Study Notes

Market Failure - What are Global Public Bads

Level:
A-Level, IB
Board:
AQA, Edexcel, OCR, IB, Eduqas, WJEC

Last updated 7 Jan 2023

Global public bads are economic goods that have the following characteristics:

  • Non-rival: Global public bads can be consumed by multiple people simultaneously without reducing their availability.
  • Non-excludable: It is not possible to exclude non-payers from consuming the good.
  • Global: The consequences of consuming the good affect people all around the world.

Examples of global public bads include:

  • Climate change: The emission of greenhouse gases by one person or country affects the climate for people all around the world, and it is not possible to exclude anyone from experiencing the consequences of climate change.
  • Pollution: Pollution, such as air pollution and water pollution, can have negative effects on people all around the world and it is not possible to exclude anyone from being exposed to the pollution.
  • Pandemics: Pandemics, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, can spread globally and affect people all around the world, and it is not possible to exclude anyone from being infected or affected by the pandemic.
  • Invasive species: Invasive species, such as the Asian carp in the Great Lakes, can have negative impacts on native ecosystems and it is not possible to exclude anyone from being affected by the presence of the invasive species.

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