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Inequality in CO2 emissions across countries and its relationship with income inequality: A distributive approach

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  • Padilla, Emilio
  • Serrano, Alfredo

Abstract

This paper analyses the inequality in CO2 emissions across countries (and groups of countries) and the relationship of this inequality with income inequality across countries for the period (1971-1999). The research employs the tools that are usually applied in income distribution analysis. The methodology used here gives qualitative and quantitative information on some of the features of the inequalities across countries that are considered most relevant for the design and discussion of policies aimed at mitigating climate change. The paper studies the relationship between CO2 emissions and GDP and shows that income inequality across countries has been followed by an important inequality in the distribution of emissions. This inequality has diminished mildly, although the inequality in emissions across countries ordered in the increasing value of income (inequality between rich and poor countries) has diminished less than the “simple” inequality in emissions. Lastly, the paper shows that the inequality in CO2 emissions is mostly explained by the inequality between groups with different per capita income level. The importance of the inequality within groups of similar per capita income is much lower and has diminished during the period, especially in the low-middle income group.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Elsevier in its journal Energy Policy.

Volume (Year): 34 (2006)
Issue (Month): 14 (September)
Pages: 1762-1772

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Handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:34:y:2006:i:14:p:1762-1772

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  1. Arrow, Kenneth & Bolin, Bert & Costanza, Robert & Dasgupta, Partha & Folke, Carl & Holling, C. S. & Jansson, Bengt-Owe & Levin, Simon & Maler, Karl-Goran & Perrings, Charles & Pimentel, David, 1995. "Economic growth, carrying capacity, and the environment," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 15(2), pages 91-95, November.
  2. Mark Heil & Quentin Wodon, 2000. "Future Inequality in CO2 Emissions and the Impact of Abatement Proposals," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 17(2), pages 163-181, October.
  3. Roca, Jordi & Padilla, Emilio & Farre, Mariona & Galletto, Vittorio, 2001. "Economic growth and atmospheric pollution in Spain: discussing the environmental Kuznets curve hypothesis," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 39(1), pages 85-99, October.
  4. Alcantara, Vicent & Duro, Juan Antonio, 2004. "Inequality of energy intensities across OECD countries: a note," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 32(11), pages 1257-1260, July.
  5. Lerman, Robert I. & Yitzhaki, Shlomo, 1989. "Improving the accuracy of estimates of Gini coefficients," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 42(1), pages 43-47, September.
  6. P Ekins, 1997. "The Kuznets curve for the environment and economic growth: examining the evidence," Environment and Planning A, Pion Ltd, London, vol. 29(5), pages 805-830, May.
  7. Stern , David I., 1998. "Progress on the environmental Kuznets curve?," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 3(02), pages 173-196, May.
  8. Selden Thomas M. & Song Daqing, 1994. "Environmental Quality and Development: Is There a Kuznets Curve for Air Pollution Emissions?," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 147-162, September.
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