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An intertemporal approach to measuring environmental performance with directional distance functions: Greenhouse gas emissions in the European Union

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  • Picazo-Tadeo, Andrés J.
  • Castillo-Giménez, Juana
  • Beltrán-Esteve, Mercedes

Abstract

The impact of economic activity on the environment is a matter of growing concern for firm managers, policymakers, researchers and society as a whole. Building on previous work by Kortelainen (2008) [Dynamic environmental performance analysis: A Malmquist index approach. Ecological Economics 64, 701–715], we contribute an approach to assessing intertemporal environmental performance at the level of the management of specific pollutants, as the result of change in eco-efficiency and environmental technical change, which identify catching-up with best available environmental practices and eco-innovation, respectively. In doing so, we use Data Envelopment Analysis techniques, directional distance functions and Luenberger productivity indicators. Our approach is employed to assess environmental performance in the emission of greenhouse gases in the European Union-28 over the period 1990–2011. The main result is that environmental performance has been boosted by environmental technical change rather than by increases in eco-efficiency, although with certain differences among air pollutants. Accordingly, policy measures aimed at enhancing eco-efficiency are recommended to improve environmental performance in European countries regarding greenhouse gas emissions.

Suggested Citation

  • Picazo-Tadeo, Andrés J. & Castillo-Giménez, Juana & Beltrán-Esteve, Mercedes, 2014. "An intertemporal approach to measuring environmental performance with directional distance functions: Greenhouse gas emissions in the European Union," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 100(C), pages 173-182.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:ecolec:v:100:y:2014:i:c:p:173-182
    DOI: 10.1016/j.ecolecon.2014.02.004
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    Cited by:

    1. Valeria Costantini & Francesco Crespi & Giovanni Marin & Elena Paglialunga, 2016. "Eco-innovation, sustainable supply chains and environmental performance in European industries," LEM Papers Series 2016/19, Laboratory of Economics and Management (LEM), Sant'Anna School of Advanced Studies, Pisa, Italy.
    2. Andras Tothmihaly, & Stephan von Cramon-Taubadel, & Verina Ingram., 2017. "How can the environmental efficiency of Indonesian cocoa farms be increased?," GlobalFood Discussion Papers 258586, Georg-August-Universitaet Goettingen, GlobalFood, Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development.
    3. repec:eee:jeeman:v:85:y:2017:i:c:p:21-34 is not listed on IDEAS
    4. 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.
    5. Zhou, P. & Wang, M., 2016. "Carbon dioxide emissions allocation: A review," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 125(C), pages 47-59.
    6. Beltrán-Esteve, Mercedes & Picazo-Tadeo, Andrés J., 2015. "Assessing environmental performance trends in the transport industry: Eco-innovation or catching-up?," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 51(C), pages 570-580.
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    8. repec:eee:energy:v:147:y:2018:i:c:p:297-307 is not listed on IDEAS
    9. Zhang, Zibin & Ye, Jianliang, 2015. "Decomposition of environmental total factor productivity growth using hyperbolic distance functions: A panel data analysis for China," Energy Economics, Elsevier, vol. 47(C), pages 87-97.
    10. Ghisetti, Claudia & Quatraro, Francesco, 2017. "Green Technologies and Environmental Productivity: A Cross-sectoral Analysis of Direct and Indirect Effects in Italian Regions," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 132(C), pages 1-13.
    11. Yang, Fuxia & Yang, Mian, 2015. "Analysis on China's eco-innovations: Regulation context, intertemporal change and regional differences," European Journal of Operational Research, Elsevier, vol. 247(3), pages 1003-1012.
    12. repec:eee:rensus:v:90:y:2018:i:c:p:605-622 is not listed on IDEAS
    13. Liobikienė, Genovaitė & Butkus, Mindaugas, 2017. "The European Union possibilities to achieve targets of Europe 2020 and Paris agreement climate policy," Renewable Energy, Elsevier, vol. 106(C), pages 298-309.
    14. Mohamed Ghali & Laure Latruffe & Karine Daniel, 2016. "Efficient Use of Energy Resources on French Farms: An Analysis through Technical Efficiency," Energies, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 9(8), pages 1-15, July.
    15. Beltrán-Esteve, Mercedes & Picazo-Tadeo, Andrés J., 2017. "Assessing environmental performance in the European Union: Eco-innovation versus catching-up," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 104(C), pages 240-252.
    16. Ke Wang & Yujiao Xian & Yi-Ming Wei & Zhimin Huang, 2016. "Sources of carbon productivity change: A decomposition and disaggregation analysis based on global Luenberger productivity indicator and endogenous directional distance function," CEEP-BIT Working Papers 91, Center for Energy and Environmental Policy Research (CEEP), Beijing Institute of Technology.
    17. Huang, Wei & Bruemmer, Bernhard & Huntsinger, Lynn, 2016. "Incorporating measures of grassland productivity into efficiency estimates for livestock grazing on the Qinghai-Tibetan Plateau in China," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 122(C), pages 1-11.
    18. Alfons Oude Lansink & Alan Wall, 2014. "Frontier models for evaluating environmental efficiency: an overview," Economics and Business Letters, Oviedo University Press, vol. 3(1), pages 43-50.
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Intertemporal environmental performance; Directional distance functions; Data Envelopment Analysis; Greenhouse gases emissions; European Union;

    JEL classification:

    • C61 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling - - - Optimization Techniques; Programming Models; Dynamic Analysis
    • O44 - Economic Development, Innovation, Technological Change, and Growth - - Economic Growth and Aggregate Productivity - - - Environment and Growth
    • Q01 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - General - - - Sustainable Development
    • Q54 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Environmental Economics - - - Climate; Natural Disasters and their Management; Global Warming

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