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Growth and the Optimal Carbon Tax: When to switch from exhaustible resources to renewables?

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  • Frederick van der Ploeg
  • Cees Withagen

Abstract

Optimal climate policy is studied in a Ramsey growth model. A developing economy weighs global warming less, hence is more likely to exhaust fossil fuel and exacerbate global warming. The optimal carbon tax is higher for a developed economy. We analyze the optimal time of transition from fossil fuel to renewables, amount of fossil fuel to leave in situ, and carbon tax. Subsidizing a backstop without an optimal carbon tax induces more fossil fuel to be left in situ and a quicker phasing in of renewables, but fossil fuel is depleted more quickly. Global warming need thus not be alleviated.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by Oxford Centre for the Analysis of Resource Rich Economies, University of Oxford in its series OxCarre Working Papers with number 055.

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Date of creation: 2010
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Handle: RePEc:oxf:oxcrwp:055

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Related research

Keywords: carbon tax; renewables; exhaustible resources; global warming; growth; intergenerational inequality aversion; second best; Green Paradox;

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References

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  1. Daron Acemoglu & Philippe Aghion & Leonardo Bursztyn & David Hemous, 2009. "The Environment and Directed Technical Change," NBER Working Papers 15451, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  2. Bovenberg, A.L. & Smulders, J.A., 1994. "Transitional impact of environmental policy in an endogenous growth model," Discussion Paper 1994-50, Tilburg University, Center for Economic Research.
  3. Geoffrey Heal, 1976. "The Relationship Between Price and Extraction Cost for a Resource with a Backstop Technology," Bell Journal of Economics, The RAND Corporation, vol. 7(2), pages 371-378, Autumn.
  4. Mikhail Golosov & John Hassler & Per Krusell & Aleh Tsyvinski, 2011. "Optimal Taxes on Fossil Fuel in General Equilibrium," NBER Working Papers 17348, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  5. R. Quentin Grafton & Tom Kompas & Ngo Van Long, 2010. "Biofuels Subsidies and the Green Paradox," CESifo Working Paper Series 2960, CESifo Group Munich.
  6. Frederick van der Ploeg & Cees Withagen, 2010. "Is there really a Green Paradox?," Tinbergen Institute Discussion Papers 10-020/3, Tinbergen Institute, revised 27 Aug 2012.
  7. R. Mehra & E. Prescott, 2010. "The equity premium: a puzzle," Levine's Working Paper Archive 1401, David K. Levine.
  8. Withagen, C.A.A.M., 1994. "Pollution and exhaustibility of fossil fuels resource," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-3107033, Tilburg University.
  9. Ploeg, F. van der & Withagen, C.A.A.M., 1991. "Pollution control and the Ramsey problem," Open Access publications from Tilburg University urn:nbn:nl:ui:12-3107039, Tilburg University.
  10. Valentina Bosetti & Carlo Carraro & Romain Duval & Alessandra Sgobbi & Massimo Tavoni, 2009. "The Role of R&D and Technology Diffusion in Climate Change Mitigation: New Perspectives Using the WITCH Model," OECD Economics Department Working Papers 664, OECD Publishing.
  11. Snorre Kverndokk, 1994. "Depletion of Fossil Fuels and the impact of Global Warming," Discussion Papers 107, Research Department of Statistics Norway.
  12. Hans-Werner Sinn, 2007. "Public Policies against Global Warming," CESifo Working Paper Series 2087, CESifo Group Munich.
  13. Withagen, Cees, 1994. "Pollution and exhaustibility of fossil fuels," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 16(3), pages 235-242, August.
  14. Tsur, Yacov & Zemel, Amos, 2005. "Scarcity, growth and R&D," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 49(3), pages 484-499, May.
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Cited by:
  1. Frederick van der Ploeg & Cees Withagen, 2011. "Too Much Coal, Too Little Oil," OxCarre Working Papers 056, Oxford Centre for the Analysis of Resource Rich Economies, University of Oxford.
  2. Kögel, Tomas, 2011. "The social cost of carbon on an optimal balanced growth path," Economics Discussion Papers 2011-35, Kiel Institute for the World Economy.
  3. Haradhan Kumar Mohajan, 2011. "Optimal Environmental Taxes Due to Health Effect," KASBIT Journal of Management & Social Science, Khadim Ali Shah Bukhari Institute of Technology (KASBIT), vol. 4, pages 1-19, December.

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