Collusion Helps Abate Environmental Pollution: A Dynamic Approach
We investigate the bearings product market collusion on the abatement of polluting emissions in a Cournot oligopoly where production entails a negative environmental externality. We model the problem as a differential game and investigate the feedback solution of two alternative settings: a fully noncooperative oligopoly and a cartel maximising the discounted profits of all firms in the industry. Our analysis proves that the output reduction entailed by collusive behaviour may have a benefiacial effect on steady state welfare, as a result of the balance between a higher market price and a lower amount of polluting emissions. This result opens a new prespective on the debate about the management of environmental externalities, which so far has mainly focussed on the design of Pigouvian taxation schemes.
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