Roles of Government, Business, and the Consumer in Environmental Protection:
The environment in simple terms could be described as the stimulus or external resources or conditions around which an organism will interact with. We can distinguish between three kinds of environments. These are the social environment, the natural environment and the built environment.
The natural environment consists of living and nonliving things that occur naturally like mountains, the wildlife, natural forests etc. on the other hand the social environment consists of the institutions, culture, as well as the people with whom we interact with. The built environment consists of man-made features like our homesteads, towns etc around which we live.
The environment as a whole needs to be conserved. There are various reasons as to why we need to conserve our environment. Some of these reasons include the fact that we need to preserve resources for future generations. In addition to maintain ecological balance we still need to conserve the environment. Thirdly but not last in order to live in a clean environment then we need to conserve it first. Due to the destructive nature of human beings various laws and or policies have been setup to stipulate the role of every stakeholder in this endeavor.
THE ROLE OF THE GOVERNMENT:
The main role of the government in environmental conservation is to pass environmental laws. Environmental law or environmental legislation is a body of the legal process. It involves a system of complex and interlocking conventions, acts or edicts, treaties, statutes, common regulations and policies, which are meant to protect the physical natural environment (short, 2003) which may from time to time be impacted, affected, or endangered by the activities of humans in a global perspective.
Some environmental legislation is designed to regulate the nature and quantity of negative impacts of human activities. Many countries and especially the European Union countries have been very successful on this field.
THE ROLE OF BUSINESSES:
Businesses and most importantly multi-national manufacturing industries have their role to play in conserving the environment. Since these companies are the greatest polluters of the environment they are supposed to produce goods responsibly. This can be done by any of the following means. Firstly they could use less pollutant sources of energy e.g. the use of solar energy instead of coal or oil.
In addition they could produce less pollutant materials that can perform the same task a good example would be the production of paper bags from wood pulp instead of plastic paper bags. In addition businesses especially these big companies could setup recycling plants to reduce the overall effect of pollutant material within our environment.
THE ROLE OF CONSUMERS:
Consumers have also their role to play in conserving the environment. In many cases consumers pollute the environment in two major ways. Firstly consumers pollute the environment by dumping both industrial goods and farm waste into the environment. Secondly consumers also degrade the environment through their day to day activities. In order to conserve the environment consumers should seek proper waste disposal methods. In addition in cases where they directly degrade the environment they should seek alternatives.
Bernie P. & Boyle, A.E. 2002. International law and the environment. 2nd Ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press.