We explain the impact of the structure of multi-regional or multi-regional environmental agreements on their chances of success. Emissions trading has ambiguous and, in some cases, surprising consequences, both on the level of equilibrium of emissions reductions and on the ability to encourage countries or regions to participate in environmental agreements. An escape clause policy and a safety valve policy have much the same characteristics when adherence to environmental agreements is set in advance, but they have very different effects on incentives to join such an agreement. The two directives result in a qualitative difference in the leverage exercised by a potential member of the agreement over other members. Classification number JEL C72, H4, Q54 1.9 Historical background. International agreements on border waters and commercially valuable wildlife such as whales, seals and fish enter the late 19th, however, few such agreements were reached until the second half of the 20th century. In 1972, the United Nations Conference on the Human Environment in Stockholm marked the beginning of a broad international effort to protect, conserve and improve the environment. Since then, several important environmental agreements have been negotiated. International environmental agreements provide countries with a practical basis for addressing global environmental issues. This book examines the functioning and results of these agreements and analyzes the main reasons why some problems are successfully addressed and others ignored. 1.105 The agreement. The Convention on Wetlands of International Importance, particularly as a Waterbird Habitat (the Ramsar Convention), was adopted in Ramsar, Iran, in 1971.
The agreement entered into force internationally in 1975 and Canada became a contracting party in 1981. The member countries of the Convention have a total of 138 in May 2004 and represent all geographical regions of the world. 1.123 Of the five agreements we reviewed, environmental performance expectations (or targets) were clearly established in the case of the Montreal Protocol, the Ozone Annex and, in part, in the case of UNFA, based on the fish stocks examined. 30 This assumption is not necessarily true. If the IEA`s objective is to maximize the reduction in greenhouse gas emissions under the basis of a cap on overall reduction costs, trade would certainly be environmentally friendly. However, if the IEA`s objective is to maximize well-being, the optimal level of reduction depends on marginal and non-average mitigation costs. While trade certainly reduces total and average costs (if costs vary from country to country), it can either reduce or increase marginal costs. As a result, the effect of trade on the incentive to slow down is generally ambiguous (Karp 2008). If licensing trade increases the balance of pollution, trade in permits is « environmentally friendly. » This observation is important for the defence of the exchange of authorizations on the grounds that it reduces the total cost of reducing emissions, not that it promotes greater reduction.
1.63 The agreement.