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Sulphur emissions and productivity growth in industrialised countries

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  • Philippe Barla
  • Sergio Perelman

Abstract

In this paper, we examine the relationship between economic and environmental performance. More specifically, we analyse the impact of SO2 reduction in the eighties (1980-1992) on productivity growth, technical efficiency and technological progress for a set of 12 OECD countries. Our timeframe roughly corresponds to the adoption and implementation of the First Sulphur Protocol signed in 1985. First, we estimate an output based Malmquist productivity index using distance functions derived from successive DEA (Data Envelopment Analysis) frontiers. This index is decomposed in two components namely technical and efficiency change. Second, we regress the change in productivity and its two components on a set of explanatory variables including annual variations in SO2 emissions. The results indicate that reductions in SO2 do not seem to have had a significant impact on productivity growth. The decomposition into efficiency and technology changes suggests that two countervailing effects may explain this result. On one hand, SO2 cutbacks adversely affect efficiency but on the other hand, they stimulate technical change. Copyright CIRIEC, 2005.

Suggested Citation

  • Philippe Barla & Sergio Perelman, 2005. "Sulphur emissions and productivity growth in industrialised countries," Annals of Public and Cooperative Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 76(2), pages 275-300, June.
  • Handle: RePEc:bla:annpce:v:76:y:2005:i:2:p:275-300
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    Cited by:

    1. Gómez-Calvet, Roberto & Conesa, David & Gómez-Calvet, Ana Rosa & Tortosa-Ausina, Emili, 2014. "Energy efficiency in the European Union: What can be learned from the joint application of directional distance functions and slacks-based measures?," Applied Energy, Elsevier, vol. 132(C), pages 137-154.
    2. Zhou, P. & Ang, B.W. & Poh, K.L., 2008. "A survey of data envelopment analysis in energy and environmental studies," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 189(1), pages 1-18, August.
    3. Sueyoshi, Toshiyuki & Yuan, Yan & Goto, Mika, 2017. "A literature study for DEA applied to energy and environment," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 62(C), pages 104-124.
    4. Huang, Chin-wei & Chiu, Yung-ho & Fang, Wei-ta & Shen, Neng, 2014. "Assessing the performance of Taiwan’s environmental protection system with a non-radial network DEA approach," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 74(C), pages 547-556.

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