Strategic environmental disclosure: Evidence from the DOE's voluntary greenhouse gas registry
Although mandatory disclosure programs have been studied extensively, strategic voluntary environmental disclosures by firms are not well understood. We study the motivations for and impacts of firms' strategic disclosure of greenhouse gas reductions to the US government. We first model firms' joint abatement and disclosure decisions, incorporating both economic and political incentives. We then use data from the Department of Energy's Voluntary Greenhouse Gas Registry to compare reported reductions to actual emissions. We find that participants in the program engage in highly selective reporting: in the aggregate, they increase emissions over time but report reductions. In contrast, non-participants decrease emissions over time. Participants tend to be large firms facing strong regulatory pressure; pressure from environmental groups reduces the likelihood of participation, suggesting such groups viewed the program as a form of greenwash. Participating in the 1605(b) program had no significant effect on a firm's changes in carbon intensity over time.
If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
As the access to this document is restricted, you may want to look for a different version under "Related research" (further below) or search for a different version of it.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:jeeman:v:61:y:2011:i:3:p:311-326. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Zhang, Lei)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.