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Environmental policy, government, and the market

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  • Cameron Hepburn

Abstract

Environmental policy is made in a context of both market failure and government failure. On the one hand, leaving environmental protection to the free market, relying on notions of corporate social responsibility and altruistic consumer and shareholder preferences, will not deliver optimal results. On the other hand, nationalizing the delivery of environmental protection is likely to fail because nation states rarely have the depth and quality of information required to instruct all the relevant agents to make appropriate decisions. Thus, as for many areas of policy, appropriate models of environmental intervention will lie between these two extremes. While it is impossible to specify general rules concerning the precise form of intervention, in part because the type of intervention depends upon value judgements, this paper sets out some of the considerations that are particular to environmental policy, and explores several principles for policy design, including information, coordination, and principal--agent problems, with a particular focus on the international context. Copyright 2010, Oxford University Press.

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1093/oxrep/grq039
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Oxford University Press in its journal Oxford Review of Economic Policy.

Volume (Year): 26 (2010)
Issue (Month): 4 (Winter)
Pages: 734-734

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Handle: RePEc:oup:oxford:v:26:y:2010:i:4:p:734-734

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Web page: http://oxrep.oupjournals.org/

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Cited by:
  1. Rosetta Lombardo, 2011. "The Role Of Corporate Social Responsibility In Consumer Behaviour: An Unresolved Paradox," Working Papers 201115, Università della Calabria, Dipartimento di Economia, Statistica e Finanza (Ex Dipartimento di Economia e Statistica).
  2. Burtraw, Dallas & Woerman, Matt, 2013. "Economic ideas for a complex climate policy regime," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 40(S1), pages S24-S31.
  3. Burtraw, Dallas & Woerman, Matt, 2013. "Economic Ideas for a Complex Climate Policy Regime," Discussion Papers dp-13-03-rev, Resources For the Future.

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