Environmental Enforcement in Dire Straits - 'There is No Protection for Nothing and No Data for Free'
44 Pages Posted: 25 Jun 2009
Those charged with drafting and enforcing our environmental laws have had to work with little or no information about whether or not the programs are actually working properly. There are a host of reasons for this, many of them having to do with availability of data that can be examined empirically. Using newly available data on state actions in environmental enforcement, and a new dataset of state environmental expenditures which they created, the authors of this article are able to examine for the first time the relationship between state environmental expenditures and effectiveness of state environmental enforcement for all permitted sources. They conclude that state expenditures on environmental programs are strongly associated with effective environmental compliance, which has important implications for environmental law and policy. The authors also examine the debate over the effectiveness of cooperative vs. deterrence based enforcement, relate that to findings on state expenditures, and make suggestions for improving the availability of data and environmental enforcement generally.
Keywords: environment, enforcement, environmental enforcement, deterent based enforcement, cooperative based enforcement, environmental administration, environmental agency funding, agency funding, EPA, state environmental agencies
JEL Classification: C1, C82, D23, D7, H32, H51, H72, K32, Q38
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