Public Choice

, Volume 151, Issue 3–4, pp 565–584 | Cite as

Environmental cooperation: ratifying second-best agreements

  • Pierre CourtoisEmail author
  • Guillaume Haeringer


As an alternative to the environmental cartel approach, we assume that an international environmental agreement aims simply at providing a collective response to a perceived threat. Given this less demanding concept of cooperation and considering that most treaties become enforceable only after ratification by a sufficient number of participants, we examine the set of self-enforceable agreements. This set contains first-best but also second-best agreements that do not maximize the collective welfare of members but meet environmental and/or participative requirements. We study the properties of this set and discuss admissible values of targets and thresholds that favour economics over environmental objectives and vice versa.


International environmental agreement Social welfare Abatement bound Self-enforcement Ratification threshold 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Dept. of EconomicsINRAMontpellierFrance
  2. 2.Dept. of EconomicsUniversitat Autonoma de BarcelonaBellaterraSpain

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