


The four leading environmental problems are climate change, depletion of the ozone layer, endangered species and hazardous wastes. The rise of such problems can be safely attributed to the advent of industrialization and the use of materials and chemicals which are found to be harmful to the environment.
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International Environmental Agreements essay example
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