Private Secondary Benefits of Greenhouse Gas Abatement and the Renegotiation of International Environmental Treaties
30 Pages Posted: 7 Nov 2005
Date Written: January 2005
Countries participating in international environmental negotiations widely ignore secondary benefits, i.e., benefits which are not derived from a policy's main aim. The reasons may lie in the complexity of an integration of secondary benefit considerations, information problems and missing knowledge on the importance of these benefits. However, underestimating benefits yields a suboptimal level of commitments in an international agreement on environmental protection levels. If in political reasoning the urgency of the consideration of secondary benefits gets a higher weight subsequently, the necessity of an international renegotiation arises. Otherwise, the environmental protection measures will persist on a suboptimal low level.
In this paper it is investigated whether a renegotiation could become unnecessary, if an environmental agreement does not assess distinct protection levels but distinct matching rates. The results demonstrate that the more flexible matching scheme could adjust the international environmental protection efforts to a Pareto-optimal level without a costly renegotiation. Thus, actual international negotiations should consider the implementation of flexible instruments which can react to new insights in the future without great efforts.
Keywords: Climate Change, Collective Action, Matching, Secondray Benefits
JEL Classification: Q28, D74, H41, H77
Suggested Citation: Suggested Citation