Document Type



Legal sanctions have traditionally been created and enforced in part because they are thought to channel human behavior in a desired direction. With the increase in governmental activity resulting from the complexities of metropolitan life, a host of social welfare regulations designed to insure minimal standards of health and safety have been generated. Any efforts to protect and improve the environment have been formulated by balancing economic and environmental priorities. To date, most regulations have relied on criminal sanctions and injunctions for enforcement. Neither of these sanctions has proven to be an effective deterrent to polluters or an effective means of implementing environmental policy.

In considering the usefulness of administratively imposed civil money penalties as the primary means of encouraging compliance with environmental objectives, this comment will demonstrate that the civil money penalties are designed to reduce environmental pollution rather than to punish violators. Further, it will be shown that traditional sanctions, that is, the injunction, and the criminal imposition of money penalties are often slow and ineffective in encouraging environmental compliance. Finally, this comment will illustrate that the degree of environmental compliance will be influenced by the amount of the penalty imposed and the procedure used to impose and collect them.

Publication Date


Included in

Law Commons



To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.