THE INFLUENCE OF INDUSTRIALIZED NATIONS ON ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES: AN EXAMINATION OF WHAT THE EUROPEAN UNION AND UNITED STATES HAVE DONE WITH RESPECT TO BRAZILIAN DEFORESTATION
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Climate change is arguably the toughest environmental challenge of the 2P1 century. When kept healthy, forests, such as the Amazon Rainforest in Brazil, play a key role in mitigating the effects of climate change. Unfortunately, industrialized nations-such as the European Union and the United States-are both directly and indirectly contributing to Amazonian deforestation. This thesis assesses the scope of these actions. It examines the past actions taken by the EU and the US that have brought the issue to this point, while also looking at how these actions are exhibited directly over the pressing issue of deforestation in Brazil. This thesis also presents an overview that helps explain what makes a nation "environmental," as well as the particular drivers-such as politics, economics, and consumption-that can create ambiguous outcomes in whether an industrialized actor is purposefully exhibiting environmental tendencies or if it is doing so accidentally through lack of action. Through looking at one of the most concrete pieces in the fight against climate change-Brazilian deforestation-this thesis poses the question, what have the worlds two leading powers actually done? To answer this question, it becomes necessary to break down the primary research question into a more pointed question. This ·then leaves the question: how have their economic, political, and consumer ties to Brazil affected the issue to date? If the strategies are different, why are they different?