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Environmental Protection Agencies: Measuring the Welfare Benefits from Regulation under Different Information Contexts

Author

Listed:
  • Ana Espinola-Arredondo
  • Felix Munoz-Garcia

    () (School of Economic Sciences, Washington State University)

Abstract

This paper evaluates the welfare benefits of introducing environmental regulation in a market that is subject to the threat of entry. We consider complete and incomplete information settings, where potential entrants use the regulator’s tax policy and the incumbent’s output decisions in order to infer the incumbent’s cost structure. When the regulator is absent, we show that firms? entry-deterring practices increase pollution relative to complete information. Hence, under certain conditions, environmental regulation becomes more beneficial in incomplete than in complete information contexts. Our results, therefore, identify under which cases an under-or over-estimation of the welfare benefits of environmental regulation arises from ignoring the information setting in which firms interact. We also examine how this estimation error increases as firms become more symmetric in their production costs.

Suggested Citation

  • Ana Espinola-Arredondo & Felix Munoz-Garcia, 2011. "Environmental Protection Agencies: Measuring the Welfare Benefits from Regulation under Different Information Contexts," Working Papers 2011-11, School of Economic Sciences, Washington State University.
  • Handle: RePEc:wsu:wpaper:espinola-11
    as

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    File URL: http://faculty.ses.wsu.edu/WorkingPapers/AnaEspinola/WP2011-12.pdf
    File Function: First version, 2011
    Download Restriction: no

    References listed on IDEAS

    as
    1. Francesca Barigozzi & Bertrand Villeneuve, 2006. "The Signaling Effect of Tax Policy," Journal of Public Economic Theory, Association for Public Economic Theory, vol. 8(4), pages 611-630, October.
    2. Farrell, Joseph, 1987. "Information and the Coase Theorem," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 1(2), pages 113-129, Fall.
    3. David B. Ridley, 2008. "Herding versus Hotelling: Market Entry with Costly Information," Journal of Economics & Management Strategy, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 17(3), pages 607-631, September.
    4. Segerson, Kathleen, 1988. "Uncertainty and incentives for nonpoint pollution control," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 15(1), pages 87-98, March.
    5. Stavins, Robert N., 1996. "Correlated Uncertainty and Policy Instrument Choice," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 30(2), pages 218-232, March.
    6. Ana Espinola-Arredondo & Felix Munoz-Garcia & Jude Bayham, 2011. "Promoting Lies through Regulation: Deterrence Impacts of Flexible versus Inflexible Policy," Working Papers 2011-3, School of Economic Sciences, Washington State University.
    7. Xepapadeas, A. P., 1991. "Environmental policy under imperfect information: Incentives and moral hazard," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 20(2), pages 113-126, March.
    Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Entry deterrence; Signaling; Emission fees; Welfare Benefits;

    JEL classification:

    • D82 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Asymmetric and Private Information; Mechanism Design
    • H23 - Public Economics - - Taxation, Subsidies, and Revenue - - - Externalities; Redistributive Effects; Environmental Taxes and Subsidies
    • L12 - Industrial Organization - - Market Structure, Firm Strategy, and Market Performance - - - Monopoly; Monopolization Strategies
    • Q5 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics

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