Academic Article/Working Paper
Most regulations seek to improve social welfare, but maximizing overall welfare may not help or protect all groups evenly. Many economists suggest handling unequal regulatory effects through the tax system. But some harms—like the disproportionately high environmental pollution felt by poor and minority communities and loss of the employment base in rural communities due to shifts in the economy—cannot be addressed by monetary compensation alone. A new article by Richard Revesz offers a blueprint for establishing a standing, broadly constituted interagency body charged with addressing serious negative consequences of regulatory measures on particular groups.
Our issue brief on Jobs and Environmental Regulation addresses rhetoric on “job-killing regulations,” describing the lack of consistent evidence that regulations lead to long-term changes in the unemployment rate. It also provides information on how to analyze claims about job impacts.
The Role of Job Impact Analyses in Environmental Policy Debates
The debate on jobs and environmental regulation too often relies on thinly-supported forecasts about jobs “killed” or “created” by public protections. In the din, questions about larger costs and benefits of protections for clean air or water can get lost.