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Climate clubs ... / Strategic cooperation ... Publications online now

Published online: July 03, 2019

Hagen, A. and K. Eisenack (2019). Climate clubs vs. single coalitions: the ambition of international environmental agreements, Climate Change Economics,


Abstract: We investigate whether global cooperation on emissions abatement can be improved if asymmetric countries agree to sign one out of several environmental agreements. The analysis is based on a two-stage game theoretical model. Conditions for stable coalitions and the resulting global emissions are determined. We allow for multiple coalitions with all countries being different, and analyze the effects in the cases of increasing marginal damages from emissions and of decreasing marginal benefits of emissions. We find that in the case of decreasing marginal benefits and constant marginal damages, admitting multiple coalitions increases the number of cooperating countries and reduces emissions (compared to the standard case with a single coalition). For increasing marginal damages and constant marginal benefits, however, multiple stable coalitions cannot coexist. If both damages and benefits are nonlinear, admitting multiple coalitions can decrease emissions. The paper thus contributes to the emerging discussion on the scope and limits of climate clubs.



Published online: Mai 31, 2019

Roggero, Matteo, Leonhard Kähler and Achim Hagen (2019). Strategic cooperation for transnational adaptation: lessons from the economics of climate change mitigation. International Environmental Agreements: Politics, Law and Economics 19 (4–5), pp 395–410.

Abstract: The literature on climate adaptation has so far conceptualized it as a domestic issue, to be governed somewhere between the local and the national scale. By contrast, scholars have shown little interest in exploring the case of cross-boundary adaptation spillovers, where adaptation by one country affects other countries. Two decades of the economic literature on climate mitigation may contribute to bridge this research gap because the problem structure of climate mitigation resembles that of adaptation with cross-boundary spillovers. With this in mind, we ask the following research question: Are there lessons to be learned by applying a mitigation perspective to the governance of adaptation with cross-boundary spillovers? After reviewing the relevant adaptation and mitigation literature, the paper applies mitigation insights to an adaptation case with cross-boundary spillovers: climate change-induced eutrophication in the Baltic Sea. Insights on coalition structures, side-payments, issue-linkage, and trade sanctions provide novel perspectives on the governance structures in place. To improve cooperation on providing adaptation as a public good, smaller regional governance arrangements could be more effective, European subsidies for pollution control might be redirected, and progress on eutrophication could be made a precondition for cooperation on other areas.

These perspectives depart both from the way the Baltic Sea eutrophication problem is addressed at present, and from the way public goods are addressed in the adaptation literature. They show that some lessons can indeed be learned, calling for further research.