Regulatory Spillover: How Regulatory Programs Influence Voluntary Efforts to Adopt Best Management Practices to Manage Non-Point Source Pollution

Environs: Environmental Law and Policy Journal, Vol. 35, No. 1, p. 37, Fall 2011

63 Pages Posted: 14 Feb 2012

See all articles by Anne G. Short

Anne G. Short

Boston University

Tim Duane

University of California, Santa Cruz

Date Written: 2011

Abstract

A central question in environmental, land use, and natural resources law and policy is the relative efficacy of regulatory versus voluntary approaches to the achievement of performance outcomes. This Article addresses this debate by examining the governance of non-point source (“NPS”) pollution on private lands. It specifically focuses on the prevention and control of sediment — a common NPS pollutant — from private lands in the rural North Coastal Basin of California and examines how regulations, non-regulatory programs, and other factors promote and impede the adoption of pollution control measures on private lands. It draws attention to the ways that formal and informal social interactions influence landowners’ management decisions, highlights the linkages between regulatory and non-regulatory actions, and adds insight into the design of regulatory and non-regulatory programs that recognize and capitalize on the social factors that affect management decisions on private lands. In particular, this study demonstrates that there is “regulatory spillover” from regulatory programs to non regulatory programs and voluntary actions. By requiring some landowners to retain independent technical professionals, the regulation of timber harvests has generated increased knowledge about BMPs among landowners. This then translates into increased utilization of nonregulatory resources and the adoption of BMPs on private lands that are not subject to strict regulatory monitoring or enforcement. Both regulations and non-regulatory programs influence landowners’ knowledge and actions, but they do so in different ways. Most importantly, regulations and non-regulatory programs often work in tandem and their combined influence extends beyond the reach of either one operating independently. It is shown here that interactions between landowners and professionals and amongst multiple landowners can also lead to increased knowledge about and adoption of BMPs. This study illustrates that informal social networks and high quality interactions between landowners and professionals, such as private consultants, regulators, and staff at non-profit organizations, can extend the reach and impact of both regulatory and non-regulatory programs.

Suggested Citation

Short, Anne G. and Duane, Timothy P., Regulatory Spillover: How Regulatory Programs Influence Voluntary Efforts to Adopt Best Management Practices to Manage Non-Point Source Pollution (2011). Environs: Environmental Law and Policy Journal, Vol. 35, No. 1, p. 37, Fall 2011, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2004611

Anne G. Short

Boston University ( email )

595 Commonwealth Avenue
Boston, MA 02215
United States

Timothy P. Duane (Contact Author)

University of California, Santa Cruz ( email )

Environmental Studies
Santa Cruz, CA 95064
United States

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Downloads
80
Abstract Views
846
Rank
574,993
PlumX Metrics