nep-res New Economics Papers
on Resource Economics
Issue of 2007‒04‒28
three papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
Universidad de la Republica

  1. Is there an Environmental Urban Kuznets Curve? The case of polluting emissions due to daily mobility in 37 cities. (In French) By André MEUNIE (GREThA-GRES); Guillaume POUYANNE (GREThA-GRES)
  2. Does context matter more for hypothetical than for actual contributions? Evidence from a natural field experiment By Alpizar, Francisco; Carlsson, Fredrik; Johansson-Stenman, Olof
  3. Hypothetical bias in choice experiments: Within versus between subject tests By Johansson-Stenman, Olof; Svedsäter, Henrik

  1. By: André MEUNIE (GREThA-GRES); Guillaume POUYANNE (GREThA-GRES)
    Abstract: The Environmental Kuznets Curve (EKC) has given rise to a flourishing literature since the beginning of the 90’s. The EKC postulates an inverted U-shaped relationship between income and polluting emissions: there would be a level of wealth beyond which polluting emissions would decrease. Surprisingly, this issue has rarely been applied to the cities. Yet we consider such a question as a pertinent one. This article aims at analyzing the Urban EKC (UEKC) hypothesis. It tests it with a sample of 37 cities in the world. Previous studies on the UEKC hypothesis are very scarce. They are the ground for us, to define a specific methodological posture. First, we use polluting emissions per capita instead of pollutants concentrations: thus we control for the influence of urban size. Second, we only take in account pollutants due to a unique source, which is daily mobility. This makes the explanation of the income-polluting emissions relation easier, as our comments are based on a specific, well constituted literature about factors of daily mobility. We expose the theoretical mechanisms by which the UEKC due to daily mobility could be validated. The impact of income on polluting emissions is threefold : behavioural, with a direct effect and an indirect one ; technical (the environmental efficiency of the vehicles increases) ; political (planning authorities wish to evolve towards a « sustainable mobility »). The empirical part of the paper is a test of the UEKC on a sample of 37 cities in the world. We present three important results. First, the estimation of quadratic regressions gives an inverted U-shaped relationship for most of the pollutants, which doesn’t permit to invalidate the UEKC hypothesis. Second, we show that the explanation of such curves is linked to two sets of factors: individual behaviours (e.g. modal choice) and collective choices (e.g. transit supply). Third, we discuss the validity of the UEKC hypothesis, that is we seek to explain the level of polluting emissions. As many factors are entangled, we use a principal components analysis to show that the influence of income may in fact reflect the influence of both urban form and consumers’ habits on polluting emissions due to daily mobility.
    Keywords: Environmental Kuznets Curve, daily mobility, urban, polluting emissions
    JEL: Q53 Q56 R12 R14 R41
    Date: 2007
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:grs:wpegrs:2007-10&r=res
  2. By: Alpizar, Francisco (Environment for Development Center, Tropical Agricultural and Higher Education Center (CATIE)); Carlsson, Fredrik (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University); Johansson-Stenman, Olof (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University)
    Abstract: We investigate the importance of the social context for people’s voluntary contributions to a national park in Costa Rica, using a natural field experiment. Some subjects make actual contributions while others state their hypothetical contribution. Both the degree of anonymity and provided information about the contributions of others influence subject contributions in the hypothesized direction. We do find a substantial hypothetical bias with regard to the amount contributed. However, the influence of the social contexts is about the same when the subjects make actual monetary contributions as when they state theirhypothetical contributions. Our results have important implications for validity testing of stated preference methods: a comparison between hypothetical and actual behavior should be done for a given social context. <p>
    Keywords: Environmental valuation; stated preference methods; voluntary contributions; anonymity; conformity; natural field experiment
    JEL: C93 Q50
    Date: 2007–04–19
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:hhs:gunwpe:0251&r=res
  3. By: Johansson-Stenman, Olof (Department of Economics, School of Business, Economics and Law, Göteborg University); Svedsäter, Henrik (Department of Psychology, Göteborg University)
    Abstract: A choice experiment eliciting environmental values is set up in order to test for hypothetical bias based on both within and between sample designs. A larger hypothetical bias was found in the latter case, which explains parts of the previous diverging results in the literature. People seem to prefer to do what they say they would do.<p>
    Keywords: Stated-preference methods; choice experiment; hypothetical bias; internal consistency; non-market valuation;
    JEL: C91 Q28
    Date: 2007–04–20
    URL: http://d.repec.org/n?u=RePEc:hhs:gunwpe:0252&r=res

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