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Enforcement and Environmental Compliance: A Statistical Analysis of the Pulp and Paper Industry

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Author Info

  • Jay P. Shimshack
  • Michael B. Ward

Abstract

This paper explores empirically the impact of changes of enforcement efforts on environmental compliance. Our strategy is to link observed fines and other enforcement actions to subsequent compliance behavior. We find that, on the margin, the impact of a fine for water pollutant violations is about a two-thirds reduction in the statewide violation rate in the year following a fine. This surprisingly large result obtains through the regulator’s enhanced reputation. We find that the deterrence impact on other firms in a state is almost as strong as the impact on the sanctioned firm. In contrast to fines, non-monetary sanctions contribute no detected impact on compliance.

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File URL: http://ase.tufts.edu/econ/papers/200414.pdf
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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Department of Economics, Tufts University in its series Discussion Papers Series, Department of Economics, Tufts University with number 0414.

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Date of creation: 2004
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:tuf:tuftec:0414

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Related research

Keywords: Fines; Reputation; Pollution; Compliance; Enforcement;

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References

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  1. Sarah L. Stafford, 2000. "The Impact of Environmental Regulations on the Location of Firms in the Hazardous Waste Management Industry," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 76(4), pages 569-589.
  2. Eric Helland, 1998. "The Enforcement Of Pollution Control Laws: Inspections, Violations, And Self-Reporting," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 80(1), pages 141-153, February.
  3. Mary E. Deily & Wayne B. Gray, 1989. "Enforcement of pollution regulations in a declining industry," Working Paper 8912, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland.
  4. Stafford, Sarah L., 2002. "The Effect of Punishment on Firm Compliance with Hazardous Waste Regulations," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 44(2), pages 290-308, September.
  5. Magat, Wesley A & Viscusi, W Kip, 1990. "Effectiveness of the EPA's Regulatory Enforcement: The Case of Industrial Effluent Standards," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 33(2), pages 331-60, October.
  6. Chamberlain, Gary, 1980. "Analysis of Covariance with Qualitative Data," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(1), pages 225-38, January.
  7. George J. Stigler, 1974. "The Optimum Enforcement of Laws," NBER Chapters, in: Essays in the Economics of Crime and Punishment, pages 55-67 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  8. Nadeau, Louis W., 1997. "EPA Effectiveness at Reducing the Duration of Plant-Level Noncompliance," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 54-78, September.
  9. Ronald J Shadbegian & Wayne B Gray, 2001. "When Do Firms Shift Production Across States to Avoid Environmental Regulation?," Working Papers 01-18, Center for Economic Studies, U.S. Census Bureau.
  10. Sah, Raaj K, 1991. "Social Osmosis and Patterns of Crime," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 99(6), pages 1272-95, December.
  11. Louis Kaplow & Steven Shavell, 1991. "Optimal Law Enforcement with Self-Reporting of Behavior," NBER Working Papers 3822, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  12. Gray, Wayne B. & Deily, Mary E., 1996. "Compliance and Enforcement: Air Pollution Regulation in the U.S. Steel Industry," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 96-111, July.
  13. Pakes, Ariel & Pollard, David, 1989. "Simulation and the Asymptotics of Optimization Estimators," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 57(5), pages 1027-57, September.
  14. Stern, Steven, 1992. "A Method for Smoothing Simulated Moments of Discrete Probabilities in Multinomial Probit Models," Econometrica, Econometric Society, vol. 60(4), pages 943-52, July.
  15. Polinsky, A. Mitchell & Shavell, Steven, 1998. "On offense history and the theory of deterrence," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 18(3), pages 305-324, September.
  16. Laplante, Benoit & Rilstone, Paul, 1996. "Environmental Inspections and Emissions of the Pulp and Paper Industry in Quebec," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 31(1), pages 19-36, July.
  17. A. Mitchell Polinsky & Steven Shavell, 1999. "The Economic Theory of Public Enforcement of Law," NBER Working Papers 6993, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
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Cited by:
  1. Ujjayant Chakravorty & Céline Nauges & Henry Thille, 2012. "Gasoline Content Regulation and Compliance among US Refineries," CESifo Working Paper Series 3978, CESifo Group Munich.

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