The Private Provision of International Impure Public Goods: The Case of Climate Policy
Basque Centre for Climate Change Working Paper No. 2011-09
33 Pages Posted: 16 Sep 2011
Date Written: September 16, 2011
We discuss a tax-transfer scheme that aims at addressing the underprovision problem associated with the private supply of international public goods and at bringing about Pareto optimal allocations internationally. In particular, we consider the example of the global public good ‘climate stabilization’, both in an analytical and a numerical simulation model. The proposed scheme levies Pigouvian taxes globally, while international sidepayments are employed in order to provide incentives to individual countries for not taking a free-ride from the international Pigouvian tax scheme. The side-payments, in turn, are financed via the environmental taxes. As a distinctive feature we take into account ancillary benefits that may be associated with local public characteristics of climate policy. We determine the positive impact that ancillary effects may exert on the scope for financing side-payments via environmental taxation. A particular attractive feature of ancillary benefits is that they arise shortly after the implementation of climate policies and therefore yield an almost immediate payback of investments in abatement efforts. Especially in times of high public debt levels, long periods of amortization would tend to reduce political support for investments in climate policy.
Keywords: ancillary benefits, climate policy, impure public goods, environmental taxation, international transfers
JEL Classification: Q38, H23, D62
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation