nep-res New Economics Papers
on Resource Economics
Issue of 2012‒09‒09
ten papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
Universidad de la Republica

  1. Sources of Comparative Advantage in Polluting Industries By Broner, Fernando A; Bustos, Paula; Carvalho, Vasco M
  2. Ecomarkets For Conservation And Sustainable Development in the Coastal Zone By R. Fujita; A.C. Markham; J. Lynham; F. Lynham; P. Feinberg; L. Bourillon; A. Lynham
  3. Climate change, agriculture and food security in Tanzania By Arndt, Channing; Farmer, William; Strzepek, Kenneth; Thurlow, James
  4. Use Less, Pay More: Can Climate Policy Address the Unfortunate Event for Being Poor? By Lucas Bretschger; Nujin Suphaphiphat
  5. Natural Gas Consumption and Economic Growth in Pakistan By Muhammad, Shahbaz; Lean, Hooi Hooi; Abdul, Farooq
  6. Climate Policy with Bentham-Rawls Preferences By Richard S.J. Tol
  7. The Political Economy of Deforestation in the Tropics By Robin Burgess; Matthew Hansen; Benjamin Olken; Peter Potapov; Stefanie Sieber;
  8. Peer Effects in Pro-Social Behaviour: Social Norms or Social Preferences? By Simon Gachter, Daniele Nosenzo and Martin Sefon; Daniele Nosenzo; Martin Sefton
  9. Introduction to contingent valuation using Stata By Lopez-Feldman, Alejandro
  10. Economic effects of a nuclear-phase out policy: A CGE analysis By Lucas Bretschger; Lin Zhang

  1. By: Broner, Fernando A; Bustos, Paula; Carvalho, Vasco M
    Abstract: We study the determinants of comparative advantage in polluting industries. We combine data on environmental policy at the country level with data on pollution intensity at the industry level to show that countries with laxer environmental regulation have a comparative advantage in polluting industries. Further, we address the potential problem of reverse causality. We propose an instrument for environmental regulation based on meteorological determinants of pollution dispersion identified by the atmospheric pollution literature. We find that the effect of environmental regulation on the pattern of trade is causal and comparable in magnitude to the effect of physical and human capital.
    Keywords: air pollution; comparative advantage; environmental regulation; international trade
    JEL: F11 F18 Q53 Q56
    Date: 2012–09
  2. By: R. Fujita (Environmental Defense Fund, San Francisco, CA 94105, USA); A.C. Markham (Environmental Defense Fund, San Francisco, CA 94105, USA); J. Lynham (Department of Economics, University of Hawaii at Manoa, USA); F. Lynham (Hopkins Coastal Station, Stanford University, Pacific Grove, CA 93950, USA); P. Feinberg (School of Earth Sciences, Stanford University, Stanford, CA 94305, USA); L. Bourillon (Comunidad y Biodiversidad, A.C. (COBI), Cancún, Quintana Roo 77500, México); A. Lynham (Comunidad y Biodiversidad, A.C. (COBI), Popocatepetl)
    Abstract: Because conventional markets value only certain goods or services in the oceans(e.g., fish), other services prodvideded by coastal an marine ecosystems that l tend to become degraded. In fact, the very capacity of an ecosystem to produce a valued good is often reduced because markets are valuing only the good, not the productive capacity. Coastal socio-ecosystems are perhaps particularly susceptible to these market failures due to the lack of clear property rights. Conservation strategies aimed at protecting coastal ecosystem services that are not valued by conventional markets by banning industrial or subsistence use in certain areas (Marine Protected Areas) often result in lost revenue and adverse social impacts, which in turn create conflict and opposition. Here, we describe markets and financial tools – “ecomarkets”– that could, under the right conditions, value wide portfolios of coastal ecosystem services and generate revenues while maintaining ecosystem structure and function by addressing the unique problems of the coastal zone, including a lack of clear rights of management and exclusion. Just as coastal tenure and catch share systems generate meaningful conservation and economic outcomes, it is possible to imagine other market mechanisms that do the same with respect to a variety of other coastal ecosystem goods and services. These approaches could allow communities to stop relying exclusively on extracting from natural systems, and instead to diversify uses and focus on longterm stewardship and conservation while meeting development, food security, and human welfare goals. Diversification of use and the preservation of intact coastal ecosystems are in turn likely to increase the resilience of socio-ecological systems to unanticipated stresses, for example, as a result of climate change or new human activities. The creation of ecomarkets will be difficult in many cases, because rights and responsibilities must be devolved, new social contracts will be required, accountability systems must be created and enforced, and longterm patterns of behavior must change. We argue that efforts to overcome these obstacles are justified, because these deep changes will strongly complement policies and tools such as Marine Protected Areas, coastal spatial management, and effective regulation, and thereby help bring coastal conservation to scale.
