Advanced Search
MyIDEAS: Login to save this paper or follow this series

Natural Resource Curse and Poverty in Appalachian America

Contents:

Author Info

  • Partridge, Mark
  • Betz, Mike
  • Lobao, Linda

Abstract

The Appalachian mountain region has long been characterized by deep poverty which led to the formation of the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) in 1965. The ARC region covers West Virginia and parts of 12 other states, running from New York to Mississippi (Ziliak 2012). The ARC region had an average county poverty rate of over 40 percent in 1960, about double the national average (Deaton and Niman 2012; Ziliak 2012). While the poverty gap between the ARC region and the rest of the nation closed significantly by 1990, it remained nearly twice as large in Central Appalachia. There are many reasons for higher poverty in Appalachia in general and Central Appalachia in particular. Possible causes include a low-paying industry structure, below average education, low household mobility, and remoteness from to cities (Weber et al. 2005; Partridge and Rickman 2005; Lobao 2004). A key distinction between Central Appalachia and the rest of the ARC region is its historic dependence on coal mining. There is long literature arguing that the area’s dependence on coal mining has contributed to its deep poverty through weaker local governance, entrepreneurship, and educational attainment, as well as degrading the environment, poor health outcomes, and limitations on other economic opportunities (Deaton and Niman 2012; James and Aadland 2011). These factors are broadly associated with the natural resources curse in the international development literature. More recently, the process of mountain top mining (MTM) has expanded coal mining’s environmental footprint in the region, possibly increasing health risks and further reducing the chances for long-term amenity-led growth that can alleviate poverty (Deller 2010; Woods and Gordon 2011). This study reinvestigates the causes of county poverty rates in Appalachia with a special focus on coal mining’s role. Using data over the 1990-2010 period we assess whether coal mining continues to have a positive association with poverty rates, even as the industry’s relative size has declined. We also appraise whether MTM is associated with higher poverty. We do this by comparing the ARC region to the rest of the U.S. and by using more disaggregated employment data that allows us to differentiate the effects of coal mining from other mining (versus aggregating all mining together as in past research). The results suggest that any potential adverse effects of coal mining on poverty have declined over time. Below, we first develop an empirical model followed by the empirical results. The final section provides our concluding thoughts.

Download Info

If you experience problems downloading a file, check if you have the proper application to view it first. In case of further problems read the IDEAS help page. Note that these files are not on the IDEAS site. Please be patient as the files may be large.
File URL: http://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de/38290/
File Function: original version
Download Restriction: no

Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by University Library of Munich, Germany in its series MPRA Paper with number 38290.

as in new window
Length:
Date of creation: 2012
Date of revision:
Handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:38290

Contact details of provider:
Postal: Schackstr. 4, D-80539 Munich, Germany
Phone: +49-(0)89-2180-2219
Fax: +49-(0)89-2180-3900
Web page: http://mpra.ub.uni-muenchen.de
More information through EDIRC

Related research

Keywords: natural resource curse; poverty; Appalachia;

Other versions of this item:

Find related papers by JEL classification:

This paper has been announced in the following NEP Reports:

References

References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
as in new window
  1. James, Alex & Aadland, David, 2011. "The curse of natural resources: An empirical investigation of U.S. counties," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(2), pages 440-453, May.
  2. Dorfman, Jeffrey H. & Patridge, Mark D. & Galloway, Hamilton, 2008. "Are High-Tech Employment and Natural Amenities Linked?: Answers from a Smoothed Bayesian Spatial Model," 2008 Annual Meeting, July 27-29, 2008, Orlando, Florida 6459, American Agricultural Economics Association (New Name 2008: Agricultural and Applied Economics Association).
  3. Mark D. Partridge & Dan S. Rickman, 2005. "High-Poverty Nonmetropolitan Counties in America: Can Economic Development Help?," International Regional Science Review, , , vol. 28(4), pages 415-440, October.
  4. Dan Black & Terra McKinnish & Seth Sanders, 2005. "The Economic Impact Of The Coal Boom And Bust," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, Royal Economic Society, vol. 115(503), pages 449-476, 04.
  5. Mark D. Partridge & Dan S. Rickman, 2008. "Distance From Urban Agglomeration Economies And Rural Poverty," Journal of Regional Science, Wiley Blackwell, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 48(2), pages 285-310.
Full references (including those not matched with items on IDEAS)

Citations

Citations are extracted by the CitEc Project, subscribe to its RSS feed for this item.
as in new window

Cited by:
  1. Marchand, Joseph, 2013. "The Distributional Impacts of an Energy Boom in Western Canada," Working Papers 2013-13, University of Alberta, Department of Economics, revised 30 May 2014.
  2. Betz, Mike & Farren, Michael & Lobao, Linda & Partridge, Mark D., 2014. "Coal Mining, Economic Development, and the Natural Resource Curse," MPRA Paper 58016, University Library of Munich, Germany.

Lists

This item is not listed on Wikipedia, on a reading list or among the top items on IDEAS.

Statistics

Access and download statistics

Corrections

When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:pra:mprapa:38290. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.

For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Ekkehart Schlicht).

If you have authored this item and are not yet registered with RePEc, we encourage you to do it here. This allows to link your profile to this item. It also allows you to accept potential citations to this item that we are uncertain about.

If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.

If the full references list an item that is present in RePEc, but the system did not link to it, you can help with this form.

If you know of missing items citing this one, you can help us creating those links by adding the relevant references in the same way as above, for each refering item. If you are a registered author of this item, you may also want to check the "citations" tab in your profile, as there may be some citations waiting for confirmation.

Please note that corrections may take a couple of weeks to filter through the various RePEc services.