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Enforcement of Environmental Protection Laws under Communism and Democracy

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  • Earnhart, Dietrich

Abstract

Lax enforcement of environmental protection laws in the formerly communist countries of Eastern and Central Europe is offered as one contributing factor to the large-scale environmental degradation that these countries have experienced. This article empirically examines enforcement responses to water-damaging "accidents" (for example, an oil spill) in the Czech Republic for the years 1988-92, a time period that spans both the communist political regime and the democratic political regime. In particular, it focuses on ex post penalties: required remediation (for example, cleanup after an oil spill) and monetary fines. Empirical analysis reveals the factors driving enforcement strategies in each political period and contrasts their influence under the two regimes. In particular, it identifies the operative liability rules guiding remediation and monetary fine decisions. Copyright 1997 by the University of Chicago.

Suggested Citation

  • Earnhart, Dietrich, 1997. "Enforcement of Environmental Protection Laws under Communism and Democracy," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 40(2), pages 377-402, October.
  • Handle: RePEc:ucp:jlawec:v:40:y:1997:i:2:p:377-402
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    File URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1086/467377
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    1. Cohen, Mark A, 1987. "Optimal Enforcement Strategy to Prevent Oil Spills: An Application of a Principal-Agent Model with Moral Hazard," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 30(1), pages 23-51, April.
    2. Gary S. Becker, 1974. "Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach," NBER Chapters,in: Essays in the Economics of Crime and Punishment, pages 1-54 National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Finsinger, J. & Hoehn, T. & Potoschnig, A., 1991. "The enforcement of product liability rules: A two-country analysis of court cases," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(2), pages 133-148, September.
    4. Nash, John, 1991. "To make the punishment fit the crime: The theory and statistical estimation of a multi-period optimal deterrence model," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 11(1), pages 101-110, May.
    5. Polinsky, A Mitchell & Shavell, Steven, 1992. "Enforcement Costs and the Optimal Magnitude and Probability of Fines," Journal of Law and Economics, University of Chicago Press, vol. 35(1), pages 133-148, April.
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    Citations

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    Cited by:

    1. Kjetil Telle, 2012. "Monitoring and enforcement of environmental regulations. Lessons from a natural field experiment in Norway," Discussion Papers 680, Statistics Norway, Research Department.
    2. Hubert Kempf & Stéphane Rossignol, 2007. "Is Inequality Harmful For The Environment In A Growing Economy?," Economics and Politics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 19(1), pages 53-71, March.
    3. repec:hal:journl:halshs-00117046 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. Earnhart, Dietrich & Lizal, Lubomir, 2002. "Effects of Ownership and Financial Status on Corporate Environmental Performance," CEPR Discussion Papers 3557, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    5. Earnhart, Dietrich & Lizal, Lubomir, 2006. "Effects of ownership and financial performance on corporate environmental performance," Journal of Comparative Economics, Elsevier, vol. 34(1), pages 111-129, March.
    6. Nyborg, Karine & Telle, Kjetil, 2004. "A dissolving paradox: Firms’ compliance to environmental regulation," Memorandum 02/2004, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
    7. Dietrich Earnhart, 2000. "Environmental “Citizen Suits” in the Czech Republic," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 10(1), pages 43-68, July.

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