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Environmental Effects of International Trade

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  • Frankel, Jeffrey

    (Harvard University)

Abstract

The report surveys the state of our knowledge regarding the effects of trade on the environment. A central question is whether globalization helps or hurts in achieving the best tradeoff between environmental and economic goals. Do international trade and investment allow countries to achieve more economic growth for any given level of environmental quality? Or do they damage environmental quality for any given rate of economic growth? Globalization is a complex trend, encompassing many forces and many effects. It would be surprising if all of them were always unfavorable to the environment, or all of them favorable. The highest priority should be to determine ways in which globalization can be successfully harnessed to promote protection of the environment, along with other shared objectives, as opposed to degradation of the environment. The report considers whether globalization has damaged environmental goals. Trade has some of its effects through the channel of accelerating economic growth, because trade contributes to growth analogously to investment, technological progress, and so on. Other effects come even when taking the level of income as given. In the case of each of the two channels, effects can be either positive or negative.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Harvard University, John F. Kennedy School of Government in its series Working Paper Series with number rwp09-006.

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Date of creation: Jan 2009
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Handle: RePEc:ecl:harjfk:rwp09-006

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Cited by:
  1. Gabriel Felbermayr & Mario Larch, 2014. "Transatlantic Free Trade: Questions and Answers from the Vantage Point of Trade Theory," CESifo Forum, Ifo Institute for Economic Research at the University of Munich, vol. 14(4), pages 03-17, 01.
  2. Ian Sheldon & Steve McCorriston, 2012. "Climate policy and border tax adjustments: Might industrial organization matter?," EconoQuantum, Revista de Economia y Negocios, Universidad de Guadalajara, Centro Universitario de Ciencias Economico Administrativas, Departamento de Metodos Cuantitativos y Maestria en Economia., vol. 9(2), pages 7-28, Julio-Dic.

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