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Press and Leaks: Do Newspapers Reduce Toxic Emissions?

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  • Pamela Campa

    (University of Calgary)

Abstract

This paper investigates whether media presence affects corporate environmental decisions. Using data on plant-level toxic emissions in 1996-2009 from the US Environmental Protection Agency's Toxics Release Inventory and newly collected data on newspapers locations and content, I find that an increase in the number of newspapers near a plant raises the press coverage of the plant's toxic emissions and reduces the amount of these emissions. The effect of newspapers on toxic emissions is specific to industries that produce consumer goods, and is larger in counties that were subject to extreme levels of cancer incidence in the recent past.

Suggested Citation

  • Pamela Campa, "undated". "Press and Leaks: Do Newspapers Reduce Toxic Emissions?," Working Papers 2015-10, Department of Economics, University of Calgary, revised 01 Jul 2015.
  • Handle: RePEc:clg:wpaper:2015-10
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    3. Martin, Erik Nikolaus, 2021. "Can public service broadcasting survive Silicon Valley? Synthesizing leadership perspectives at the BBC, PBS, NPR, CPB and local U.S. stations," Technology in Society, Elsevier, vol. 64(C).
    4. Federico Boffa & Amedeo Piolatto & Giacomo A. M. Ponzetto, 2011. "Political centralization and government accountability," Economics Working Papers 1335, Department of Economics and Business, Universitat Pompeu Fabra, revised Jul 2015.
    5. Boffa, F. & Piolatto, A. & Ponzetto, G.A.M., 2012. "Centralization and Accountability : Theory and Evidence from the Clean Air Act," Discussion Paper 2012-033, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
    6. Federico Boffa & Amedeo Piolatto & Giacomo A. M. Ponzetto, 2016. "Political Centralization and Government Accountability," The Quarterly Journal of Economics, President and Fellows of Harvard College, vol. 131(1), pages 381-422.
    7. Magalhães de Oliveira, Gustavo & Sellare, Jorge & Cisneros, Elias, Börner, Jan & Börner, Jan, 2024. "Mind your language: Political signaling and deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon," Discussion Papers 333334, University of Bonn, Center for Development Research (ZEF).
    8. Pamela Campa & Lucija Muehlenbachs, 2024. "Addressing Environmental Justice through In-Kind Court Settlements," American Economic Journal: Economic Policy, American Economic Association, vol. 16(1), pages 415-446, February.
    9. Guo, Mengmeng & Liu, Jinge & Yu, Jianyu, 2021. "Social trust and food scandal exposure: Evidence from China," China Economic Review, Elsevier, vol. 69(C).
    10. Belay, Dagim G. & Jensen, Jørgen D., 2020. "‘The scarlet letters’: Information disclosure and self-regulation: Evidence from antibiotic use in Denmark," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 104(C).
    11. Axel Cronert, 2022. "When the paper tiger bites: Evidence of compliance with unenforced regulation among employers in Sweden," Regulation & Governance, John Wiley & Sons, vol. 16(4), pages 1141-1159, October.
    12. Araujo, Rafael & Costa, Francisco J M & Garg, Teevrat, 2022. "Public Attention and Environmental Action: Evidence from Fires in the Amazon," SocArXiv xj3f6, Center for Open Science.
    13. Calel, Raphael & Dechezlepretre, Antoine & Venmans, Frank, 2023. "Policing carbon markets," LSE Research Online Documents on Economics 120565, London School of Economics and Political Science, LSE Library.

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    JEL classification:

    • L88 - Industrial Organization - - Industry Studies: Services - - - Government Policy
    • Q53 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Air Pollution; Water Pollution; Noise; Hazardous Waste; Solid Waste; Recycling
    • Q58 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Environmental Economics: Government Policy

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