Brouhle, Keith (2000) Information Sharing Devices in Environmental Policy: the EU ECO-lable and EMAS. [Working Paper]
[From the Introduction]. In this paper, I will focus on two voluntary agreements in the European Union, the EU eco-label and Eco-Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS). These voluntary agreements are interesting as they both attempt to facilitate the exchange of information between producers and consumers. The premise of the programs is that the parties, once informed, will use the information to make decisions that will improve the environment. Thus, there are two key steps. First, the voluntary agreements focus on the provision of information. Second, but equally important, the programs rely on the ability of the agents to use the information. Section two introduces the important role that information plays in a market economy. While both producers and consumers are integral in determining the market outcome, the two programs are geared toward different parties. The EU eco-label focuses on consumers as the impetus that will lead to change while the EMAS program places attention on producers. Sections three and four, then, discuss the information provisions of the EU eco-label and EMAS programs. Section five concludes with lessons to be learned from the two programs.
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