nep-res New Economics Papers
on Resource Economics
Issue of 2016‒07‒02
three papers chosen by
Maximo Rossi
Universidad de la República

  1. Voting Behavior on Carbon Pollution from Power Plants By Joshua Hall; Elham Erfanian; Caleb Stair
  2. Environmental Policy and Endogenous Market Structure By Barbara Annicchiarico; Luca Correani; Fabio Di Dio
  3. Entrepreneurs and the Co-Creation of Ecotourism in Costa Rica By Geoffrey G. Jones; Andrew Spadafora

  1. By: Joshua Hall (West Virginia University, Department of Economics); Elham Erfanian (West Virginia University, Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics); Caleb Stair (West Virginia University, Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics)
    Abstract: Environmental regulation is a polarizing issue. In 2014, a bill came to a vote in the U.S. House of Representatives that would limit the powers of the Environmental Protection Agency. This empirical note identifies the characteristics that influenced the voting behavior of House Representatives on this bill. Political party, educational background, the location quotient of the mining industry in the representative’s state, and the amount of emissions in the Representative’s state are considered. A member’s political party is the primary factor influencing voting behavior but the location quotient of the mining industry also plays an important role.
    Keywords: EPA regulations; carbon emissions; fossil fuel-fired; electric utility generating
    JEL: H7 Q4 Q58
    Date: 2016–06
  2. By: Barbara Annicchiarico (DEF and CEIS, Università di Roma "Tor Vergata"); Luca Correani (Dipartimento di Economia e Impresa, Università degli Studi della Tuscia); Fabio Di Dio (Sogei S.p.a. - IT Economia)
    Abstract: This paper presents a simple dynamic general equilibrium model with supply-side strategic interactions to study the economic effects of mitigating greenhouse gas emissions in an economy with an emission cap and oligopolistic firms competing on prices. With such endogenous market structure a gradual decarbonization policy is likely to induce higher markups, while the number of active firms displays a U-shaped behavior, first decreasing and then increasing. In the long run more firms are active, but they transfer a part of the compliance cost to households by charging a higher markup. The negative effects on the level of economic activity of this anti-competitive outcome are strongly mitigated by recycling policies.
    Keywords: Environmental Policy, Dynamic General Equilibrium Model, Endogenous Market Structure.
    JEL: E32 Q54 Q58
    Date: 2016–06–22
  3. By: Geoffrey G. Jones (Harvard Business School, General Management Unit); Andrew Spadafora (Harvard Business School)
    Abstract: Between the 1970s and the 2000s Costa Rica became established as the world's leading ecotourism destination. This working paper suggests that although Costa Rica benefited from biodiversity and a pleasant climate, the country's preeminence in ecotourism requires more than a natural resource endowment explanation. The paper argues that the ecotourism industry was a co-creation of the public, private, and tertiary sectors. While the role of the government and conservation NGOs is acknowledged in the existing literature, this study draws attention to the critical role of small entrepreneurs. Making extensive use of oral history, the working paper demonstrates the role of tour companies in drawing affluent Western ecotourists to the country, and of the creators of ecolodges and other forms of accommodation in providing them with somewhere to stay. These entrepreneurs, many of them expatriate Americans, helped ensure that formally protected areas remained sustainable parks and reserves, by providing revenues, education in conservation to tourists, and community development and jobs. Clustering created positive externalities for new entrepreneurs to enter the industry, who could also learn from knowledge spillovers. There were downsides to the new industry, however. The creation of the national image of a natural paradise enabled many businesses which were not environmentally sustainable to free-ride on the green image. Even values-driven ecotourism entrepreneurs faced questions about their impact as they expanded the scale of their operations. While scaling was a sign of success and delivered many benefits to Costa Rica, there were distinct drawbacks from a sustainability perspective.
    Keywords: eco-tourism; Costa Rica; entrepreneurship; sustainability
    JEL: N56 N86
    Date: 2016–06

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