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Global CO2-Trade and Local Externalities

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  • Bruno S. Frey
  • Alois Stutzer

Abstract

The burning of fossil fuels not only causes CO2 emissions but at the same time impairs local environmental quality such as ambient air quality. The present paper analyzes the possible distortion arising from international trade in CO2 emissions when local externalities persist. It is theoretically derived that the maximal possible distortion is determined by the difference in factor endowment and population density of the trading regions. Moreover, an empirical illustration for Switzerland shows that a rich country buying emission rights sustains a welfare loss.

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Paper provided by Institute for Empirical Research in Economics - University of Zurich in its series IEW - Working Papers with number 077.

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Handle: RePEc:zur:iewwpx:077

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Keywords: International CO2 policy; emission trading; second-best analysis;

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  1. Selden Thomas M. & Song Daqing, 1994. "Environmental Quality and Development: Is There a Kuznets Curve for Air Pollution Emissions?," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 27(2), pages 147-162, September.
  2. William R. Cline, 1992. "Economics of Global Warming, The," Peterson Institute Press: All Books, Peterson Institute for International Economics, number 39.
  3. Siebert, Horst, 1977. "Environmental Quality and the Gains from Trade," Kyklos, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 30(4), pages 657-73.
  4. 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.
  5. Felder, Stefan & Schleiniger, Reto, 2002. "National CO2 policy and externalities: some general equilibrium results for Switzerland," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 24(5), pages 509-522, September.
  6. Hahn, Robert W, 1989. "Economic Prescriptions for Environmental Problems: How the Patient Followed the Doctor's Orders," Journal of Economic Perspectives, American Economic Association, vol. 3(2), pages 95-114, Spring.
  7. Stavins, Robert & Keohane, Nathaniel & Revesz, Richard, 1997. "The Positive Political Economy of Instrument Choice in Environmental Policy," Discussion Papers dp-97-25, Resources For the Future.
  8. Boyd Roy & Krutilla Kerry & Viscusi W. Kip, 1995. "Energy Taxation as a Policy Instrument to Reduce CO2 Emissions: A Net Benefit Analysis," Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, Elsevier, vol. 29(1), pages 1-24, July.
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