Voluntary Agreements About Cleaning Up Pollution Attempt To


A less crude instrument is the attribution of responsibility. If an environmental company is responsible for the damage caused by pollution, it would pollute until the marginal costs of the reduction exceed the limit damage it imposes on others, and it would pay for the damage resulting from that amount of wastewater. This solution requires clearly defined rights and cost-effective application of these rights. For most environmental goods, rights are not clearly defined and cannot be defined accurately because of the problem of non-competitive ills. Law enforcement, usually through the courts, is rarely free and even unsure, due to flaws in the legal system [Shavell (1984)). Another way to prevent pollution emissions is to subsidize pollution reduction. In the event of a reduction in subsidies, the government effectively grants businesses rights to pollute and forces taxpayers to compensate businesses for any possible reduction in pollution. This is part of the principle of compensation for victims, according to which beneficiaries of pollution must pay to reduce pollution. On the other hand, an emissions tax effectively gives potential polluters (taxpayers) the right to a polluting environment and forces companies to pay taxpayers (by paying emissions taxes) the right to infringe that right. This is consistent with the polluter pays principle, which requires pollutant producers to pay the privilege of pollution.48 Because of its carcinogenic potential and low exposure limits, acrylamide is considered a potential health hazard (JECFA, 2005). For this reason, in many countries, food authorities have asked food producers to take steps to limit the formation of acrylamide in their products (Amrein, Andres, Escher, Amado, 2007).

In 2002, the German concept of minimisation of acrylamide was introduced by the Federal Office for Consumer Protection and Food Safety (BVL). The concept was based on a voluntary agreement between the BVL, the Federal Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Consumer Protection (BMELV), federal authorities and industry stakeholders. The aim of the concept of minimisation is to gradually reduce the acrylamide content of foodstuffs by avoiding training. This requires the development of reduction methods that reduce the acrylamide content of foods without altering the properties of food (Gobel-Kliemant, 2007).

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