After identifying the problem, a plan needs to be developed.
This is the second stage of the policy making process, and it is known as policy formulation. First of all, the Clean Air Act of 1970 was not the first policy passed that dealt with air pollution; there were other laws that preceded it. The first act was the Air Pollution Control Act of 1955, and it was regarded as a milestone in the history of air pollution law (Ahlers, 2015). Congress permitted various secretaries, including the Secretary of Health, to take action on the issue. Furthermore, Congress granted the Surgeon General permission to prepare research programs for developing methods to eliminate and reduce air pollution. Eight years later, the Clean Air Act of 1963 was passed that was implemented to “improve, strengthen, and accelerate programs for the prevention and abatement of air pollution.” Then in 1970, the Clean Air Act was modified once more to mean, “An Act to amend the Clean Air Act to provide for a more effective program to improve the quality of the Nation’s air.
” Lastly, in 1990, the Act was modified one last time. Named the Clean Air Act of 1990, it’s “An Act to amend the Clean Air Act to provide for attainment and maintenance of health protective national ambient air quality standards, and for other purposes (Hobby, 2014).” After all these policies were formulated they were regulated by federal agencies.
The regulation by federal agencies falls under the third step of the policy-making process, the policy adoption. In the case of the Clean Air Act, the U.S Environmental Protection Agency is in charge of making changes and modifications to the regulation.
Just as a legislature would undergo a process to pass a law, an agency goes through a similar process. In the case of EPA, the first step they went through was proposing the CAA. Research took place and the proposal was listed in the Federal Register, so the public could consider it and send their opinion. Then, after considering the comments of the citizens, they issue a final rule. The third, and last, step was codifying the regulation in the Code of Federal Regulations therefore making it official. (EPA, 2017) The fourth step of the policy-making process is policy implementation.
For the Clean Air Act, its implementation is generally split between the U.S EPA and the state governments. Moreover, within each state there is a branch of the EPA whose jurisdiction is that state only. Anyhow, due to the division, federal agencies set minimum standards that states are to enforce in their own way (Ballotpedia Staff, 2016). One of the most important standards every state has to meet is ensuring the air quality for six air