Environmental Regulation

Washington consensus on HFCs: US President Barack Obama and two Indian Prime Ministers agree on the road ahead

Washington consensus on HFCs: US President Barack Obama and two Indian Prime Ministers agree on the road ahead

October 6, 2014

By Jairam Ramesh - Live Mint

It is unlikely that those at the helm of affairs would read the American Economic Review, the most prestigious publication of the economics profession. This is a pity because in a very recent issue, Michael Greenstone of the University of Chicago and Rema Hanna of Harvard University have published the most detailed analysis ever of the impacts of key air and water pollution control regulations in India.

India's Particulate Problem

India's Particulate Problem

February 9, 2014

By Rohini Pande and Michael Greenstone - The New York Times
CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — Two years ago, China seemed oblivious to the extraordinary levels of air pollution in many of its cities and the health consequences. But over the past six months, there has been an explosion of information on pollution concentrations, warnings from the media and new policies from the government. It took a long time, but change is happening.

Outside auditors curb pollution, expose conflicts of interest in India

Outside auditors curb pollution, expose conflicts of interest in India

October 24, 2013

ClimateWire
By Henry Gass, E&E reporter
For 19 years, Prakash Vaghela has been auditing industry facilities in the state of Gujarat in northwest India to make sure they are meeting environmental standards. But he said it wasn't until around 2010 that most auditors in the state really began taking their jobs seriously.

Until that point, he said, environmental auditors in Gujarat didn't have much incentive to do their jobs well. They were selected and paid by the facility operators themselves, and their reports on pollution volumes were not verified for accuracy.

India cut pollution by not letting the polluters pay to be audited

India cut pollution by not letting the polluters pay to be audited

October 9, 2013

It seems a simple enough idea: If you want to deter companies from bad behavior, don’t let them pay the people who are supposed to be checking for bad behavior. Yet that is how it often works. Banks paid rating agencies to rate the creditworthiness of their mortgage-backed securities—we know how well that worked out—while industrial polluters pay the bills of the auditor who measures their greenhouse gas emissions and reports the results to government regulators.

Has environmental regulation been successful in India?

Has environmental regulation been successful in India?

July 16, 2012
Ideas for India
India has an impressive number of environmental regulations – but have they been a success? This column presents evidence that while initiatives such as catalytic converters for cars have reduced air pollution, there has been far less success in tackling water pollution. It argues that regulators will only be effective when they are given enough power and legitimacy.

Making environmental audits honest

Making environmental audits honest

August 5, 2011

The Indian Express
Speaking at the opening of an international seminar on "Global Environment and Disaster Management: Law and Society", Chief Justice of India S.H. Kapadia highlighted a major problem with the procedure for environmental impact assessments of proposed industrial projects. Currently, industries select and hire the consultants who prepare the report needed for clearance. This system creates an obvious conflict of interest: the consultant, who is paid by the project proponent, has every incentive to deliver a report that is favourable to the industry.