As a zero-emission energy source of high density, nuclear power is harmless to air quality and does not require big land spaces. Moreover, it produces enormous amounts of energy with minimal waste. However, the use of uranium constitutes a danger to the environment. People working with nuclear power need to follow safety regulations to avoid accidents and health problems. The use of this power source is mostly reflected in national and international policies rather than local legislation. For example, nations define their energy use standards and provide emission and fiscal control. Since accidents and the unwise use of nuclear power negatively influence the net gain, these regulations help reduce the waste of finance. On the international level, it is necessary to allocate nuclear and financial resources equally to avoid the military use of nuclear energy and increase the global “clean” energy production over the long run.
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The multi-level governance may impede the effective use of natural resources. For example, since oceans are controlled by both states and non-governmental organizations, consequent conflicts concerning the use of ocean water can emerge. This problem is closely related to the multi-governance of fisheries, which leads to the unregulated use of fish resources. Forrest markets also exist on the local, regional, and global levels and are associated with complex trade networks. The solutions are connected with the strict policies defining the rights of all parties. For example, it is possible to establish marine protected areas. International organizations, such as Global Fishing Watch, may increase ocean surveillance and raise public awareness about decentralization and globalization problems. Finally, it would be appropriate to provide better state control over the forest and land resources. In this case, the roles and rights of stakeholders would be more definite.
Common pool resources (CPR) are goods or products that are subject to overuse, and therefore, may lead to the conflict of individual and group interests. Negative externalities are another economic term, which means that the consumption or production of a certain product imposes external costs for third parties. The problem of air pollution demonstrates both notions in the sphere of sustainability and ecological policy-making. For example, as a CPR, the air is subject to factory and plant emissions, which threaten the comfort and well-being of the population. Therefore, the major challenge of local and national policymakers is to issue regulations aimed at controlling emissions as negative externalities. For example, using alternative ways of waste treatment may be beneficial for factories and help avoid harm to the environment and people’s health.
Freshwater is essential for the planet, and its shortage may significantly harm the population, wildlife, and the environment. Pollution is one of the most serious challenges and is an important human-factor aspect; other difficulties include climate change and natural disasters. Therefore, effective policies on different levels of governance are required to protect the Earth’s freshwater resources. Local governments may allocate certain financial resources to protect and restore rivers and lakes. Similar strategies can also be used on the national level: for example, reconnecting lakes became a major ecological policy of China and already proved its effectiveness. On the international level, some countries (for example, Turkey and Israel) actively purchase and transfer freshwater resources. At the same time, for their more effective commercialization, it is necessary to pay special attention to vulnerable regions, such as sub-Saharan Africa.