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A Cournot Mechanism for Pollution Control under Asymmetric Information

  • Ross McKitrick

    ()

The contribution of this paper is to show that a simple nonlinear tax can achieve a long-run socially optimal level of pollution without the regulator knowing marginal abatement costs. Firms are charged their differential contribution to total damages, evaluated at the upper margin of current emissions. This induces a Cournot game in pollution levels. We show that the Nash equilibrium exists, corresponds to the socially optimal long-run output and emission levels and number of firms, is stable, and can be reached by iterative computations where conjectures are formed using a linear estimator based on past emission levels. Copyright Kluwer Academic Publishers 1999

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File URL: http://hdl.handle.net/10.1023/A:1008397420322
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Article provided by European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists in its journal Environmental and Resource Economics.

Volume (Year): 14 (1999)
Issue (Month): 3 (October)
Pages: 353-363

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Handle: RePEc:kap:enreec:v:14:y:1999:i:3:p:353-363
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.springerlink.com/link.asp?id=100263

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  1. Joanne Roberts, 1999. "Implementing the Efficient Allocation of Pollution," Working Papers jorob-99-01, University of Toronto, Department of Economics.
  2. Fullerton, Don, 1997. "Environmental Levies and Distortionary Taxes: Comment," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 87(1), pages 245-51, March.
  3. Spulber, Daniel F., 1988. "Optimal environmental regulation under asymmetric information," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 35(2), pages 163-181, March.
  4. Biglaiser, Gary & Horowitz, John K & Quiggin, John, 1995. "Dynamic Pollution Regulation," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 8(1), pages 33-44, July.
  5. Livernois, J. & Karp, L., 1992. "Using Automatic Tax Changes to Control Pollution Emissions," Working Papers 1992-12, University of Guelph, Department of Economics and Finance.
  6. Dasgupta, Partha & Hammond, Peter & Maskin, Eric, 1980. "On Imperfect Information and Optimal Pollution Control," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 47(5), pages 857-60, October.
  7. Roberts, Marc J. & Spence, Michael, 1976. "Effluent charges and licenses under uncertainty," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 5(3-4), pages 193-208.
  8. Shaffer, Sherrill, 1995. "Optimal Linear Taxation of Polluting Oligopolists," Journal of Regulatory Economics, Springer, vol. 7(1), pages 85-100, January.
  9. Thorlund-Petersen, Lars, 1990. "Iterative computation of cournot equilibrium," Games and Economic Behavior, Elsevier, vol. 2(1), pages 61-75, March.
  10. Spulber, Daniel F., 1985. "Effluent regulation and long-run optimality," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 12(2), pages 103-116, June.
  11. Kwerel, Evan, 1977. "To Tell the Truth: Imperfect Information and Optimal Pollution Control," Review of Economic Studies, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 44(3), pages 595-601, October.
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