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Adaptation to climate change : commitment and timing issues.

Breton, M. and Sbragia, L. (2017) 'Adaptation to climate change : commitment and timing issues.', Environmental and resource economics., 68 (4). pp. 975-995.


We study the impact of timing and commitment on adaptation and mitigation policies in the context of international environmental problems. Adaptation policies present the characteristics of a private good and may require a prior investment, while mitigation policies produce a public good. In a stylized model, we evaluate the impact of strategic commitment and leadership considerations when countries with different attitudes towards environmental cooperation coexist. We obtain equilibrium abatement and adaptation levels and environmental costs under partial cooperation for various timing and leadership scenarios. Crucially, global environmental costs suffered by countries are found to be greater when adaptation measures can be used strategically.

Item Type:Article
Full text:(AM) Accepted Manuscript
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Publisher statement:The final publication is available at Springer via
Date accepted:22 July 2016
Date deposited:23 March 2017
Date of first online publication:03 August 2016
Date first made open access:03 August 2017

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