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Sustainability and substitution of exhaustible natural resources

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  • Bretschger, Lucas
  • Smulders, Sjak

Abstract

We study long-run growth in a multi-sector economy with non-renewable resource use and endogenous innovations. Unlike recent capital resource models, we find that poor input substitution need not be detrimental for sustainable growth; on the contrary, combined with resource depletion it fosters structural change, which helps to sustain research investments. We derive the properties of the transition path, show which sectors survive in the long run, and discuss whether the economy approximates a steady state with or without a scale effect. The results continue to hold when some sectors exhibit perfect competition.

Suggested Citation

  • Bretschger, Lucas & Smulders, Sjak, 2012. "Sustainability and substitution of exhaustible natural resources," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 36(4), pages 536-549.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:dyncon:v:36:y:2012:i:4:p:536-549
    DOI: 10.1016/j.jedc.2011.11.003
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    References listed on IDEAS

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    Cited by:

    1. Antoci, Angelo & Russu, Paolo & Sordi, Serena & Ticci, Elisa, 2014. "Industrialization and environmental externalities in a Solow-type model," Journal of Economic Dynamics and Control, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 211-224.
    2. Valente, Simone, 2011. "Intergenerational externalities, sustainability and welfare—The ambiguous effect of optimal policies on resource depletion," Resource and Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 33(4), pages 995-1014.
    3. Krysiak, Frank C., 2006. "Entropy, limits to growth, and the prospects for weak sustainability," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 58(1), pages 182-191, June.
    4. Angelo Antoci & Paolo Russu & Serena Sordi & Elisa Ticci, 2012. "The interaction between natural resources- and physical capital-intensive sectors in a behavioral model of economic growth," Department of Economics University of Siena 661, Department of Economics, University of Siena.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Growth; Non-renewable resources; Substitution; Investment incentives; Endogenous technological change; Sustainability;

    JEL classification:

    • Q20 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - General
    • Q30 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Nonrenewable Resources and Conservation - - - General
    • O41 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - One, Two, and Multisector Growth Models
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes

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