Regulation and Deregulation: Property Rights Allocation Issues in De Regulation of Common Pool Resources
Rights-based institutions have been adopted for certain natural resources in order to more effectively mitigate the losses of the common pool. Past central government (command and control) regulation has not proved satisfactory. In deregulation, a major issue has been the assignment of those rights and controversy over it has slowed the process. In this paper, I examine three different allocation rules: first-possession, lottery or uniform allocation, and auction and draw predic tions as to when they might be adopted and why they are controversial. I analyze the assignment and nature of the rights granted for common-pool resources where deregulation has occurred: oil and gas unit shares, emission permits, and selected fishery ITQ’s in six countries (Australia, Canada, Chile, Iceland, New Zealand, and the U.S). I find that firstpossession rules dominate where there are incumbent users. Lotteries and auctions are rarely used. I discuss criticisms of first-possession rules and argue that first-possession is likely more efficient than previously recognized. Accordingly, restrictions on such allocations as part of deregulation (rights set-asides for particular groups and exchange limitations) may be costly in the long run for addressing the problems of the common pool.
|Date of creation:||Mar 2007|
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