nep-ene New Economics Papers
on Energy Economics
Issue of 2006‒03‒25
seven papers chosen by
Roger Fouquet
Imperial College, UK

  1. Technical Change Theory and Learning Curves: Patterns of Progress in Energy Technologies By Tooraj Jamasb
  2. Toward Sustainability: Technology Transition and Endogenous Population Growth By N.M. Hung; N.V. Quyen
  3. The Anarchy of Numbers: Understanding the Evidence on Venezuelan Economic Growth By Francisco Rodríguez
  4. Investment Decisions and Emissions Reductions:Results from Experiments in Emissions Trading By L. Gangadharan; A. Farrell; R. Croson
  5. Carbon Taxation, Prices and Welfare in New Zealand By John Creedy; Catherine Sleeman
  6. Managing the Risks of Climate Thresholds: Uncertainties and Information Needs By Klaus Keller; Gary Yohe; Michael Schlesinger
  7. Pollution Haven Hypothesis or Factor Endowment Hypothesis: Theory and Empirical Examination for the US and China By Umed Temurshoev

  1. By: Tooraj Jamasb
    Abstract: This paper presents a comparative analysis of energy technology learning and progress within the framework of Schumpeter’s invention-innovation-diffusion paradigm. We estimate learning by doing and research rates for a range of energy technologies in four stages of technical progress. Emerging and mature technologies respond slowly to research and development (R&D) and capacity expansion; evolving technologies exhibit high learning-by-doing and research rates; reviving technologies exhibit considerable response to learning-by-research although they do not face significant market constraints. We generally find higher learning-by-doing than learning-by-research rates but do not find any development stage where learning-by-doing alone is the dominant driver of technical change. Also, high capital intensity and market constraints appear to slow down the pace of progress of emerging and evolving technologies. We find little scope for potential substitution between learning-by-doing and learning-by-research across the technologies and different stages of their development path.
    Keywords: Energy technology, electricity, technical change, learning curves
    JEL: O3 Q4
    Date: 2006–03
  2. By: N.M. Hung; N.V. Quyen
    Abstract: In order to reach the state of economic sustainability, the problem of technology transition emphasizes the possibility of substituting for the exhaustible resource with an everlasting source of energy input. This paper aims at providing an analysis of this problem in an overlapping-generation model where the population is not a datum, but endogenous in the sense that it results from fertility decisions made by economic agents. First, we provide a new proof of the existence of competitive equilibrium under infinite time horizon. Here the difficulty lies in the fact that the market size is itself endogenous, because fertility - hence the population - is an individual decision at every point in time. Second, and perhaps most interestingly, the oil stock might not be entirely depleted, and the unused part in situ may serve the role of storing value for wealth transmission over time, just as money. But in contrast with paper money, which has no intrinsic value, leaving productive oil in situ as a bubble certainly adds another dimension to the inefficiency of overlapping-generation model. In this case, there are infinitely many equilibria as well as many steady states, depending on the data that characterize the initial state of the economy. Moreover, the convergence to some steady state, far from being simply monotone, might exhibit cyclical behavior, such as damped oscillation, limit cycles, etc.
    Keywords: Endogenous Population, Overlapping Generations, Oil Bubble, Dynamic Equilibria, Complex Dynamics
    JEL: J13 O11 O13 O40
    Date: 2006
  3. By: Francisco Rodríguez (Economics Department, Wesleyan University)
    Abstract: This paper studies Venezuelan economic performance from 1950 to 1998. We show that there exist wide divergences in many commonly used estimates of GDP growth and discuss the sources of those differences. We show that the choice of base year and linking techniques are crucial for the diagnosis of economic growth, and argue that the aggregate GDP and TFP growth numbers are distorted by cuts in oil production that came about as a result of the country adopting the OPEC strategy of exploiting market power during the 1970s. We argue that non-oil growth and TFP numbers represent more adequate measures of economic performance and that, while far from satisfactory, these do not deviate significantly from those of other Latin American countries.
    Keywords: Economic growth, National accounts, Growth accounting, Oil exporting economies, Latin America, Venezuela
    Date: 2006–02
  4. By: L. Gangadharan; A. Farrell; R. Croson
    Abstract: Emissions trading is an important regulatory tool in environmental policy making. Unfortunately the effectiveness of these regulations is difficult to measure in the field due to the unavailability of appropriate data. In contrast, experiments in the laboratory can provide guidance to regulators and legislatures about the performance of different market features in emission trading programs. This paper reports on the implementation of three different institutional designs, and presents experimental results investigating important features of emissions trading regimes: the ability to make investments in emissions abatement, ability to bank allowances and a declining emissions cap, both with and without uncertainty. These features are observed in virtually all existing air pollution emissions trading programs currently in place and will almost certainly be part of future applications. Like previous experimental studies of emissions trading, this paper shows that the efficiency gains expected from economic theory emerge observationally. We also show reduced efficiency when permits are bankable due to over-banking and when investments in emissions abatement are possible due to overinvesting. These tendencies do not worsen, however, when emissions caps decline.
    Keywords: Emissions Trading, Investment in Abatement, Banking, Laboratory Experiments
    JEL: Q20 C91
    Date: 2005
  5. By: John Creedy; Catherine Sleeman
    Abstract: This paper examines the effects on consumer prices arising from imposing a carbon tax in New Zealand, using information about inter-industry transactions and the use of fossil fuels by industries. The welfare effects of the carbon tax are examined for a range of different household types. Finally, overall measures of inequality are reported.
    Keywords: Carbon tax; equivalent variations; excess burdens; inequality
    JEL: H23 H31 Q58 D57
    Date: 2005
  6. By: Klaus Keller (Department of Geosciences, Penn State); Gary Yohe (Department of Economics, Wesleyan University); Michael Schlesinger (Department of Atmospheric Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
    Date: 2005–12
  7. By: Umed Temurshoev
    Abstract: This paper examines how free international trade affects the environment in the developed and less developed worlds. Using input-output techniques, tests of the pollution haven hypothesis (PHH) and the factor endowment hypothesis (FEH) for the US and China were empirically carried out. We found that China gains and the US lose in terms of CO2, SO2 and NOx emissions from increased trade, and the US is not exporting capital intensive goods. Thus both the PHH and the FEH are rejected, which implies that explaining the trade of pollutants remains an unresolved puzzle.
    Keywords: International trade, Environment, Pollution haven, Factor endowment, Inputoutput analysis.
    JEL: F18 Q32 D57
    Date: 2006–03

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