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Appears in Collections:Economics Working Papers
Peer Review Status: Unrefereed
Title: Do productivity improvements move us along the environmental Kuznets Curve?
Author(s): Turner, Karen
Hanley, Nicholas
De Fence, Janine
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Citation: Turner K, Hanley N & De Fence J (2009) Do productivity improvements move us along the environmental Kuznets Curve?. Stirling Economics Discussion Paper, 2009-02.
Keywords: Computable general equilibrium models
Technical progress
Energy efficiency
Labour productivity
Environmental kuznets curve
Energy conservation Great Britain
Technological innovations Great Britain
Economic development Great Britain
JEL Code(s): D57: General Equilibrium and Disequilibrium: Input-Output Tables and Analysis
D58: Computable and Other Applied General Equilibrium Models
R15: General Regional Economics: Econometric and Input-Output Models; Other Models
Q41: Energy: Demand and Supply; Prices
Q43: Energy and the Macroeconomy
Issue Date: 1-Jan-2009
Date Deposited: 28-Jan-2009
Publisher: University of Stirling Management School
Series/Report no.: Stirling Economics Discussion Paper, 2009-02
Abstract: The Environmental Kuznets Curve (EKC) hypothesis focuses on the argument that rising prosperity will eventually be accompanied by falling pollution levels as a result of one or more of three factors: (1) structural change in the economy; (2) demand for environmental quality increasing at a more-than-proportional rate; (3) technological progress. Here, we focus on the third of these. In particular, energy efficiency is commonly regarded as a key element of climate policy in terms of achieving reductions in economy-wide CO2 emissions over time. However, a growing literature suggests that improvements in energy efficiency will lead to rebound (or backfire) effects that partially (or wholly) offset energy savings from efficiency improvements. In this paper we consider whether increasing labour productivity will have a more beneficial, or more predictable, impact on CO2/GDP ratios than improvements in energy efficiency. We do this by using CGE models of the Scottish regional and UK national economies to analyse the impacts of a simple 5% exogenous (and costless) increase in energy or labour augmenting technological progress.
Type: Working Paper
Affiliation: Economics
University of Strathclyde

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