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The Polluter-Pays Principle in Climate Change Law: an Economic Appraisal

The Polluter-Pays Principle in Climate Change Law: an Economic Appraisal There is a lively debate among scholars and policymakers on whether either consumers or producers should be seen as responsible for pollution caused in the production and consumption of traded goods. In this article, we argue that, in conformity with intuitive conceptions of causation, the economic incidence of a Pigouvian tax can be seen as a measure of the relative contribution to pollution of consumers and producers. Taking this perspective on the polluter-pays principle can help increase ambition in climate change action because it reduces the relevance of the question “Who is the polluter?” in climate change negotiations and enables a focus instead on the issue of “What can be done?” to reduce carbon emissions. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Climate Law Brill

The Polluter-Pays Principle in Climate Change Law: an Economic Appraisal

Climate Law , Volume 10 (1): 22 – Mar 19, 2020

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
Copyright © Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
1878-6553
eISSN
1878-6561
DOI
10.1163/18786561-01001004
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

There is a lively debate among scholars and policymakers on whether either consumers or producers should be seen as responsible for pollution caused in the production and consumption of traded goods. In this article, we argue that, in conformity with intuitive conceptions of causation, the economic incidence of a Pigouvian tax can be seen as a measure of the relative contribution to pollution of consumers and producers. Taking this perspective on the polluter-pays principle can help increase ambition in climate change action because it reduces the relevance of the question “Who is the polluter?” in climate change negotiations and enables a focus instead on the issue of “What can be done?” to reduce carbon emissions.

Journal

Climate LawBrill

Published: Mar 19, 2020

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