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Environmental Policy, Public Interest and Political Market

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  • Paul Lanoie

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  • Jérôme Moreau
  • Georges A. Tanguay

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    Abstract

    In this article, we highlight the factors which influence governments in their decision to implement environmental policies of varying degrees of severity. We substantiate our arguments with analytical evidence from public interest theory and the economic theory of regulation (interest group theory). We demonstrate, through empirical analysis based on the policies of the 22 most developed OECD countries, that pressure groups have sufficient impact on environmental regulation for us to be sure that economic theory outweighs public interest theory. Ces dernières décennies, nous avons été témoins d'une prise de conscience collective sur les problèmes affectant la sauvegarde de notre patrimoine terrestre. Cependant, cette implication des pouvoirs publics dans ce domaine n'est pas uniforme. En effet, les législations adoptées à l'échelle de la planète varient encore grandement dans leur application, d'un pays à l'autre. Dans ce travail, nous nous intéressons à cet état de fait en mettant notamment en exergue les facteurs qui influencent les États à instaurer une réglementation plus ou moins stricte. Pour ce faire, nous étayerons notre argumentation grâce aux éléments d'analyse apportés par la théorie de l'intérêt public et par ceux de la théorie économique de la réglementation (théorie souvent mentionnée comme théorie des groupes d'intérêt). Nous nous apercevrons, au gré d'un travail empirique visant à analyser les politiques des 22 pays les plus développés de l'OCDE, que les groupes de pression ont un impact suffisant sur la réglementation environnementale pour nous assurer de la prépondérance de la thèse stiglerienne (théorie économique) sur la théorie de l'intérêt public ou général.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by CIRANO in its series CIRANO Working Papers with number 2001s-37.

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    Date of creation: 01 May 2001
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    Handle: RePEc:cir:cirwor:2001s-37

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    Keywords: Regulation; environment; public interest; political market; Réglementation; environnement; intérêt public; marché politique;

    References

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    1. R. Damania, 1999. "Political Competition, Rent Seeking and the Choice of Environmental Policy Instruments," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 13(4), pages 415-433, June.
    2. Nelson, Randy A, 1982. "An Empirical Test of the Ramsey Theory and Stigler-Peltzman Theory of Public Utility Pricing," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 20(2), pages 277-90, April.
    3. Mark Pearson, 1995. "The political economy of implementing environmental taxes," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 2(2), pages 357-373, August.
    4. Gene M. Grossman & Elhanan Helpman, 1992. "Protection For Sale," NBER Working Papers 4149, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    5. Hillman, Arye L & Ursprung, Heinrich W, 1988. "Domestic Politics, Foreign Interests, and International Trade Policy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 78(4), pages 719-45, September.
    6. Susmita Dasgupta & Ashoka Mody & Subhendu Roy & David Wheeler, 2001. "Environmental Regulation and Development: A Cross-country Empirical Analysis," Oxford Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 29(2), pages 173-187.
    7. Adam B. Jaffe et al., 1995. "Environmental Regulation and the Competitiveness of U.S. Manufacturing: What Does the Evidence Tell Us?," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 33(1), pages 132-163, March.
    8. Eliste, Paavo & Fredriksson, Per G., 2002. "Environmental Regulations, Transfers, and Trade: Theory and Evidence," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 43(2), pages 234-250, March.
    9. Fredriksson, Per G., 1998. "Environmental policy choice: Pollution abatement subsidies," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(1), pages 51-63, March.
    10. Tanguay, Georges A. & Marceau, Nicolas, 2001. "Centralized versus decentralized taxation of mobile polluting firms," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 327-341, October.
    11. Dion, Catherine & Lanoie, Paul & Laplante, Benoit, 1998. "Monitoring of Pollution Regulation: Do Local Conditions Matter?," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 13(1), pages 5-18, January.
    12. Kroszner, Randall S & Stratmann, Thomas, 1998. "Interest-Group Competition and the Organization of Congress: Theory and Evidence from Financial Services' Political Action Committees," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 88(5), pages 1163-87, December.
    13. Fredriksson, Per G., 1997. "The Political Economy of Pollution Taxes in a Small Open Economy," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 33(1), pages 44-58, May.
    14. Revesz, Richard L. & Stavins, Robert N., 2007. "Environmental Law," Handbook of Law and Economics, Elsevier.
    15. Grossman, Gene M & Krueger, Alan B, 1995. "Economic Growth and the Environment," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, MIT Press, vol. 110(2), pages 353-77, May.
    16. Jarque, Carlos M. & Bera, Anil K., 1980. "Efficient tests for normality, homoscedasticity and serial independence of regression residuals," Economics Letters, Elsevier, vol. 6(3), pages 255-259.
    17. Kaserman, David L & Mayo, John W & Pacey, Patricia L, 1993. "The Political Economy of Deregulation: The Case of Intrastate Long Distance," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 5(1), pages 49-63, March.
    18. Peter Hoeller & Andrew Dean & Masahiro Hayafuji, 1992. "New Issues, New Results: The OECD's Second Survey of the Macroeconomic Costs of Reducing CO2 Emissions," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 123, OECD Publishing.
    19. Per G. Fredriksson, 1999. "The Political Economy of Trade Liberalization and Environmental Policy," Southern Economic Journal, Southern Economic Association, vol. 65(3), pages 513-535, January.
    20. Hettige, Hemamala & Lucas, Robert E B & Wheeler, David, 1992. "The Toxic Intensity of Industrial Production: Global Patterns, Trends, and Trade Policy," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 82(2), pages 478-81, May.
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