The Economics of Environmental Monitoring and Enforcement
Posted: 8 Oct 2014
Date Written: November 2014
Without monitoring and enforcement, environmental laws are largely nonbinding guidance. Although economists and philosophers have thought seriously about the broader public enforcement of law since at least the eighteenth century, environmental monitoring and enforcement remain both understudied and controversial. This article reviews what we do and do not know about the subject. I review common environmental enforcement institutions, prescriptive and descriptive theories, empirical evidence on regulator behavior, and empirical evidence on deterrence effects.
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