    Keywords: Ecomarkets, incentives, ecosystem services, property rights, coastal spatial planning and management, coastal conservation, marine conservation, ocean conservation
    Date: 2012–08
  3. By: Arndt, Channing; Farmer, William; Strzepek, Kenneth; Thurlow, James
    Abstract: The consequences of climate change for agriculture and food security in developing countries are of serious concern. Due to their reliance on rain-fed agriculture, both as a source of income and consumption, many low-income countries are considered to be the most vulnerable to climate change. This paper estimates the impact of climate change on food security in Tanzania. Representative climate projections are used in calibrated crop models to predict crop yield changes for 110 districts in the country. The results are in turn imposed on a highly-disaggregated, recursive dynamic economy-wide model of Tanzania. The authors find that, relative to a no-climate-change baseline and considering domestic agricultural production as the principal channel of impact, food security in Tanzania appears likely to deteriorate as a consequence of climate change. The analysis points to a high degree of diversity of outcomes (including some favorable outcomes) across climate scenarios, sectors, and regions. Noteworthy differences in impacts across households are also present both by region and by income category.
    Keywords: Climate Change Mitigation and Green House Gases,Climate Change Economics,Regional Economic Development,Science of Climate Change,Food&Beverage Industry
    Date: 2012–09–01
  4. By: Lucas Bretschger (ETH Zurich, Switzerland); Nujin Suphaphiphat (ETH Zurich, Switzerland)
    Abstract: The paper develops a two-region endogenous growth model with climate change affecting the countries' capital stocks negatively. We compare two different policies aimed at supporting less developed countries: climate mitigation by rich countries, which diminishes the increase in stock pollution and hence capital depreciation, and income transfers in the tradition of development aid. Under a mild set of assumptions we find that active climate policies are more efficient for rich economies and also, remarkably, better for poor countries than additional development aid. The main reason is the difference between the two policies with respect to their effects on economic growth. The results are robust with respect to possible model extensions.
    Keywords: Climate policy; development aid; endogenous growth; stock pollution
    JEL: O10 Q52 Q54
    Date: 2012–08
  5. By: Muhammad, Shahbaz; Lean, Hooi Hooi; Abdul, Farooq
    Abstract: Natural gas is a dominant fuel in Pakistan. It offers the cheapest and a cleaner alternative source of energy. This paper examines the relationship of natural gas consumption and economic growth in Pakistan. We include capital, labor and exports in the model with multivariate framework. The ARDL bounds testing approach to cointegration and innovative accounting approach are employed to investigate the dynamic causality relationships among the variables. We find the existence of long-run relationship among the variables. Natural gas consumption, real capital, labor and real exports are positively affecting the economic growth in Pakistan. Furthermore, we support the natural gas consumption-led-growth hypothesis and suggest that the natural gas conservation policies may retard the rate of economic growth.
    Keywords: Gas Consumption; Economic Growth
    JEL: Q4
    Date: 2012–08–05
  6. By: Richard S.J. Tol (Department of Economics, University of Sussex, UK; Institute for Environmental Studies, Department of Spatial Economics, Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, The Netherlands)
    Abstract: A Bentham-Rawls welfare function is the weighted sum of the net present welfare (Bentham) and the welfare of the worst-off generation (Rawls). If utility is non-decreasing over time, optimal climate policy is more stringent in the near-term under Bentham preferences than under Bentham-Rawls preferences. If utility is decreasing, Bentham-Rawls abatement is higher. If there is a chance of decreasing utility, Bentham-Rawls optimal climate policy is probably less stringent than Bentham policy.
