Don't Let a Serious Crisis Go to Waste: Exploring Linkages between Environmental Policy-Making and Environmental Incidents
Journal of Environmental Economics and Policy--Forthcoming
23 Pages Posted: 10 Apr 2014 Last revised: 21 Feb 2015
Date Written: April 4, 2014
This article seeks to explore the impact of environmental incidents on state-level environmental policy-making in the U.S. Environmental policy researchers have identified several factors and their impact on states’ ability and willingness to formulate green policies. Most studies have used binary values to the environmental policy variable. However this strategy can lead to biased estimates because the extent of policy-formulation is not the same across states. We propose an ordinal approach to measurement of environmental policy variable along with Multiple Correspondence Analyses (MCA). We also test for the impact of environmental incidents and its interaction with the strength of environmental organizations on the formulation of green policies. Econometric results from the longitudinal data indicate that the states that witness environmental incidents in the current period are less likely to formulate environmental policies in the same period. However, when environmental organizations root their advocacy programs on previous period’s environmental incident(s), it has a positive and significant impact on environmental policy-making. These results contribute not only to our understanding of critical factors of environmental policy-making, but also indicate that environmental organizations can leverage environmental incidents to influence state-level policy-making.
Keywords: state level environmental policy formulation, panel data, environmental incidents
JEL Classification: Q50, Q58, Q59
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation