The failure of environmental regulation in New York: The role of co-optation, corruption and a co-operative enforcement approach1


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Abstract

This study uses public-domain documents to describe the complicity of government actors (including current and former environmental regulators) with organized criminals, in facilitating crimes against the environment within two waste industries of New York State. Qualitative analysis results indicate that a combination of changing market forces, inadequate environmental regulation, and various failed policies and practices of the New York Department of Environmental Conservation can explain the presence, activities, and resilience of organized crime in the construction and demolition debris disposal, and also medical waste incineration industries, as well as provide some preliminary recommendations for preventing further regulatory failure in that state.

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