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Phasing out a polluting input in a growth model with directed technological change

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  • Eriksson, Clas

Abstract

This paper explores the potential conflict between economic growth and the environment, and the optimal long-run environmental policy. It formulates a growth model with directed technological change and focuses on the case with low elasticity of substitution between clean and dirty inputs in production. New technology is substituted for the polluting input, which results in a gradual decline in pollution along the optimal long-run growth path. In contrast to some recent work, the era of pollution and environmental policy is here not just a transitory phase in economic development. This result means that the government's continuous efforts to reconcile economic growth and the environment will always be needed. The socially optimal policy includes a perpetual subsidy to ‘green’ research. The tax rate of pollution is monotonously increasing, while the pollution tax payments constitute a constant share of income. These policies result in a quite modest growth drag.

Suggested Citation

  • Eriksson, Clas, 2018. "Phasing out a polluting input in a growth model with directed technological change," Economic Modelling, Elsevier, vol. 68(C), pages 461-474.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecmode:v:68:y:2018:i:c:p:461-474
    DOI: 10.1016/j.econmod.2017.08.022
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    Keywords

    Directed technological change; Pollution; Energy substitution; Growth drag;

    JEL classification:

    • O30 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - General
    • O31 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Innovation and Invention: Processes and Incentives
    • O33 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Innovation; Research and Development; Technological Change; Intellectual Property Rights - - - Technological Change: Choices and Consequences; Diffusion Processes
    • C65 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Miscellaneous Mathematical Tools

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