Ocean Dumping at Akutan: Impact of Policy on Decisions

by H. D. Van Veldhuizen, US Agency for Int Development, Washington, DC, USA,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Coastal Zone '87


The role of policy in management decisions is often overlooked by the general public during the decision-making process because of the public's greater interest in the environmental consequences of the proposed action. One notable exception to the obscured role of public policy in decision-making is an environmental impact statement recently prepared by EPA Region 10 on the ocean dumping permit application filed by the City of Akutan, Alaska. Policy, formulated in 1974 in response to litigation brought against EPA by the Natural Resources Defence Council, substantially influenced the decision-making process. Scientific data and public interest in the proposed action were of secondary importance in considering whether to issue the proposed permit.

Subject Headings: Decision making | Ocean engineering | Public participation | Environmental Protection Agency | Water pollution | Resource management | Urban areas | Litigation | Alaska | United States

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