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Promoting Pollution Prevention in Small Businesses: Costs and Benefits of the “Enviroclub” Initiative

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Author Info

  • Paul Lanoie

    ()
    (IEA, HEC Montréal)

  • Alexandra Rochon-Fabien
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    Abstract

    The Enviroclub initiative was developed by three federal government agencies—Canada Economic Development for Quebec Regions, Environment Canada and the National Research Council Canada—and launched in 2001 to assist small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in improving their profitability and competitiveness through enhanced environmental performance. An Enviroclub consists of a group of 10-15 SMEs involved in training sessions on environmental management and carrying out at least one profitable in-plant pollution prevention project. The objective of this article is to provide a cost benefit analysis (CBA) of this original initiative in order to inform policy makers as to the social desirability of such programs. One of the main social benefits of this initiative is to reduce emissions of various pollutants, so that one of our largest challenges is to place a value on these environmental improvements. To do so, we use the “environmental value transfer” method to obtain values from previous relevant studies. We conduct our CBA at three different levels: we consider the costs and benefits first for the whole of society, then from the participating firms’ point of view and, finally, from the governments’ perspective. We conclude that, whichever perspective we choose, The Enviroclub initiative has been highly profitable.

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    File URL: http://www.hec.ca/iea/cahiers/2011/iea_1102_planoie.pdf
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    Bibliographic Info

    Paper provided by HEC Montréal, Institut d'économie appliquée in its series Cahiers de recherche with number 11-02.

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    Length: 26 pages
    Date of creation: Feb 2011
    Date of revision:
    Handle: RePEc:iea:carech:1102

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    Postal: Institut d'économie appliquée HEC Montréal 3000, Chemin de la Côte-Sainte-Catherine Montréal, Québec H3T 2A7
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    Related research

    Keywords: cost-benefit analysis; SMEs; environment training; environmental performance;

    This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

    References

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    1. Dachraoui, Kais & Harchaoui, Tarek, 2004. "Water Use, Shadow Prices and the Canadian Business Sector Productivity Performance," Economic Analysis (EA) Research Paper Series 2004026e, Statistics Canada, Analytical Studies Branch.
    2. repec:reg:rpubli:140 is not listed on IDEAS
    3. Muller, Nicholas Z. & Mendelsohn, Robert, 2007. "Measuring the damages of air pollution in the United States," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 54(1), pages 1-14, July.
    4. Spash, Clive L. & Vatn, Arild, 2006. "Transferring environmental value estimates: Issues and alternatives," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(2), pages 379-388, December.
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    Cited by:
    1. Ambec, Stefan & Cohen, Mark & Elgie, Stewart & Lanoie, Paul, 2010. "The Porter Hypothesis at 20: Can Environmental Regulation Enhance Innovation and Competitiveness?," IDEI Working Papers 655, Institut d'Économie Industrielle (IDEI), Toulouse.

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