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White certificates and competition

Certificats blancs et concurrence

Claude Crampes () and Thomas-Olivier Léautier
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Thomas-Olivier Léautier: TSE - Toulouse School of Economics - UT1 - Université Toulouse 1 Capitole - Université Fédérale Toulouse Midi-Pyrénées - EHESS - École des hautes études en sciences sociales - CNRS - Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique - INRAE - Institut National de Recherche pour l’Agriculture, l’Alimentation et l’Environnement

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Abstract: Tradable certificates are a good tool to promote economic activities when they increase the social surplus. White certificates are counterproductive, because although they encourage activities aimed at reducing energy consumption, these activities are ‘credence goods', i.e. goods whose real quality cannot be verified. They therefore lead to opportunistic behavior by professionals of building renovation and heating system installation. In order to make the system virtuous, certificates should guarantee the results actually measured, instead of ex ante technical evaluations. Given the cost of controls, the accuracy of the declarations should be ensured by heavy penalties for infringements, which is not feasible when companies are too small. Concentration in the building renovation sector should therefore be encouraged, respecting a trade-off between the collective benefit of having large companies responsible for energy performance and the risk of abuse of a dominant position or collusion by these same companies

Keywords: Regulations; Consumer welfare; Economic analysis; Economic efficiency; Concentration (unilateral effects); Dominant position (abuse); Relevant market; Price; Energy; Bien-être du consommateur; Analyse économique; Efficience économique; Concentration (effets unilatéraux); Position dominante (abus); Marché pertinent; Prix; Energie (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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Published in Competition Law Review, 2021, pp.66-74

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