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Canada's voluntary ARET program: Limited success despite industry cosponsorship

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  • Werner Antweiler

    (University of British Columbia)

  • Kathryn Harrison

    (University of British Columbia)

Abstract

The Accelerated Reduction|Elimination of Toxins (ARET) Challenge was a voluntary program initiated in 1994 by the Government of Canada. Unlike the U.S. 33|50 Program, ARET involved industry partners in negotiation and cosponsorship of the program, with the intention that early involvement would yield stronger commitment to voluntary reductions. We review the program's self-reported success in delivering emissions reductions. For 17 ARET substances that were also covered by Canada's National Pollutant Release Inventory, we employ treatment effects regressions to control for self-selection bias. We find evidence that ARET accelerated emission reductions in five cases, slowed reductions in two cases, and had no discernible effect in ten cases. Industry cosponsorship apparently did not have the intended effect and instead resulted in program features such as data confidentiality that significantly undermined the program's credibility. © 2007 by the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1002/pam.20284
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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. in its journal Journal of Policy Analysis and Management.

Volume (Year): 26 (2007)
Issue (Month): 4 ()
Pages: 755-774

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Handle: RePEc:wly:jpamgt:v:26:y:2007:i:4:p:755-774

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Web page: http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/34787/home

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  1. Werner Antweiler, 2003. "How Effective Is Green Regulatory Threat?," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, American Economic Association, vol. 93(2), pages 436-441, May.
  2. Eric W. Welch & Allan Mazur & Stuart Bretschneider, 2000. "Voluntary behavior by electric utilities: Levels of adoption and contribution of the climate challenge program to the reduction of carbon dioxide," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 19(3), pages 407-425.
  3. Anna Alberini & Kathleen Segerson, 2002. "Assessing Voluntary Programs to Improve Environmental Quality," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 22(1), pages 157-184, June.
  4. Stephen J. Decanio & William E. Watkins, 1998. "Investment In Energy Efficiency: Do The Characteristics Of Firms Matter?," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(1), pages 95-107, February.
  5. Lori Snyder Bennear, 2007. "Are management-based regulations effective? Evidence from state pollution prevention programs," Journal of Policy Analysis and Management, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., John Wiley & Sons, Ltd., vol. 26(2), pages 327-348.
  6. Gamper-Rabindran, Shanti, 2006. "Did the EPA's voluntary industrial toxics program reduce emissions? A GIS analysis of distributional impacts and by-media analysis of substitution," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 52(1), pages 391-410, July.
  7. Arora Seema & Cason Timothy N., 1995. "An Experiment in Voluntary Environmental Regulation: Participation in EPA's 33/50 Program," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 28(3), pages 271-286, May.
  8. Khanna, Madhu & Damon, Lisa A., 1999. "EPA's Voluntary 33/50 Program: Impact on Toxic Releases and Economic Performance of Firms," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 1-25, January.
  9. Lutz, Stefan & Lyon, Thomas P & Maxwell, John W, 2000. "Quality Leadership When Regulatory Standards Are Forthcoming," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(3), pages 331-48, September.
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