Moving the Earth: Cooperative Federalism and Implementation of the Surface Mining Act

Moving the Earth: Cooperative Federalism and Implementation of the Surface Mining Act

Moving the Earth: Cooperative Federalism and Implementation of the Surface Mining Act

Moving the Earth: Cooperative Federalism and Implementation of the Surface Mining Act

Synopsis

This empirical study provides an introduction to the dynamics of regulatory federalism and is the first book to focus on the major issues involved in the regulation of surface mining. A broad spectrum of contributors, most with first-hand experience, describe the forces that have shaped the implementation of the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act since 1972. They offer varying perspectives for understanding technological and market considerations, intergovernmental procedures and problems, interest group forces, the role of the courts, Congress, and the states.

Excerpt

The purpose of this book is to provide a perspective on policy implementation through a detailed analysis of experiences from one important environmental policy. This is a book about implementation of the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act of 1977. Its approach differs from that of most other texts in that not only do the contributors have widely differing points of view on the implementation of the Surface Mining Control and Reclamation Act (SMCRA), but also many of them are active participants in one or more aspects of its implementation. The authors are often involved in and committed to seeing SMCRA implemented in a fashion that is consistent with their own perspectives. This means that the views offered in this book will reflect the ambiguities and disagreements over both means and ends that attend any discussion of a significant public policy issue.

Some contributors offer the perspective of academic observers, presenting a scholarly discussion of the issues that surround the successes and failures of SMCRA. Others write from the perspective of involvement in the implementation struggle. It is our hope that this mix of views will help the student develop an appreciation of the complexities of policy implementation and come to understand that policy implementation does have consequences; it is a process of interaction among cohorts of engaged actors who have a commitment to making public policy work, albeit often to advance their own interests.

Even though it contains advocacy chapters, this is not an advocacy book. These chapters advocate opposing views. This is a book about concrete manifestations of theoretical formulations. It is an empirical case study of policy implementation.

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