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Local causes, regional co-operation and global financing for environmental problems: the case of Southeast Asian Haze pollution


  • Luca Tacconi


  • Frank Jotzo


  • R. Grafton



Lack of action on cross-border environmental problems in developing countries is often ascribed to gaps in local capacity and resources, failure of regional cooperation, and lack of financial support from rich countries. Using the case of the Southeast Asian Haze pollution from forest and peat fires in Indonesia, we explore the challenges posed by environmental problems whose causes are closely linked to local development and livelihood strategies, and whose impacts are local, regional (haze) as well as global (carbon emissions). We assess whether there are real opportunities to implement effectively the recent Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Agreement on Transboundary Haze Pollution. To address the deep determinants behind haze pollution, we propose signatories to the Agreement refocus their efforts to controlling peat fires rather than strive for a zero-burning regime. We also recommend a new approach to financing sustainable development based on rules and incentives, with a regional pool of funds, contributed by rich countries through the Global Environment Facility and countries in Southeast Asia.
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Suggested Citation

  • Luca Tacconi & Frank Jotzo & R. Grafton, 2008. "Local causes, regional co-operation and global financing for environmental problems: the case of Southeast Asian Haze pollution," International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 8(1), pages 1-16, March.
  • Handle: RePEc:spr:ieaple:v:8:y:2008:i:1:p:1-16
    DOI: 10.1007/s10784-007-9057-z

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. Quentin Grafton, R. & Jotzo, Frank & Wasson, Merrilyn, 2004. "Financing sustainable development: Country Undertakings and Rights for Environmental Sustainability CURES," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(1-2), pages 65-78, November.
    2. Quah, Euston, 2002. "Transboundary Pollution in Southeast Asia: The Indonesian Fires," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 30(3), pages 429-441, March.
    3. Tacconi, Luca & Vayda, Andrew P., 2006. "Slash and burn and fires in Indonesia: A comment," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 56(1), pages 1-4, January.
    4. L. Tacconi & P. Moore & D. Kaimowitz, 2007. "Fires in tropical forests – what is really the problem? lessons from Indonesia," Mitigation and Adaptation Strategies for Global Change, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 55-66, January.
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    Cited by:

    1. Purnomo, Herry & Shantiko, Bayuni & Sitorus, Soaduon & Gunawan, Harris & Achdiawan, Ramadhani & Kartodihardjo, Hariadi & Dewayani, Ade Ayu, 2017. "Fire economy and actor network of forest and land fires in Indonesia," Forest Policy and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 78(C), pages 21-31.
    2. Dimitrios Konstadakopulos, 2009. "Cooling the earth? The changing priorities of EU–Asia technology cooperation," Asia Europe Journal, Springer, vol. 7(2), pages 345-366, June.
    3. Stephen Howes & Paul Wyrwoll, . "New Challenges to the Export Oriented Growth Model," Chapters, Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA).
    4. Venkatachalam ANBUMOZHI & Ponciano S. INTAL, Jr., 2015. "Can Thinking Green and Sustainability Be an Economic Opportunity for ASEAN?," Working Papers DP-2015-66, Economic Research Institute for ASEAN and East Asia (ERIA).
    5. Berna Edoardo Berionni, 2013. "Regionalizzare la tutela dell’ambiente? Verso una sostenibilità su scala regionale: il caso dell’UE e dell’ASEAN," RIVISTA DI STUDI SULLA SOSTENIBILITA', FrancoAngeli Editore, vol. 2013(2), pages 107-128.
    6. Howes, Stephen & Wyrwoll, Paul, 2012. "Asia’s Wicked Environmental Problems," ADBI Working Papers 348, Asian Development Bank Institute.
    7. Helena Varkkey, 2014. "Regional cooperation, patronage and the ASEAN Agreement on transboundary haze pollution," International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 14(1), pages 65-81, March.

    More about this item


    ASEAN; Climate change; Fires; GEF; Haze pollution; Regional agreements;

    JEL classification:

    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming
    • O20 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Development Planning and Policy - - - General
    • C60 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - General


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