Is There an Environmental Version of the Kantian Peace? Insights from Water Pollution in Europe

European Journal of International Relations, Vol. 16, No. 1, pp. 77-102, 2010

32 Pages Posted: 29 Dec 2008 Last revised: 4 Jul 2014

Date Written: December 27, 2008

Abstract

This paper is now published as:

Bernauer, Thomas, Kuhn, Patrick. 2010. Is There an Environmental Version of the Kantian Peace? Insights From Water Pollution in Europe. European Journal of International Relations 16/1, 2010:77-102.

Please read and cite the published version.

We examine whether there is an environmental version of the Kantian peace; that is, whether democracies that trade and are bound by international treaties are less likely to harm each other environmentally. Specifically, we study five factors that are likely to help in reducing beggar-thy-neighbour behaviour in terms of transboundary pollution: democracy, supranational institutions, trade relations, stringency of domestic environmental policy, and international environmental commitment. The empirical focus is on upstream-downstream water pollution in Europe in 1970-2003. The observed effects of the five variables differ considerably across forms of pollution and definitions of beggar-thy-neighbour behaviour. Some of our explanatory variables contribute to reducing beggar-thy-neighbour behaviour. Hence there is some empirical support for the environmental Kantian argument. Nonetheless, state behaviour in this area remains characterized by free-riding incentives; the forces of democracy, trade, and national and international regulation and institutions do not easily produce decent international behaviour.

Keywords: International cooperation, democracy, trade, globalization, Europe, environment, water, pollution

Suggested Citation

Bernauer, Thomas and Kuhn, Patrick, Is There an Environmental Version of the Kantian Peace? Insights from Water Pollution in Europe (December 27, 2008). European Journal of International Relations, Vol. 16, No. 1, pp. 77-102, 2010. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1321032

Thomas Bernauer (Contact Author)

ETH Zurich ( email )

Center for Comparative and International Studies
Building IFW, office 45.1, Haldeneggsteig 4
Zurich 8092, 8092
Switzerland
+41 44 632 6466 (Phone)
+41 44 632 1289 (Fax)

HOME PAGE: http://www.ib.ethz.ch

Patrick Kuhn

ETH Zürich ( email )

Zürichbergstrasse 18
8092 Zurich, CH-1015
Switzerland

Register to save articles to
your library

Register

Paper statistics

Downloads
57
Abstract Views
999
rank
363,460
PlumX Metrics