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Multilateral Trade Agreements and Market-Based Environmental Policies

  • Fischer, Carolyn

    ()

    (Resources for the Future)

  • Hoffmann, Sandra

    ()

    (Resources for the Future)

  • Yoshino , Yutaka

We review the legal provisions of the WTO regime that have important implications for national, market-based environmental policies. We evaluate those provisions for their effects on a member country’s ability and incentives to design economically efficient environmental policies. International trade institutions do not recognize the polluter pays principle, posing some challenges for unilateral policies addressing cross-border pollutants and leakage. Nor do they recognize the economic equivalence of emission tax and permit regimes, leading to different potential constraints on policy design and leaving some environmental policies open to influence by protectionist motives. As many legality issues have yet to be disputed and resolved, opportunities exist to help the WTO and environmental institutions evolve in ways to enable and encourage good policymaking.

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File URL: http://www.rff.org/RFF/documents/RFF-DP-02-28.pdf
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Paper provided by Resources For the Future in its series Discussion Papers with number dp-02-28.

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Date of creation: 13 May 2002
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Handle: RePEc:rff:dpaper:dp-02-28
Contact details of provider: Web page: http://www.rff.org

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  1. Frankel, Jeffrey & Rose, Andrew K., 2003. "Is Trade Good or Bad for the Environment? Sorting Out the Causality," Working Paper Series rwp03-038, Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government.
  2. Fischer, Carolyn & Kerr, Suzi & Toman, Michael, 1998. "Using Emissions Trading to Regulate U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions: An Overview of Policy Design and Implementation Issues," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 51(n. 3), pages 453-64, September.
  3. Josh Ederington & Jenny Minier, 2003. "Is environmental policy a secondary trade barrier? An empirical analysis," Canadian Journal of Economics, Canadian Economics Association, vol. 36(1), pages 137-154, February.
  4. Fischer, Carolyn, 2001. "Rebating Environmental Policy Revenues: Output-Based Allocations and Tradable Performance Standards," Discussion Papers dp-01-22, Resources For the Future.
  5. Josh Ederington, 2001. "International Coordination of Trade and Domestic Policies," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 91(5), pages 1580-1593, December.
  6. Kyle Bagwell & Robert W. Staiger, 2001. "The WTO as a Mechanism for Securing Market Access Property Rights: Implications for Global Labor and Environmental Issues," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 15(3), pages 69-88, Summer.
  7. Fischer, Carolyn & Bernard, Alain & Vielle, Marc, 2001. "Is There a Rationale for Rebating Environmental Levies?," Discussion Papers dp-01-31-, Resources For the Future.
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