Are international environmental agreements effective? The case of trade in hazardous chemicals and persistent organic pollutants

Mardi | 2016-09-13
16h00-17h00 en sully 05


Recent research has questioned the effectiveness of International Environmental Agreements; some are seen as an attempt by countries to project an image on the international stage, rather than legitimate environmental concerns. This paper focuses on the Rotterdam Convention (RC) on hazardous chemicals (HCs) and the Stockholm Convention (SC) on persistent organic pollutants (POPs). It explicitly evaluates the effects of ratification and adoption of these agreements on imports of those products controlling for the endogeneity of the decision to ratify. Our results are twofold. Firstly, ratification of the SC is associated with lower imports of POPs sent from developed to developing countries if the importer ratifies. Secondly, in the case of the RC, a significant decrease on imports of HCs is observed if both trading partners ratify and also when imports of POPs are from developed to developing countries. Both results point toward the partial effectiveness of the conventions.