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Policy Success in an Age of Gridlock

Policy Success in an Age of Gridlock

  • How the Toxic Substances Control Act was Finally Reformed
  • Lawrence S. Rothenberg, University of Rochester, New York

Since 1990, polarization hindered changing environmental policy statutorily. Yet, in mid-2016 the Lautenberg Act regulating toxics - chemicals employed in commerce - was passed, winning business and environmental support. What might explain this? Has the Trump administration undercut the law's effects? Does the Act's passage portend more progressive actions? We show that the Act was a function of the status quo changing due to regulatory efforts abroad and in the United States, and from outside pressures on business. These influences impacted implementation, with the Trump administration not targeting toxics regulation analogous to other programs. Further, the processes we observe for toxics may not be unique.

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  • COPYRIGHT: © Lawrence S. Rothenberg 2018

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