Environmental Policy: Politics, Economics, Law, and Ethics

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Students in this concentration examine diverse environmental policies through fields including politics, economics, law, and ethics. Environmental Policy as a concentration is inherently interdisciplinary given the diversity of environmental and natural resource challenges facing humanity. Policy interventions are often intended to diminish problems that vary in scale, scope, intensity, severity, and complexity. Most environmental, climate, and natural resource scarcity challenges demand a suite of policies to encourage significant improvement and eventual protection of the environment and human health. 

Examples of policies that might be intended to be solutions include: statutory mandates, regulations, & executive orders; aspirational laws designed to encourage technical innovation; tax and subsidy standards designed to change consumer behaviors; diminishing property rights to pollute; prior informed consent and right-to-know standards; planning and zoning standards; land use regulations; urban growth and redevelopment regulations; public transit requirements; compensation standards; regulation of chemical mixtures; labeling and requirements; food safety standards; air, water, and soil pollution limits; CO2 equivalent emission standards; parks and protected area management policies; and sustainable resource management standards for water, grazing lands, forests and wildlife. 

Courses relevant to this concentration are found in Yale College social science disciplines, supported by offerings in Law, Business, Medicine, Public Health, and Art and Architecture. Students might double major in EVST and any of the disciplines mentioned above, including Ethics, Politics, and Economics (EPE) to deepen their understanding of environmental policy. 

Students interested in the Five-Year Program at YSE should explore courses offered in the  Environmental Policy Analysis specialization.