    Keywords: climate policy; social cost of carbon; Bentham-Rawls preferences
    JEL: Q54
    Date: 2012–08
  7. By: Robin Burgess; Matthew Hansen; Benjamin Olken; Peter Potapov; Stefanie Sieber;
    Abstract: Tropical deforestation accounts for almost one-…fifth of greenhouse gas emissions worldwide and threatens the world’s most diverse ecosystems. The prevalence of illegal forest extraction in the tropics suggests that understanding the incentives of local bureaucrats and politicians who enforce forest policy may be critical to combating tropical deforestation. We …find support for this thesis using a novel satellite-based dataset that tracks annual changes in forest cover across eight years of institutional change in post-Soeharto Indonesia. Increases in the numbers of political jurisdictions are associated with increased deforestation and with lower prices in local wood markets, consistent with a model of Cournot competition between jurisdictions. We also show that illegal logging and rents from unevenly distributed oil and gas revenues are short run substitutes, but this effect disappears over time as political turnover occurs. The results illustrate how incentives faced by local government officials affect deforestation,and provide an example of how standard economic theories can explain illegal behavior.
    Keywords: political economy, corruption, deforestation, Cournot competition, satellite imagery, environmental monitoring, illegal logging, climate change, biodiversity
    JEL: D73 L73
    Date: 2012–04
  8. By: Simon Gachter, Daniele Nosenzo and Martin Sefon (School of Economics, University of Nottingham); Daniele Nosenzo (School of Economics, University of Nottingham); Martin Sefton (School of Economics, University of Nottingham)
    Abstract: We compare social preference and social norm based explanations for peer effects in a three-person gift-exchange game experiment. In the experiment a principal pays a wage to each of two agents, who then make effort choices sequentially. In our baseline treatment we observe that the second agent's effort is influenced by the effort choice of the first agent, even though there are no material spillovers between agents. This peer effect is predicted by a model of distributional social preferences (Fehr-Schmidt, 1999). As we show from a norms-elicitation experiment, it is also consistent with social norms compliance. A conditional logit investigation of the explanatory power of payoff inequality and elicited norms finds that the second agent's effort can be best explained by the social preferences model. In further treatments with modified games we find that the presence/strength of peer effects changes as predicted by the social preferences model. As with the baseline treatment, a conditional logit analysis favors an explanation based on social preferences, rather than social norms following for these treatments. Our results suggest that, in our context, the social preferences model provides a parsimonious explanation for the observed peer effect.
    Keywords: peer effects, social influence, gift-exchange, experiment, social preferences, inequity aversion, measuring social norms.
    Date: 2012–01
  9. By: Lopez-Feldman, Alejandro
    Abstract: This document provides the reader with the basic tools to obtain estimates of willingness to pay from a contingent valuation survey using Stata. The use of the commands singleb and doubleb is illustrated.
    Keywords: Contingent valuation; willingness to pay; Stata; doubleb; singleb
    JEL: C35 Q51
    Date: 2012
  10. By: Lucas Bretschger (ETH Zurich, Switzerland); Lin Zhang (ETH Zurich, Switzerland)
    Abstract: The paper investigates the long-run consequences of a phase-out of nuclear energy for the Swiss economy. We apply the CITE model, a CGE model with fully endogenous growth, and complement it with a bottom-up model. We find that the nuclear phase-out can be achieved at relatively low costs, even when the expansion capacities of other technologies are limited. Consumer welfare decreases by 0.4% at the maximum compared to business as usual. Our results show that an economy can cope well with ambitious energy policies through sufficient innovation. Economic growth is not slowed down significantly. The phase-out policy contributes to a structural shift in favor of innovative, energy extensive sectors. It does not work against the climate policy goals but rather accelerates the transition to a less energy-dependent economy.
    Keywords: Energy and growth; nuclear phase out; CGE model; induced innovation
    JEL: Q43 C68 Q48 O41
    Date: 2012–08

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