Do Constitutions Matter? The Effects of Constitutional Environmental Rights Provisions on Environmental Outcomes
AbstractWe use a novel data set within an instrumental variables framework to test whether the presence and legal strength of constitutional environmental rights are related to environmental outcomes. The outcome variables include Yale’s Environmental Performance Index and some of its components. The analysis accounts for the possibility that a country which takes steps to protect the environment might also be more likely to constitutionalize environmental rights. Controls include: (1) gross domestic product per capita (2) whether the country is a party to the International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights; (3) rule of law; (4) population density; and (5) exogenous geographic effects. The inclusion of income means that our study is directly related to the Environmental Kuznets Curve literature. We find that constitutions do indeed matter for positive environmental outcomes, which suggests that we should not only pay attention to the incentives confronting polluters and resource users, but also to the incentives and constraints confronting those policymakers who initiate, monitor, and enforce environmental policies.
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Bibliographic InfoPaper provided by University of Connecticut, Department of Economics in its series Working papers with number 2014-16.
Length: 12 pages
Date of creation: Jul 2014
Date of revision:
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More information through EDIRC
Constitutional Law; Environment; Environmental Kuznets Curve; Environmental Rights;
Find related papers by JEL classification:
- K10 - Law and Economics - - Basic Areas of Law - - - General (Constitutional Law)
- K32 - Law and Economics - - Other Substantive Areas of Law - - - Environmental, Health, and Safety Law
- O13 - Economic Development, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Development - - - Agriculture; Natural Resources; Environment; Other Primary Products
- Q50 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - General
- Q56 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environment and Development; Environment and Trade; Sustainability; Environmental Accounts and Accounting; Environmental Equity; Population Growth
This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:
- NEP-ALL-2014-08-09 (All new papers)
- NEP-LAW-2014-08-09 (Law & Economics)
- NEP-RES-2014-08-09 (Resource Economics)
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