Democracy and Climate Change Policies: Is History Important?
Ecological Economics, 95, 2013, pp. 11-19
33 Pages Posted: 30 Jan 2013 Last revised: 4 Dec 2013
Date Written: April 16, 2013
This paper argues that it is countries’ historical experience with democracy, the democratic capital stock, rather than current levels of democracy that determines current climate change policies. Empirical evidence using data starting as far back as year 1800 for 87 countries, which together are responsible for 93.7 per cent of global carbon emissions, suggests that the democratic capital stock has an important and robust effect on climate change policies. A history of executive constraints is particularly important. The current level of democracy does not play a role once democratic capital has been accounted for.
Keywords: Democracy, Democratic Capital, Political Economy, International Public Goods: Climate Change, Environmental Policy, Executive Constraints
JEL Classification: H23, H87, Q54, Q58
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation