The Environmental Policies Supported By the Republican Party of the USA
With a history spanning over 160 years, the Republican Party has been supporter of “free labor, free land and free men”. As the first to support the protection of the environment, the Republican Party has been promoting conservationist values for almost 100 years. Here is a brief history of the environmental policies of the Republican Party from the start of the 20th century to the present day.
Initial environmental support from the Republican Party, and its transition to the 21st century
At the beginning of the 20th century, Republican president Theodore Roosevelt was a strong supporter of the protection of the environment, and his conservationist views materialized in the creation of the National Park Service. The Republican Party’s conservationist values continued throughout the 20th century, with president Nixon being responsible for creating the Environmental Protection Agency in the 1970.
In recent years, the popular California Republican Senator Arnold Schwarzenegger obtained the support of 16 other states and went on to sue both the Federal Government and the United States Environmental Protection Agency in order to have the right to set the standards for vehicle emission higher than the Federal Standard. In the present day, California is entitled to having a higher vehicle emission standard under the Clean Air Act.
The shifting in environmental policies
With the Democratic Party’s new support for the environment, the Republican’s policies have begun to shift. With the Democratic president Bill Clinton’s refusal to send the Kyoto Protocol in the US Senate in order to be ratified, as he considered it to be unfair to the USA, so did the Republican’s environmentalist views start to change. Republican president George W. Bush has also refused to have the Senate ratify the Kyoto Protocol, declaring that he thought of it to target Western industrialized nations, being unfair to the USA especially and favoring the most important Global South polluters – China and India.
Since 2000, the Republican Party has been in favor of supporting both development and environmentalism. They support solving environmental problems through market-based solutions. Their belief is that both economic prosperity and environmental protection are to work together, with the government supporting the development of environmentally-friendly technologies by using market-based incentives.
The current views of the Republican Party are more inclined towards the development of alternative fuels to replace fossil fuels. They are more in favor of investing in order to achieve energy independence rather than to try and reduce the greenhouse gas emissions by the current energy-generating technologies.