Environmental issues and America’s skepticism around “green politics”

The unique American political system – Federal Republic – has had both positive and negative advantages over the course of its history. One area which clearly divides Americans, is the politics surrounding a changing global climate, which in turn impacts weather patterns (note: climate and weather are NOT the same thing; climate impacts the weather pattern).

Some areas of the US are greatly impacted by drought, while others have seen a dramatic increase in flooding, forest fires, tornadoes, and hurricanes, causing billions of dollars in damage, and drastically changing people’s lives.

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In spite of the fact that you can’t control the weather by state lines, the American political landscape is fragmented not simply by Federalism, but also by the ideology surrounding the science of climate change, most notable in “red” states which often oppose policies from “blue” states. States’ rights advocates argue that the Federal government should not impose strict rules and regulations when it comes to pollution, land use, urban development and agriculture – areas which have shown to affect our warming atmosphere due to their CO2 emissions.

Scientists and environmentalists, on the other hand, have for decades sounded the alarm regarding the increasing threat of a warming planet. Human life, indeed all life, on Earth is becoming increasingly more difficult, yet elected public officials have a hard time getting public support for possible solutions. Conspiracy theories, easily perpetuated by social media, coupled with coal and oil industries, have teamed up with cable news media friendly to their cause, to spread misinformation and confusion among constituents, all to the benefit of industries and their profit driven goals, while offering little solutions or comfort to an impacted population.

In this context, answer the following questions, using your textbook, as well as other sources to support your evidence and thought process. Simple “yes” or “no” answers do not suffice; please be clear in your answers and properly cite the sources you use. Include a bibliography at the end of the paper. Use of graphs, pictures or other embedded data to help you answer and discuss these questions is encouraged.

Are environmental issues better suited to national or state and local control?
Why have states and localities stepped in recently to tackle environmental issues impacting their localities?
What types of policies have they attempted to implement?
Which policies seem most likely to offer best solutions to the problems they’re seeking to solve?
Which states have been successful in managing the growing threats to their communities?
You should be able to find ample examples from California’s wildfires, flooding in the mid-western states and hurricanes hitting Florida and other Eastern US states.

Double space, use Times New Roman 12-point font
Use APA formatting
Use at least 5 (five) sources such as books, academic journals, recent news articles or websites (limit web sources to 2)
Approximately 1000 words, not including title page or reference page
Submit paper by due date via Canvas/online link
Rubric
ESSAY
ESSAY
Criteria Ratings Pts
This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeThesis
Clearly stated thesis – what is the topic you’ll be discussing?
5.0 pts
Very Good
Clearly demonstrates topic to be discussed
3.0 pts
Good
Demonstrates topic to be discussed
2.0 pts
Adequate
Adequately demonstrates topic to be discussed
0.0 pts
Inadequate
Does not complete the task
5.0 pts
This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeGrammar
Use of correct grammar and sentence structure as well as application of subject vocabulary – purpose and accuracy

This is a college level course; use of spell checker, proper capitalization of names, places, titles
10.0 pts
Very Good
Demonstrates precise, scholarly language and word choice, a defined voice, and a clear sense of audience; uses well-structured and varied sentences. Few or no errors in grammar, mechanics, punctuation and spelling.
8.0 pts
Good
Demonstrates appropriate scholarly language and word choice, with some evidence of voice and a clear sense of audience Uses well-structured and varied sentences Few errors in grammar, mechanics, punctuation and spelling that do not interfere with the message.
6.0 pts
Adequate
Generally uses correct sentence structure with some variety. Some errors in grammar, mechanics, punctuation and spelling that do not significantly interfere with the communication of the message
0.0 pts
Inadequate
No evidence of paragraphing or grouping of information, logical connections and transitional devices. Demonstrates impersonal or unclear and incoherent language and word choice, no awareness of audience, and major errors in sentence structure and usage. Errors so severe in grammar, mechanics, punctuation and spelling that they significantly interfere with the communication of the message and undermine the authority of the writer
10.0 pts
This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeCitations and style
5.0 pts
Very Good
Proper use of APA style citations, including bibliography, foot notes, in-text-citations etc., as applies, double spaced; cover page, abstract, name, date Shows understanding of appropriate use of citations and APA formatting
3.0 pts
Good
Proper use of APA style citations, including bibliography, foot notes, in-text-citations etc., as applies, double spaced; cover page, abstract, name, date Shows basic understanding of appropriate use of citations and APA formatting
2.0 pts
Adequate
Adequate use of APA style citations Shows basic understanding of appropriate use of citations and APA formatting but lacks consistency in citations
0.0 pts
Inadequate
Does not complete task
5.0 pts
This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeTopic Comprehension
Student shows good comprehension of topic chosen as well as use of data, statistics, relevant facts and proper sources to advance narrative and discussion of topic
5.0 pts
Very Good
Establishes and maintains an insightful controlling or central idea Well-developed and articulated thesis Demonstrates a thorough understanding of the purpose Clearly adapts the message to the audience Demonstrates a cohesive and unified structure with effective use of paragraphing or grouping of information, logical connections and transitional devices throughout
3.0 pts
Good
Establishes and maintains an insightful controlling or central idea Well-developed and articulated thesis Demonstrates a thorough understanding of the purpose Clearly adapts the message to the audience Demonstrates a mostly unified structure Consistent use of paragraphing or grouping of information, logical connections and transitional devices.
2.0 pts
Adequate
Establishes a controlling or central idea and demonstrates a basic understanding of the purpose; usually adapts the message to the audience; completes many parts of the task. Demonstrates a generally unified structure Inconsistent use of paragraphing or grouping of information, logical connections and transitional devices.
0.0 pts
Inadequate
Fails to establish a controlling idea or bottom line and demonstrates no understanding of purpose Demonstrates no adaptation to audience; completes no parts of the task. Fails to develop ideas, using no concepts or terms. Demonstrates no evidence of structure
5.0 pts
This criterion is linked to a Learning OutcomeMinimum sources
Min. sources required is 5, only 2 online sources allowed
5.0 pts
Very Good
Use of min. sources met Demonstrates clear understanding of scholarly choice of data and research articles Appropriate use of scholarly journals Supports ideas through proper citation
3.0 pts
Good
Use of min. sources met Demonstrates understanding of scholarly choice of data and research articles Good use of scholarly journals Generally supports ideas through proper citation
2.0 pts
Adequate
Use of min. sources not met Demonstrates some understanding of scholarly choice of data and research articles Lack of adequate academic and scholarly journals
0.0 pts
Inadequate
Does not complete task
5.0

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