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Bioenergy, Pollution, and Economic Growth

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  • Ankarhem, Mattias

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    (Department of Economics, Umeå University)

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    Abstract

    This thesis consists of four papers: two of them deal with the effects on the forest sector of an increase in the demand for forest fuels, and two of them concern the relation between economic growth and pollution. Paper [I] is a first, preliminary study of the potential effects on the Swedish forest sector of a continuing rise in the use of forest resources as a fuel in energy generation. Sweden has made a commitment that the energy system should be sustainable, i.e., it should be based on renewable resources. However, an increasing use of the forest resources as an energy input could have effects outside the energy sector. We consider this in a static model by estimating a system of demand and supply equations for the four main actors on the Swedish roundwood market; forestry, sawmills, pulpmills and the energy sector. We then calculate the industries' short run supply and demand elasticities. Paper [II], is a development of the former paper. In this paper, we estimate the dynamic effects on the forest sector of an increased demand for forest fuels. This is done by developing a partial adjustment model of the forest sector that enables short, intermediate, and long run price elasticities to be estimated. It is relevant to study the effects of increased demand for forest fuels as the Swedish government has committed to an energy policy that is likely to further increase the use of renewable resources in the Swedish energy system. Four subsectors are included in the model: forestry, sawmills, pulpmills and the energy industry. The results show that the short run elasticities are fairly consistent with earlier studies and that sluggish adjustment in the capital stock is important in determining the intermediate and long run responses. Simulation shows that an increase in the demand for forest fuels has a positive effect on the equilibrium price of all three types of wood, and a negative effect on the equilibrium quantities of sawtimber and pulpwood. In paper [III] a Shephard distance function approach is used to estimate time series of shadow prices for Swedish emissions of CO2, SO2, and VOC for the period 1918 - 1994. The shadow prices are in a next step regressed on GDP per capita. The objective of the study is closely linked to hypothesis of environmental Kuznets curves. We conclude that the time series of the shadow prices from this approach can not be used to explain the EKCs found for Swedish emissions. In paper [IV], we calculate time series of shadow prices for Swedish emissions of CO2, SO2, and VOC for the period 1918 - 1994. The shadow prices are in a next step related to income, to explain the EKCs previously found for Swedish data on the three emissions. Newly constructed historical emission time series enable studying a single country's emission paths through increasing levels of economic activity. A directional distance function approach is used to estimate the industry's production process in order to calculate the opportunity costs of a reduction in the emissions. The time series of the shadow prices show support for EKCs for the Swedish industry.

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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by Umeå University, Department of Economics in its series Umeå Economic Studies with number 661.

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    Length: 22 pages
    Date of creation: 28 Apr 2005
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    Handle: RePEc:hhs:umnees:0661

    Contact details of provider:
    Postal: Department of Economics, Umeå University, S-901 87 Umeå, Sweden
    Phone: 090 - 786 61 42
    Fax: 090 - 77 23 02
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    Web page: http://www.econ.umu.se/
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    Related research

    Keywords: Forest sector; Forest fuels; Dynamic factor demand; Adjustment costs; Economic growth; Pollution; Environmental Kuznets curve; Shadow price; Distance function;

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    1. Stern, David I., 2004. "The Rise and Fall of the Environmental Kuznets Curve," World Development, Elsevier, vol. 32(8), pages 1419-1439, August.
    2. James Andreoni & Arik Levinson, 1998. "The Simple Analytics of the Environmental Kuznets Curve," NBER Working Papers 6739, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
    3. Stern , David I., 1998. "Progress on the environmental Kuznets curve?," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 3(02), pages 173-196, May.
    4. Reig-Martinez, Ernest & Picazo-Tadeo, Andres & Hernandez-Sancho, Francesc, 2001. "The calculation of shadow prices for industrial wastes using distance functions: An analysis for Spanish ceramic pavements firms," International Journal of Production Economics, Elsevier, vol. 69(3), pages 277-285, February.
    5. JAY S. COGGINS & John R. Swinton, 1994. "The Price of Pollution: A Dual Approach to Valuing SO2 Allowances," Wisconsin-Madison Agricultural and Applied Economics Staff Papers 378, Wisconsin-Madison Agricultural and Applied Economics Department.
    6. Fare, Rolf, et al, 1993. "Derivation of Shadow Prices for Undesirable Outputs: A Distance Function Approach," The Review of Economics and Statistics, MIT Press, vol. 75(2), pages 374-80, May.
    7. Grossman, G.M & Krueger, A.B., 1991. "Environmental Impacts of a North American Free Trade Agreement," Papers 158, Princeton, Woodrow Wilson School - Public and International Affairs.
    8. Stokey, Nancy L, 1998. "Are There Limits to Growth?," International Economic Review, Department of Economics, University of Pennsylvania and Osaka University Institute of Social and Economic Research Association, vol. 39(1), pages 1-31, February.
    9. Selden Thomas M. & Song Daqing, 1995. "Neoclassical Growth, the J Curve for Abatement, and the Inverted U Curve for Pollution," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 29(2), pages 162-168, September.
    10. Sjöström, Magnus, 2004. "Biofuels and Market Power - The Case of Swedish District Heating Plants," UmeÃ¥ Economic Studies 634, Umeå University, Department of Economics.
    11. Brannlund, Runar & Kristrom, Bengt, 2001. "Too hot to handle?: Benefits and costs of stimulating the use of biofuels in the Swedish heating sector," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 23(4), pages 343-358, October.
    12. Cole, M.A. & Rayner, A.J. & Bates, J.M., 1997. "The environmental Kuznets curve: an empirical analysis," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 2(04), pages 401-416, November.
    13. Vincent, Jeffrey R., 1997. "Testing for environmental Kuznets curves within a developing country," Environment and Development Economics, Cambridge University Press, vol. 2(04), pages 417-431, November.
    14. Lopez Ramon, 1994. "The Environment as a Factor of Production: The Effects of Economic Growth and Trade Liberalization," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 163-184, September.
    15. Holtz-Eakin, Douglas & Selden, Thomas M., 1995. "Stoking the fires? CO2 emissions and economic growth," Journal of Public Economics, Elsevier, vol. 57(1), pages 85-101, May.
    16. Marklund, Per-Olov & Samakovlis, Eva, 2003. "What is Driving the EU Burden-Sharing Agreement: Efficiency or Equity?," UmeÃ¥ Economic Studies 620, Umeå University, Department of Economics.
    17. Hamermesh, Daniel S & Pfann, Gerard Antonie, 1996. "Adjustment Costs in Factor Demand," CEPR Discussion Papers 1371, C.E.P.R. Discussion Papers.
    18. Fare, Rolf & Grosskopf, Shawna & Noh, Dong-Woon & Weber, William, 2005. "Characteristics of a polluting technology: theory and practice," Journal of Econometrics, Elsevier, vol. 126(2), pages 469-492, June.
    19. Lundgren, Tommy & Sjöström, Magnus, 1998. "A Dynamic Factor Demand Model for the Swedish Pulp Industry, 1998," UmeÃ¥ Economic Studies 479, Umeå University, Department of Economics.
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