Environmental and Resource Economics

, Volume 45, Issue 4, pp 573–596 | Cite as

Renegotiations in the Greenhouse

  • Hans-Peter Weikard
  • Rob Dellink
  • Ekko van Ierland
Open Access


International climate policies are being shaped in a process of ongoing negotiations. This paper develops a sequential game framework to explore the stability of international climate agreements allowing for multiple renegotiations. We analyse how the incentives to reach an international climate agreement in the first period will be impacted by the prospect of further negotiations in later periods and by the punishment options related to renegotiations. For this purpose we introduce a dynamic model of coalition formation with twelve world regions that captures the key features of the climate-economy impacts of greenhouse gas emissions. For a model with one round of renegotiations we find that a coalition of China and the United States is the unique renegotiation proof equilibrium. In a game with more frequent renegotiations we find that the possibility to punish defecting players helps to stabilise larger coalitions in early stages of the game. Consequently, several renegotiation proof equilibria emerge that outperform the coalition of China and USA in terms of abatement levels and global payoff. The Grand Coalition, however, is unstable.


International climate agreements Self-enforcing international environmental agreements STACO model Coalition formation with renegotiation 

JEL Classification

C73 D74 Q54 



An earlier version of this paper was presented at the Third World Congress of Environmental and Resource Economists, July 3-6, 2006, Kyoto, Japan. We gratefully acknowledge the support of our collaborators in the STACO project.

Open Access

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Noncommercial License which permits any noncommercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author(s) and source are credited.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hans-Peter Weikard
    • 1
  • Rob Dellink
    • 1
    • 2
  • Ekko van Ierland
    • 1
  1. 1.Environmental Economics and Natural Resources GroupWageningen UniversityWageningenThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Institute for Environmental StudiesVU University AmsterdamAmsterdamThe Netherlands

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