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United States Nuclear Energy Policy2

United States Nuclear Energy Policy2 - Anthony Milne PSCI...

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Anthony Milne PSCI 3143 United States Nuclear Energy Policy The Occurrence of Nuclear Power in the World’s Most Powerful Country I. Introduction In today’s society, the issues surrounding energy have become of ever increasing importance and concern. More than ever the arms of energy issues have stretched into everyday life with everything from concerns related to the use of limited natural resources and their environmental impacts to political and economical issues such as dependence on fossil fuels. The web of issues surrounding the provision of energy is one that is extremely complex and vast, and with respect to the United States, extremely important. One area of energy provision that must not be overlooked is that of nuclear energy. Although the idea of nuclear energy is nothing new, recent environmental and political concerns such as global warming and oil dependence have begun to raise questions about the part of nuclear energy. Inferences into the United State’s nuclear energy use have historically lead by negative references to nuclear power accidents of the past such as Pennsylvania’s Three Mile Island incident or the Soviet Union’s Chernobyl reactor meltdown, but with modern advancements in efficiency and safety as well as global situations, the idea that the United States is not using enough nuclear energy has become appealing. With emphasis on the society and state centered approaches to policy, this paper will attempt to explain the United State’s current use of nuclear power. It will then attempt to justify these approach-based arguments with the use of specific evidences to answer the primary question of why does the United States not use more nuclear power? Finally, all of this will be done to make a case for the advancement and
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expansion of nuclear power in the United States followed by appropriate policy suggestions on how to do so. II. Theories In considering the question of why the does the United States not use more nuclear power, the use of the state and society-centered approaches to political policy are vital. Valuable tools in examining the presence of political policy, the state and society centered approaches are explanations or blueprints that show why these arrangements are in place. The society-centered approach is one that explains political policy on the basis of the will of the people or individuals of society. The jumping off point and defining aspect of this approach lies in the characterization of societal interests and preferences. This formation of society’s wants and desires is based on the preferences of the individual citizens that make up society (Kim, 2007). This approach says that individual’s will consolidate and group together on the basis of their preferences to form societal and political interest groups. Essentially, these groups will contact and interact with political institutions to lobby for the establishment of policies that are in their interest (Kim, 2007). The pressure of interest groups on political institutions, usually in the form of
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